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Category Archives: Legal Research

Know Your Rights: Whistleblower Protections for Federal Sector Employees

POGO – Know Your Rights: Whistleblower Protections for Federal Sector Employees.

“The Project On Government Oversight (POGO) has put together this web resource to help federal sector employees learn more about their whistleblower rights. The information here is just a starting point and is not legal advice. The legal information POGO provides closely follows the statutory language where it exists. Agencies and courts may interpret the law differently and more narrowly than one might assume. For legal advice specific to one’s circumstances, seek the services of a qualified and experienced attorney. Blowing the whistle is risky business. There is a patchwork of legal protections for federal sector employees who blow the whistle. The relevant law depends on where you work in the federal government, and whether you are a government employee, uniformed member of the armed services, or contractor. Knowing what law one falls under matters since the protections vary from law to law from what types of disclosures are protected to where one can legally disclose problems. This web resource is focused on whistleblower protections for federal sector employees who have made or are considering making disclosures related to their workplace. But there are other legal protections that may be more relevant to a federal sector employee’s question about their free speech rights. For instance, the Supreme Court has held that the First Amendment generally protects government and contractor employees from job loss for speech in their capacity as private citizens on matters of public concern. But there are limitations, including an exception for speech made pursuant to official job duties. Again, seek the services of a qualified and experienced attorney for legal advice….”

Domestic Terrorism Prosecutions Outnumber International

Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse: “While terrorism prosecutions involving extremists affiliated with ISIS grab the headlines, international terrorists make up only a small proportion of all terrorism prosecutions that take place each year in the United States. The latest available data from the Justice Department show that during the first eleven months of FY 2017 less… Continue Reading

Appellate court rules tracking cellphones without a warrant unconstitutional

Washington Examiner: “The D.C. Court of Appeals ruled on Thursday [September 21, 2017] that it is unconstitutional for law enforcement to use certain technologies that allow the tracking of a suspect’s cellular phone without a warrant. The ruling reversed a decision of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia that allowed police to use… Continue Reading

DOJ, 18F Report on “Discovery Phase” of National FOIA Portal

“Today, OIP is pleased to announce the results of its collaboration with GSA’s 18F team on the discovery phase of development of a National FOIA Portal.  As we enter development, we want to again solicit both public and agency participation in providing feedback on our work. The FOIA Improvement Act of 2016 directed the Office… Continue Reading

Guardian – Access denied: wheelchair metro maps versus everyone else’s

theguardianuk: “From Paris to New York, we’ve matched metro maps against versions that only include fully accessible stations. The results are discouraging – but are any cities doing it right?” “117 out of 472 New York subway stations are fully accessible.” Continue Reading

Court upholds Illinois biometrics law on use of facial scans

Fortune – “A federal judge this week delivered a key victory for customers who claim the digital scrapbook company Shutterfly violated their privacy by collecting scans of their faces without permission. In a 19-page opinion, U.S. District Judge Joan Gottschall rejected Shutterfly’s argument that an Illinois state law, which restricts how companies can use biometric… Continue Reading

LC – An App to Answer Your Questions about the Constitution

Margaret M. Wood, legal reference librarian in the Law Library. “Two years ago, in honor of Constitution Day—celebrated annually on September 17—I wrote a post about the publication “Constitution of the United States: Analysis and Interpretation,” also referred to as the “Constitution Annotated.” Along with the U.S. Code, it is one of my favorite work… Continue Reading

Twitter releases new transparency report

“With our 11th biannual Twitter Transparency Report, Twitter has expanded on work announced in our last #TTR to share more information about government Terms of Service requests we receive and how we handle such requests. In March of 2017, we introduced a new section covering government TOS reports, but it was limited to government requests… Continue Reading

CRS – Domestic Terrorism: An Overview

Domestic Terrorism: An Overview, Jerome P. Bjelopera, Specialist in Organized Crime and Terrorism. August 21, 2017. “The emphasis of counterterrorism policy in the United States since Al Qaeda’s attacks of September 11, 2001 (9/11) has been on jihadist terrorism. However, in the last decade, domestic terrorists—people who commit crimes within the homeland and draw inspiration… Continue Reading

Infographic comparing Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Other Cryptos

Are you confused by the language, structure, operations and frameworks that comprise the growin cryptocurrency universe? Visual Capitalist “…worked with social trading network eToro to come up with an infographic that breaks down the major differences between these coins all in one place.” See also the New York Times – In China’s Hinterlands, Workers Mine… Continue Reading

NYT – Facebook Faces a New World as Officials Rein In a Wild Web

The web is not as open as it once was, with nation-states exerting their power over the internet: “…Facebook encapsulates the reasons for the internet’s fragmentation — and increasingly, its consequences. The company has become so far-reaching that more than two billion people — about a quarter of the world’s population — now use Facebook… Continue Reading

New on LLRX – AI And The Rule Of Law

Via LLRX – AI And The Rule Of Law – Our exposure to and reliance upon an increasingly ubiquitous range of technology is intertwined with issues related to intellectual property law. With smartphone cameras used to capture and share what their respective creators otherwise claim as intellectual property, to the devices, services and applications that… Continue Reading