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Category Archives: Courts

Another commentary on Google Books

How Google Book Search Got Lost – Google Books was the company’s first moonshot. But 15 years later, the project is stuck in low-Earth orbit. Scott Rosenberg, April 11, 2017.

“…Two things happened to Google Books on the way from moonshot vision to mundane reality. Soon after launch, it quickly fell from the idealistic ether into a legal bog, as authors fought Google’s right to index copyrighted works and publishers maneuvered to protect their industry from being Napsterized. A decade-long legal battle followed — one that finally ended last year, when the US Supreme Court turned down an appeal by the Authors Guild and definitively lifted the legal cloud that had so long hovered over Google’s book-related ambitions. But in that time, another change had come over Google Books, one that’s not all that unusual for institutions and people who get caught up in decade-long legal battles: It lost its drive and ambition…”

Court of Appeals opinion – Google is not a generic name

Elliott v. Google, United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, No. 15-15809 D.C. No. 2:12-cv-01072-SMM – OPINION, May 16, 2017. “The panel affirmed the district court’s summary judgment in favor of Google, Inc., in an action under the Lanham Act, seeking cancellation of the GOOGLE trademark on the ground that it is generic.… Continue Reading

US Courts – Interactive Database Aids the Study of Judiciary Trends

“A recently enhanced database that houses information about civil and criminal federal cases dating to 1970 is now available to researchers and the public on the Federal Judicial Center’s website as part of a partnership with the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts. The interactive database contains docket information from district, appellate, and bankruptcy court… Continue Reading

Despite Hiring, Immigration Court Backlog and Wait Times Climb

“During the past 18 months, a total of 79 new judges have been appointed to the Immigration Court. Despite this spurt in hiring, it has not made a dent in the court’s mountainous backlog. Instead, the backlog along with wait times have steadily increased. As of the end of April 2017, the number of cases… Continue Reading

Courting Disaster: Climate Change and the Adjudication of Catastrophe

Weaver, R. Henry and Kysar, Douglas A., Courting Disaster: Climate Change and the Adjudication of Catastrophe (May 8, 2017). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2965084 “Do we court disaster by stretching the bounds of judicial authority to address problems of massive scale and complexity? Or does disaster lie in refusing to engage the jurisgenerative potential of courts… Continue Reading

Cardozo School of Law Trains Students as Advocates For Shifting Legal Landscape

“In response to unprecedented legal uncertainty in the first weeks of the Trump administration, Cardozo School of Law is offering new classes to prepare future lawyers for a shifting legal and political landscape…Cardozo School of Law is offering students a 10-week course called The First 100 Days: The Trump Administration and the Rule of Law.… Continue Reading

Science – Artificial intelligence prevails at predicting Supreme Court decisions

Matt Hudson – Science – May 2, 2017: “…A new study shows that computers can do a better job than legal scholars at predicting Supreme Court decisions, even with less information. Several other studies have guessed at justices’ behavior with algorithms. A 2011 project, for example, used the votes of any eight justices from 1953 to… Continue Reading

Legal Issues: Suing for Life’s Frustrations: Supreme Court Says Maybe

Pike, George H., Legal Issues: Suing for Life’s Frustrations: Supreme Court Says Maybe (July 1, 2016). Information Today, Volume 33, Issue 6, July/August 2016. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2963336 “Life can get frustrating sometimes. Losing a glove on a cold winter day, or opting not to bring an umbrella because the forecast said it would be… Continue Reading

Massive UAlbany death penalty archive goes digital

Daily Gazette: “During his life, M. Watt Espy searched libraries and courthouses across the country gradually building what is widely considered the most comprehensive record of executions in the country. For decades the archive sat in stacks of boxes in his Alabama home. Next year the archive, which is now housed on the far shelves… Continue Reading

DOJ defends USDA take-down of massive animal abuse database

Follow up to previous postings – Animal welfare information wiped from USDA website and Some animal welfare data removed from USDA site is restored – via Josh Gerstein – Politico – “The Justice Department is mounting a legal defense of one of the most-publicized counter-transparency moves of the new Trump administration: the Agriculture Department’s decision… Continue Reading

Federal Judge Blocks Trump’s Sanctuary Cities Order

FindLaw via Reuters  – “Like many federal judges before him, United States District Judge William H. Orrick of California’s Northern District has enjoined the federal government from enforcing one of President Donald Trump’s executive orders. Trump’s Executive Order 13768, “Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior of the United States,” has suffered the same fate as… Continue Reading

CJPP Launches Criminal Justice Debt Reform Builder

“Criminal justice debt – the result of fees and fines in the criminal justice system – has serious consequences. The Criminal Justice Debt Reform Builder brings transparency to this area of significant legal complexity: it gives easier access to state laws that govern criminal justice debt and suggests policy solutions through the Criminal Justice Policy… Continue Reading