Sunday, June 27, 2010

World Cup Courts in South Africa: Efficient But Costly

Determined not to have crime disrupt the World Cup, the South African Government established special courts fifty-six courts in the various cities hosting World Cup Games. The amount allocated to cover the costs of these courts is 45 million Rand, approximately 6 million U.S. dollars. The courts are reportedly efficiently dealing out justice.

To read more about the courts or listen to the NPR story about the courts click here.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Amazon Granted Continuation Patent on Social Networking System

There has been quite a buzz over the award of a Patent 7,739,139 to Amazon for a computer system that "provides various services for assisting users in locating, and establishing contact relationships with, other users." However, as explained in TechDirt's Amazon 'Friends' Patent Office: Gets Social Networking Patent, Amazon has been awarded only a continuation patent.

Hat tip to Law Librarian Blog

Sexual Orientation and the Law Display

By Presidential Proclamation, June 2010 has been designated Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month.

Visit a display of resources on sexual orientation and the law outside the reference offices. The display also includes information regarding OCU Law's Lesbian and Gay Law Student Association and information on Department of Defense review of and Congressional repeal of the Don't Ask, Don't Tell Policy.

Friday, June 18, 2010

UPDATED: Canine DNA Database Breaks New Ground In Crackdown on Animal Cruelty

From an ASPCA Press Release: "NEW YORK--The nation's first criminal dog-fighting DNA database has been established by the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), The Humane Society of Missouri (HSMO) and the Louisiana SPCA (LA/SPCA), and will be maintained at the University of California, Davis (UC Davis) Veterinary Genetics Laboratory. Known as the Canine CODIS (Combined DNA Index System), the database is designed to help the criminal justice system investigate and prosecute dog fighting cases and address the growing problem of dog fighting using 21st century technology. "

Read more about Canine CODIS here.

*UPDATE* Please read the following article about the Canine CODIS database on CNN.

Photo Credit: Kim Nguyen

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Google's Collection of Unsecured Wi-Fi Data Prompts Investigations

In May, the Energy and Commerce Committee of US House of Representative sent a letter to Google inquiring about the "huge amounts of data sent over private Wi-Fi networks while documenting the streets of our country for its Google Street View Product." The letter expressed specific concern that "Google did not disclose until long after the fact that consumers' Internet use was being recorded, analyzed and perhaps profiled." Google's response indicates that it "mistakenly" collected the data and that "the data has never been used in any Google product or service, nor do we intend to use it."

According to a Jurist Legal News & Research, Google data collection is also a subject of investigation in Australia and Canada; and several other nations have also become interested in data collected by Google.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Law and the World Cup

Soccer enthusiast from legal communities around the world are looking for connections between the law and the World Cup; several blogs are writing about the intersection of law and the World Cup. See the Where the Law and Soccer Collide: At a Firm in Manchester and World Cup Offers South African Lawyers Chance to Shine. Employment Law advice about employees watching the world cup at work is available here.

While some are looking for existing connections, others are simply making new connections of their own. See the World Cup Trivia on the International Law Prof Blog.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

BP Purchases Sponsored Links for Search Terms Related to Oil Spill

Danny Sullivan, editor-in-chief of, in a June 8, 2010 interview on NPR's All Things Considered spoke about BP's purchase of sponsored links as results for certain search terms, including "oil spill" and searches including "BP". The sponsored links were purchased on both Yahoo and Google.

According to Sullivan, this cost of BP's effort to "contain the PR fallout" of the spill is unclear, but this is "how things are done on the Internet.

BP is not the only entity making use of the Internet in relation to the oil spill. For example, see Thursday's post regarding the Oil Spill Law Blog.

For more information, read or listen to the story on

New Orleans Law Firm Launches Oil Spill Blog

The Lavis Law Firm of New Orleans has launched the BP Oil Spill Law Blog. While the firm likely intends for the site to generate clients, Law Librarian Blog indicates that the site also offers helpful information to "folks affected by the disaster."

Advances in Animal Law

From : "Ten years ago, nine of the 196 law schools in the United States offered courses in animal law. Today, more than 90 universities do. That’s a huge advance in the outlook for legal protection for animals. In fact, professional interest in the field of animal law is outpacing the demand, at this point."

Read the rest of the article here.

Photo credit: Pat Miller

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

May Acquisition List

The Law Library acquired many new books during the month of May. Click on the link below to see the newest items in our collection. From this page, you can also find lists of the new books acquired over the last three months.

Monday, June 7, 2010

The Best Advice: Listen to Your Lawyers?

According to the ABA Journal Law News Now, in 1995, more than six years before the filing of the infamous gender-based discrimination suit against Wal-Mart, the firm of Akin Gump Strass Hauer & Feld reported that salaried men earned 19 percent more than women. The memo also reportedly made recommendations regarding Wal-Marts hiring practices. Some are questioning whether Wal-Mart could have "avoided the suit altogether" by taking the advice provided in the report.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

19th Edition of the Bluebook to Begin Shipping Today

According to, shipping of the Nineteenth Edition of the Bluebook has begun:

"We are now accepting orders for the Nineteenth Edition for The Bluebook! We will begin shipping on June 1. Please keep in mind that we will be experiencing a very high volume of orders during this time and all orders will be shipped on a first-come, first served basis..."

If you haven't already ordered the new edition, it is also available from other providers, including Hein. According to Hein's pre-order information, the "new edition retains the same basic approach to legal citation established by its predecessors. The layout has been updated to make information easier to access. Some citation forms have been expanded, elaborated upon, or modifies from Previous editions to reflect the ever-expanding range of authorities used in legal writing and to respond to suggestions from the legal community."