Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Independence for Law Library Staff

The Law Library will be closed from Friday, July 3d through Sunday, July 5th in observance of Independence Day. The Library resumes regular summer quarter hours on Monday, July 6th.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Post-Grad Privileges

Photo credit: blog.dearmissj.com
Now that the excitement of commencement has ebbed at bit, some UW Law grads may be wondering if they can still enter the Law Library with their Husky Cards when the Library is closed.

The answer is Yes!! Your Husky cards will work in the card readers until August 1st. You are welcome to use the Library as you study for the bar exam.

What about access to the big three commercial online legal research services? See the section on "Summer & Post-Graduation Use" in the guide on Access to BloombergLaw, LexisAdvance & Westlaw Next.

What other services does the Law Library offer to graduates? See our page on Library Services for Law School Alumni.

And congratulations on this tremendous achievement!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Upcoming Changes to Library Hours

With final exams ending for 1Ls, the Library moves to its interim hours.

The Library will be closed Saturday, June 13 through Tuesday, June 16.

Wednesday, June 17 through Friday, June 19 the Library will be open from 8am to 5pm and the Reference Office will be open from 9am to 12noon and from 1 to 5 pm.

The Library will be closed again the weekend of Saturday, June 20 and Sunday, June 21.

When Summer Quarter classes begin on Monday, June 22, the Library will be open 8am until 7pm Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays and from 8am until 5pm Thursdays and Fridays. The Library will be closed on Saturdays and open on Sundays from 12noon until 5pm.

The interim hours for the Reference Office will be from 9am until 5pm Mondays through Fridays and from 1 until 4pm on Sundays.

In addition, the Library will be closed Friday, July 3 through Sunday, July 5 for the Independence Day holiday.

For future hours changes, consult the Law Library Hours page.

UW Law students have before- and after-hours access to the Library with their Husky cards. Please don't allow anyone you don't personally know take the elevator with you to L1 or into the Library.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Emojis and the Law - the (ㆆ‿ㆆ) and the ( ˘︹˘ )

While I am no stranger to emojis, researching this blog post opened my eyes to their prevalence, as well as their potential gavel implications.
What is an emoji? Emoji is a Japanese word meaning picture (e) + letter (moji). Just how prevalent is the use of emojis? About 500 emojis are sent out to the the twittersphere every second! For a realtime view of emoji usage on twitter go to emojitracker. Watch with delight as emoji are rapidly highlighted and their use totals continue to soar. Even the seemingly innocent emoji can have legal implications. Recently, during the Silk Road Trial, featuring the Dread Pirate Roberts, Judge Forrest instructed the jury to pay attention to an emoji that a prosecutor withheld when reading text from an internet post. Technology resource Wired highlighted several other cases in which emojis were relevant. For example, a New Yorker was charged for using emoji to make threats against police. In another case, a Pennsylvania man argued that threats made on Facebook towards his ex-wife should not be taken seriously because they concluded with an emoji smiley face sticking its tongue out. Even the Senate Floor is getting in on the action; Senator Chris Murphy, a Connecticut Democrat, recently introduced a shruggie when discussing health care reform. If you want to brush up on your emoji knowledge, you can skim an emoji dictionary or the emojisaurus. Also, you can visit the emoji governing body, the Unicode Consortium. Will you ever need to know about emojis when conducting legal research? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

P.S. Emojis and emoticons are fun to see, but they may present obstacles for those using screen readers. In addition to the emoji in the first paragraph of this post, the title has a smiling face and a frowning face, and there is a shruggie at the end of the post.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Gun Violence Awareness Day + New ProQuest Congressional Social Media Feature

A number of organizations have declared June 2 National Gun Violence Awareness Day, encouraging supporters to wear orange to symbolize the value of human life.

Media Matters (a partner in the campaign) reports on the National Rifle Association's reaction to the campaign:
The NRA's online magazine, America's 1st Freedom, lashed out at the campaign, calling it pointless in a May 30 post. On June 2, it encouraged readers to mark the day by buying a gun, saying, "If you see any friends or neighbors wearing orange, consider the possibility that they: a) don't support your right to self-defense; and b) have a rather naïve view of what constitutes real activism."
The ABA's Governmental Affairs office announced in this month's ABA Journal ABA joins medical organizations in advocating steps to curb gun violence. That position paper (joined by the American Academy of Family Physicians, the American Academy of Pediatrics, American College of

NSA's Collection Activities

A subject much in the news recently is the National Security Agency's "bulk collection of telephony metadata for domestic and international telephone calls."

A recent report from the Congressional Research Service considers the constitutionality of the authorizing provisions in the USA PATRIOT Act.

Note the URL below the image of the cover of the report. The report is found not on the website of the Congressional Research Service (CRS) or any other federal government website. Why? Because Congress has deliberately chosen not to make CRS reports available to the public.

Want to learn more? Check out the Gallagher guide on CRS Reports.

And what's up with the way that members of Congress often create acronyms and initialisms out of titles of statutes? Did you know that the full name of the USA PATRIOT Act is United and Strengthening American by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism?

Want to learn more about this phenomenon? My colleague reference librarian Mary Whisner wrote an interesting article on the topic. What's in a Statute Name?, 97 Law Libr. J. 557 (2005).