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Category Archives: Legal Research

Is This the Beginning of the End of the Internet?

The Atlantic: “Occasionally, something happens that is so blatantly and obviously misguided that trying to explain it rationally makes you sound ridiculous. Such is the case with the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals’s recent ruling in NetChoice v. Paxton. Earlier this month, the court upheld a preposterous Texas law stating that online platforms with more than 50 million monthly active users in the United States no longer have First Amendment rights regarding their editorial decisions. Put another way, the law tells big social-media companies that they can’t moderate the content on their platforms. YouTube purging terrorist-recruitment videos? Illegal. Twitter removing a violent cell of neo-Nazis harassing people with death threats? Sorry, that’s censorship, according to Andy Oldham, a judge of the United States Court of Appeals and the former general counsel to Texas Governor Greg Abbott. A state compelling social-media companies to host all user content without restrictions isn’t merely, as the First Amendment litigation lawyer Ken White put it on Twitter, “the most angrily incoherent First Amendment decision I think I’ve ever read.” It’s also the type of ruling that threatens to blow up the architecture of the internet. To understand why requires some expertise in First Amendment law and content-moderation policy, and a grounding in what makes the internet a truly transformational technology. So I called up some legal and tech-policy experts and asked them to explain the Fifth Circuit ruling—and its consequences—to me as if I were a precocious 5-year-old with a strange interest in jurisprudence…”

Social Security: What Would Happen If the Trust Funds Ran Out?

CRS Report – RL33514| Social Security: What Would Happen If the Trust Funds Ran Out?: “Federal Old-Age and Survivors Insurance (OASI) Trust Fund and the Federal Disability Insurance (DI) Trust Fund. Under their intermediate assumptions and undercurrent law, the Social Security trustees project that the OASI trust fund will become depleted in 2034 and the DI… Continue Reading

Google is making it easier to find search results from Reddit and other forums

Engadget: “Google is making it easier to find search results from Reddit and other forum sites. The search engine is adding a new module that will surface discussions happening on forums across the web for queries that may benefit from crowd-sourced answers. The “discussions and forums” module will surface relevant posts from sites like Reddit… Continue Reading

Supreme Court Trust, Job Approval at Historical Lows

Gallup: “Forty-seven percent of U.S. adults say they have “a great deal” or “a fair amount” of trust in the judicial branch of the federal government that is headed by the Supreme Court. This represents a 20-percentage-point drop from two years ago, including seven points since last year, and is now the lowest in Gallup’s… Continue Reading

GAO – Federal Agencies Lack Senior Leadership to Effectively Implement Privacy Programs

EPIC: “A Government Accountability Office (GAO) report, prepared in consultation with privacy experts including EPIC Senior Counsel John Davisson, canvassed 24 federal government agencies and found that most have failed to fully implement statutory privacy requirements. The GAO found that despite the massive amount of personally identifiable information (PII) collected by these agencies and the… Continue Reading

Greenhouse Gas Mitigation: CRS Products

Greenhouse Gas Mitigation: CRS Products, September 20, 2022: “…CRS selected its products below by searching CRS.gov using the terms climate and greenhouse gas and through discussion with CRS subject matter experts. Products were selected from the search results and included here if they met the search criteria, contained substantial discussion of GHG mitigation, and have… Continue Reading

US politicians tweet far more misinformation than those in the UK and Germany

The Conversation: “Politicians from mainstream parties in the UK and Germany post far fewer links to untrustworthy websites on Twitter and this has remained constant since 2016, according to our new research. By contrast, US politicians posted a much higher percentage of untrustworthy content in their tweets, and that share has been increasing steeply since… Continue Reading

What is proof-of-stake? A computer scientist explains a new way to make cryptocurrencies, NFTs and metaverse transactions

Via LLRX – What is proof-of-stake? A computer scientist explains a new way to make cryptocurrencies, NFTs and metaverse transactions – Prof. Scott Ruoti, briefs us on yet another new component in Digital Ledger Technology. Proof-of-stake is a mechanism for achieving consensus on a blockchain. Blockchain is a technology that records transactions that can’t be deleted or… Continue Reading

Awesome Archives

Awesome Archives on Tumblr: “A celebration of archives, archival material, and the amazing history that they protect. Expect to see a lot of strange historical finds, unique materials, and archives in the news. I throw up 5 posts a day….Sometimes I’m looking for something online – often “how to” articles – and I want to… Continue Reading

CREW urges Judicial Conference to implement judicial ethics rules

CREW: “The Judicial Conference—a national policymaking body for the federal courts…should implement a comprehensive prohibition on all federal judges and Supreme Court Justices owning or trading individual securities and develop a strong code of conduct for the Supreme Court. In a letter sent [September 20, 2022], CREW urges the Judicial Conference to act swiftly to… Continue Reading

The Data Liberation Project

Jeremy Singer-Vine: ” The Data Liberation Project is a new initiative I’m launching today to identify, obtain, reformat, clean, document, publish, and disseminate government datasets of public interest. Vast troves of government data are inaccessible to the people and communities who need them most. These datasets are inaccessible. The Process: Identify: Through its own research,… Continue Reading

Using an Infographic to Encourage Deep Reading

Via LLRX – Using an Infographic to Encourage Deep Reading – Prof. Cindy Guyer, Senior Law Librarian and Adjunct Assistant Professor Law at the University of Southern California Gould School of Law, has been experimenting with incorporating infographics in her teaching to present information and knowledge visually, using graphs, flowcharts, timelines, and diagrams, which are components of… Continue Reading