Monday, July 29, 2013

WSBA's NWSidebar Blog

Did you know that the WSBA has a blog?  NWSidebar is an informal "tool that allows for engagement and interaction with and among multiple and varied voices from all segments of the WSBA membership and the broader supporting legal community."

Law students might find the New & Young Lawyers category to be interesting, including the posts about Demystifying Depositions and How to Start a Niche Practice.

Interested in writing?  Once you become a WSBA member, you might consider submitting a post for the blog and using it as a networking tool.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Don't you forget about me...Don't Don't Don't Don't

It is unlikely that Simple Minds knew how perfect their song, "Don't You (Forget About Me)" would be for information privacy back in 1985 when it hit #1 on the U.S. Hot 100 Billboard. Nearly 30 years later, "Don't You (Forget About Me)" could be the anthem of computing and privacy.

In 2009 Viktor Mayer-Schönberger's delete: the Virtue of Forgetting in the Digital Age was published. In it, he explored just how un-forgetful the Internet can be. Using real life examples, like Stacy Snyder (the student who was denied a teaching degree allegedly because of a MySpace picture) and Andrew Feldmar (a psychotherapist who was detained for four hours by a border guard after a Google search revealed an academic article written by Feldmar mentioning that he had taken LSD nearly four decades earlier), Mayer-Schönberger communicated the need for information privacy in our daily lives and considered potential responses at the end of the book.  If you think you might be interested in reading the book, check out an excerpt provided by NPR here.

Now, four years after publication, the Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing tomorrow on "Strengthening Privacy Rights and National Security: Oversight of FISA Surveillance Programs." The Committee is chaired by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), sponsor of the bi-partisan FISA Accountability and Privacy Protection Act of 2013 (S. 1215).

Reference Office Short Closure

The Reference Office will be closed on Tuesday, July 30th, from 1 - 2pm for a staff training session.

The Law Library will remain open during this hour.

Remember that you can submit a question to the Reference librarians by clicking on the Ask Us link on the Library website.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

11 Million Brand Records

Those conducting trademark and brand research now have an even more useful search tool.

Launched in 2011, the World Intellectual Property Organization's (WIPO) Global Brand Database now includes trademark data from the United States Patent and Trademark Office, expanding the database to more than 11 million* records.

In addition to U.S. trademark** records and other data sets, the database pulls together large collections such as International Trademarks filed under the Madrid System (updated daily), Australian Trademarks (updated weekly), and Canadian Trademarks (updated weekly).

The database is easy to use, and includes a concise section on "How to Search" (find it by clicking "help").

* The current number is 11,169,012 -- and growing daily
**For patents, try searching WIPO's PATENTSCOPE database.

Easy to use search box on WIPO's Global Brand Database

Monday, July 22, 2013

Farewell Copy Machine

The copier in Gallagher Law Library will be leaving on or around August 1. It will NOT share the untimely fate of the unfortunate printer in Office Space.
The copy machine
 If you had a long term relationship with the copy machine, do not fret! Gallagher Law Library will retain its scanners and printers in both copy alcoves. Did you know that the scanners allow you to scan to email (for free!), scan to a USB (for free!), or scan to the printers (at the same price per page as the copy machine)?
The scanner

 If you'd rather still use a regular copy machine, visit here to see other Dawg Prints Copy Locations around campus!

Friday, July 19, 2013

Crime Stats and Google

An economist has been mining Google search data to learn more about crime, particularly for crimes that are underreported. Seth Stephens-Davidowitz, How Googling Unmasks Child Abuse, N.Y. Times, July 13, 2013.

Stephens-Davidowitz writes that another expert said that child abuse and neglect declined during the recession. Great news, right? But Stephens-Davidowitz found that certain Google searches went up, correlating with areas of high unemployment and decreased social services.
After declining for many years in the United States, the searches that seem to have come from abuse victims themselves rose as soon as the Great Recession began. On weeks that unemployment claims rose, these searches rose as well.
He also found higher rates of child mortality due to abuse—deaths due to abuse are less likely to be unreported than abuse itself.

Seth Stephens-Davidowitz's scholarly paper on this study is Unreported Victims of an Economic Downturn, July 12, 2013.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

The Law and Copycats

If you've been operating under the assumption that nobody likes a copycat, the billion dollar knock-off industry would seem to indicate otherwise.   Copycats have raked in cash peddling faux Crocs and untrue True Religion jeans but copycats are not isolated only to the fashion industry.

The Knockoff Economy: How Imitation Sparks Innovation

In The Knockoff Economy: How Imitation Sparks Innovation, authors  Kal Raustiala and Christopher Sprigman explore copycats in fashion, cuisine, comedy, fonts, finance, music and even football through a fascinating legal lens!  The book is available at Gallagher Law Library in the Classified Stacks at KF3080 .R38 2012.  

If you don't have the time to check out the book, visit the Knockoff Economy blog for some shorter (but still interesting) notes on copycats!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Law Librarians Take Seattle

Hundreds of law librarians will converge on the Washington State Convention Center this weekend for the 106th Annual Meeting of the American Association of Law Libraries.

What? You didn't realize that there are hundreds of law librarians? Yes indeed; thousands, in fact!
Today, with over 5,000 members, the Association represents law librarians and related professionals who are affiliated with a wide range of institutions: law firms; law schools; corporate legal departments; courts; and local, state and federal government agencies.
The librarians will be attending programs on a wide variety of topics. Here are just a few program titles:
  • American Indian Law: Access and Collections, featuring our own Bob Anderson
  • Copyright and Digital Images: "If It's on the Web, I Can Use It, Right?"
  • iCame, iSaw, iConquered: Our Year with the iPad
  • Lifting the Veil: How to Effectively Research Foreign Customary Law
  • Respect for Marriage: Equal Protection for Same-Sex Couples in Washington State and Before the U.S. Supreme Court, UW Law professor Peter Nicolas is speaking
  • State Constitutions: Current, Historical, and How They Change
Committee meetings, the Exhibit Hall, social functions, and lots of networking are also on the agenda. The event begins on Saturday, July 13th, and ends on Tuesday, July 16.

The UW School of Law and the Gallagher Law Library are hosting a reception for the Academic Law Libraries group on Sunday evening. We expect about 300 people and are looking forward to showing many of them our beautiful Library.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Library Closed for the 4th, Pleads the 5th

Photo credit: Our Flag (2007)
Gallagher Law Library will be closed on July 4th and 5th to honor Independence Day.

The Library will also be closed on Saturday, July 6, as it is closed every Saturday during the Summer Quarter

On Sunday, July 7th, the Library will be open on its regular schedule: 12noon - 5pm. The Reference Office will be open from 1 - 4pm.

And on July 8th, the Reference Office will open at 10am instead of the usual 9am.

Were you aware that our Stars and Stripes has "anatomy"? I discovered the graphic when I searched USA.Gov for an image of the flag.

Our Flag is a 50-page booklet issued by the Joint Committee on Printing, a committee of the U.S. Congress. Browse through this handy publication to cull fascinating facts about the history of the flag, the relevant laws and regulations, approved displays in various situations, and other topics.

Have a Happy 4th! And if you celebrate by having a 5th of any alcoholic beverage, don't drink and drive!