Sabrina I. Pacifici has completely revised and updated her guide, which she first published in 2005 and has updated yearly since that time. A wide range of free sites with expertly sourced content specific to researchers focused on business, finance, government data, analysis and news from the US and around the world, are included in this article. The resources in this guide are the work of corporate, government, academic, advocacy and news sources and individuals or groups using Open Source applications. This guide is pertinent to professionals who are actively engaged in maintaining a balanced yet diverse group of reliable, actionable free and low cost sources for their daily research.
Report – President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology Casts Doubt on Criminal Forensics
The President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) stated in their report – “Among the more than 2.2 million inmates in U.S. prisons and jails, countless may have been convicted using unreliable or fabricated forensic science. The U.S. has an abiding and unfulfilled moral obligation to free citizens who were imprisoned by such questionable means.” Ken Strutin’s article features information about the PCAST Report, its reception by advocates and critics, and related articles, publications and developments concerning the science of innocence.
In a previous article here on LLRX, Gigi Sohn wrote about how the new Federal Communications Commission majority revoked the approval of nine companies to become Lifeline providers and how that would weaken the Lifeline program and widen the digital divide. Sohn follows up with a discussion of how the E-Rate program, which makes broadband services more affordable for America’s schools and libraries, is in the FCC majority’s crosshairs. And much like the case of Lifeline, Sohn argues the majority is using procedural steps and administrative tools to weaken the E-Rate program.
Lifeline is one of four FCC programs intended to ensure that all Americans have access to modern communications. This article by Gigi Sohn, who served as Counselor to the Chairman in the Office of FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler until December 2016, elucidates how the new FCC majority fundamentally dislikes the Lifeline Program and will seek to weaken it by any means possible. She begins her discourse with a primer on the Lifeline program to allow researchers to educate themselves with the facts as the battle over dismantling this program evolves.
Debbie Rabina, Ph.D., Professor, Pratt Institute, School of Information posted this blog that merits sharing for both its intent, the use of Twitter to attract the attention of the President-Elect, and the crowd sourcing concept. Rabina states: America deserves a president who is well versed in the history of this nation and the documents upon which that history was built. Let’s present those documents to the President-Elect through his favorite medium–Twitter. Tweetathon began at 9am (central) on December 1, 2016. You are welcome to join at any time. Feel free to use whatever government related document (Supreme Court decisions, inaugural addresses, speeches, early American papers, etc.) strikes your fancy. Tag each tweet with the hashtag #GovDocs2Trump and please send them to @realdonaldtrump. This way we can fill his feed.
Nicole Black a Rochester, New York attorney and Legal Technology Evangelist delivers a clarion call for colleagues to expand their engagement with groups that work for civil liberties in the United States.
Info Today columnist recs National Digital Library Endowment idea to Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden
David Rothman is a consistent, expert advocate for funding a national digital library endowment, and his enthusiasm has been strengthened with the appointment of Dr. Carla Hayden as the new librarian of Congress.
Lyonette Louis-Jacques expertly guides us with this pathfinder on the research required to comprehensively address the frequently asked foreign and comparative law research question – how do I to find a country’s civil code?. A researcher might not know they need a civil code, but they often do. A civil code is the key to accessing all types of private law for many civil law jurisdictions. Modeled after the Code Napoléon or Code civil des Français (1804), a civil code usually contains laws relating to personal status, contracts, torts, “delict”, “obligations”, real and personal property, inheritance and succession, marriage, divorce, family, parent and child, private international law (conflict of laws/choice of law).
Jeff Roberts of the Colorado Freedom of Information Coalition raises the question of expanding free public access to court documents in Colorado. Specifically, he identifies the only location where a non-lawyer can view and request copies of all civil court documents from ICCES, the Integrated Colorado Courts E-Filing System. This location is the Colorado Supreme Court’s law library in the Ralph L. Carr Judicial Center in downtown Denver. Fees and access to PACER have been the topic of discussion in the legal community for many years. The urgency of this discussion and a resolution that ensures free public access to court filings is critically dependent upon the future of court law libraries.
This report by Sarah Glassmeyer presents findings from a survey of state level primary legal information. Primary legal information includes code (codified statutes passed by state legislatures), regulations (codified collections of rules passed by administrative agencies) and case law (appellate court decisions). This survey was done with the goal of reviewing the free and open status of this legal information.