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.
Bens Guide to the U.S. Government: Free, Educational Content from GPO for Children and Adults of all Ages
Kelly Seifert gives us a tour of Ben’s Guide to the U.S. Government, a service of the U.S. Government Publishing Office that presents educational content for children and adults of all ages on the workings of the U.S. Government and U.S. history, with a focus on civics. Recently redesigned, the site features all new site content, a device-friendly infrastructure, and a modernized look and feel that has been optimized for an intuitive learning experience.
Financial analyst Ryan Davis describes the landscape of exchanges based in and outside of the U.S. that have begun to offer trading in bitcoin derivatives. TeraExchange completed the first bitcoin derivative trade on a regulated exchange in the U.S. on October 8, 2014 with its Bitcoin Non-Deliverable Forward (NDF) contracts. More recently, LedgerX has submitted applications to become the first regulated bitcoin options exchange in the U.S. Additionally, some exchanges are based outside of the U.S. but may have significant customer bases in the U.S. Bitcoin derivatives offered on these exchanges include futures, forwards, and options.