Juror Searches Wikipedia

by Sarah Prosory 17. December 2010 08:49

This morning I saw this Slashdot.org article about a mistrial declared in Florida because a juror searched Wikipedia for a term that was unknown to her. She was "just looking up a phrase". Despite numerous warnings from the judge to jurors to not research the case, the juror brought what she found on Wikipedia to the jury room.

This is nothing new. Back in January of 2010, a murder case was thrown out because a juror looked up a definition on Wikipedia as well. The Washington Post wrote a very good article about how technology has caused more trouble for jurors who need to refrain from using it while serving on a jury.

My pondering is... will jury rules need to change to adjust to our technology-filled world? Should lawyers provide definitions/more information to confused jurors, so that jurors don't need to feel that they should look things up themselves? All it takes is a Google search on a smartphone and they have their confusion resolved. Give your comments below!

Chocolate Library?

by Sarah Prosory 16. December 2010 09:28

In New York, a small business owner is in dispute over the name of his store. The name in question? Chocolate Library. His choice in name has been rejected over the idea that it will confuse or mislead people into thinking it was an actual library. A law in New York since 2006 states that the commissioner for education must be consented for use of the word "library" among other words in a certificate of incorporation or company name.

Curious, I checked Westlaw for this law. Within the Westlaw Directory I selected U.S. State Materials, then I did a search for New York. I selected New York Statutes Annotated (NY-ST-ANN). I did a natural language search: commissioner of education consent to company registration name library. The third result down gave me the following explanation:

Effective January 1, 2006, an LLC may not use words, such as “school,” “education,” “college,” “university,” “museum,” “arboretum,” “historical society,” “library” or other term restricted by Section 224 of the Education Law, or any abbreviation or derivative of any such word, in its name without the consent of the Commissioner of Education. This provision is subdivision (i) of Section 204. In addition, Section 216 of the Education Law was simultaneously amended by adding an undesignated paragraph which provides that a company (which would include an LLC) may not knowingly use, advertise or transact business with the word “museum” or “arboretum” in its name unless authorized by special charter or the Board of Regents. An LLC that had been using either “museum” or “arboretum” in its name prior to the January 1, 2006 effective date of this provision had until December 31, 2006 to obtain the requisite consent to use such word. A violation of Section 204(i) would be a misdemeanor.

(Links require Westlaw login credentials. From: McKinney's Limited Liability Company Law § 204)

Read the article here from the New York Times.

What do you think? Should the State Education Department have the right to consent over names of corporations or companies? Comment below!

Blogs Every Law Student Should Monitor

by Ted McClure 23. November 2010 13:09

If you are not monitoring the following blawgs, you are falling behind:

LAW.COM (start at http://www.law.com/jsp/law/rss.jsp)

JURIST - Paper Chase (http://jurist.law.pitt.edu/paperchase/)

SCOTUSBLOG (start at http://www.scotusblog.com/2010/11/scotusblog-4-0-and-the-rss-feeds-feature/)

Except for Paper Chase (which is not terribly burdensome), each of these blawgs permits you to narrow your subscription to the news you need. There may be other sources you need to follow based on the courses you are taking and any research you are involved in (see http://www.blawg.com/ or http://www.abajournal.com/blawgs/by_topic/), but every student needs to follow these three.

Ted McClure, Faculty Services Law Librarian

Phoenix Law Review Now Available Online!

by Sarah Prosory 22. November 2010 09:44

Picture source: PSL Docket 11-19-10

Happy Monday everyone!

Did you know you can access the Phoenix Law Review online? Head over to the Phoenix Law homepage, select Academics, and then select Law Review. Or for direct access click here. Read volumes 1 and 2, and volume 3 which is issued in two parts: Arizona Government and Legal Education. This is a valuable resource, as HeinOnline only has volume 1 of the Phoenix Law Review and Westlaw and LexisNexis do not have the publication at all.

Also, the Phoenix Law Review is having a Spring 2011 Write-On Competition. This competition is open to all students who have completed at least 25 credit hours by the end of summer classes, have at least two semesters of law school left, have completed Lawyering Process 1 & 2, and have a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.50. If you are interested in entering the competition, add the Phoenix Law Review Spring 2011 Write-On Competition TWEN page (must have access to Westlaw and be a PSL student to do so). Details for how to enter will be on the TWEN page at 1:00 PM on December 11, 2010.

Enjoy the short week & read the Phoenix Law Review during the long weekend!

How Google Works

by Rob 17. November 2010 12:03

How Google Works.

Infographic by the Pay Per Click Blog

Tags:

Research | Web

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