Morris Leo Cohen died on Saturday, December 18, 2010. He had recently celebrated his 83rd birthday. More than a few of us call Morris mentor. During his years at Yale, Harvard, Penn and SUNY Buffalo, he attracted disciples with ease and grace. I trust that a round of tributes will follow his passing, but one aspect that may be neglected is the symbolic value of it for librarianship. Morris was the last great scholar bibliographer of his generation in American law librarianship. Not a scholar who stepped into the role of librarian, Morris was a scholarly bibliographer, a man of . . . [more]
Archive for the ‘Legal Information’ Columns
[This is the third in a series of articles about the trends, theories, principles and realities that have influenced the redesign of the new library of Osgoode Hall Law School – part of the renovation and rebuilding of the law school currently underway. This instalment is written in response to Eric Appleby’s recent post on “The Future of Headnotes”.
When you walk into an academic law library, the first that meets your eye is row upon row of bookstacks as far as the eye can see, filled with published law reports. It’s an impressive sight; and, in the 21st . . . [more]
My last column addressed an odd feature of current legal periodical publishing: a number of legal publishers do not expose interoperable metadata for their periodical articles on the free Web, and do not sell or license individual periodical articles online.
We saw that these practices seem unusual because they are inconsistent with industry trends, and because these publishers already use digital publishing processes, have access to free or low-cost ejournal platform and ecommerce software, often have access within their own corporate families to expertise in implementing such software and services, and, given the size of the global market and the . . . [more]
Toronto’s first Webcom was held on November 3rd. The conference, in its ninth iteration in Montréal, brought together a diverse group from various information professions – communications and technology folk rubbed shoulders with librarians, consultants and marketing executives. We were treated to an equally diverse range of speakers. The program looked at social networking, collaboration and a wealth of case studies in the application of social media in the enterprise. Connie Crosby did us proud with a lightning presentation of social media tools in the enterprise.
Shel Holtz started the day with Tactical Transparency : the Value of Access to . . . [more]
There have been a couple of blogposts recently that are worth noting – the first one marks the impending breaking of the $1 billion mark for e-books – posted on James McQuivey’s blog – and a related post a few days earlier on Law Librarian Blog about the release of 40,000 e-books by Springer without any DRM (Digital Rights Management) restrictions.
Our library is like many others – we have purchased e-books to provide the best range of resources to our academics and students. These are in addition to the paper, because we are lucky and for the UK at . . . [more]
On September 26, 2010, the New York Times ran a front-page story concerning outsourcing public libraries to private corporations. This article chilled me to the marrow of my bones for several reasons. First, the library that triggered the article is in Santa Clarita, California. This is not a city that is drowning in deficits and grasping for straws. It is a city that is in the black. Santa Clarita’s move is made in the clear light of day, for purposes of future planning.
Second, Frank Pezzanite, the director of Library Systems and Services, the corporation which, if taken as a . . . [more]
Twitter is a major source for breaking international legal news. It is often the first place where you can find links to recent court cases, new legislation, and international documents. Many blogs have Twitterfeeds so you’re immediately alerted to new posts. Twitter can inform you about legal developments worldwide and upcoming conferences. You can use Twitter to find out about new books, and new law library acquisitions. You can also track news from foreign sources and in foreign languages. Twitter is not only a great source for law, library, and technology news, it also gives you a way to network . . . [more]
Over the last five years, electronic resources have become an increasingly more important part of the services provided by law libraries. Administering electronic database subscriptions can be a time-consuming process; managing an electronic subscription includes, but is not limited to, evaluating the resource, negotiating a contract, training users, dealing with passwords, and billing back costs (if necessary). This column discusses a specific aspect of managing database subscriptions: the advantages and disadvantages of using individual user IDs rather than organization-wide passwords.
One problem with the growing number of online database subscriptions is the associated increase in the number of passwords that . . . [more]
Access to justice is a hot topic, having been discussed on Slaw in the past few months here and here. Here in Winnipeg, the catalyst was the release of the 2008 United Nations Report, Making the Law Work for Everyone. Our response to this report is the Legal Help Centre.
Executive Director Karen Dyck envisions the Legal Help Centre as a place "… to assist disadvantaged members of our community to access and exercise their legal and social rights." This agency will help people determine their next course of action in solving a problem, which may not even . . . [more]
[This is the second in a series of articles about the trends, theories, principles and realities that have influenced the redesign of the library of Osgoode Hall Law School --- part of the renovation and rebuilding of the law school currently underway.]
The chief glory of the Osgoode Hall Law School Library is its world-class collection of early Anglo-American legal materials, including the largest collection of legal Canadiana anywhere. Despite pressures to recover space and plans to send some materials offsite (see my earlier column) when the Osgoode Library moves into its new facility in Summer 2011, we . . . [more]
Like many of my North American colleagues, I keep up with new law journal articles by subscribing to alerts from Current Law Journal Content (CLJC), the free table of contents service published by the Washington & Lee School of Law Library and the University of Texas Tarlton Law Library. Particular characteristics of certain of the commercially published law journals indexed in CLJC have recently puzzled me: the practices of these journals seem out of step with today's norms for distributing metadata and content of scholarly and professional articles. Here's what I've seen:
- Many of the articles in these
. . . [more]
“Not failure, but low aim, is crime” – James Russell Lowell (1819-91)
Innovation, and creating innovative environments, was a common theme of my reading this summer. It wasn’t planned – it just seemed to be a topic that many of my favourite professional development sources. I thought I’d take this column to pass along some of the key messages from that reading.
Fail early, fail often, fail small
It’s true that we learn more from our mistakes than we do from our successes. But failing early in the process of developing a product or service allows us to . . . [more]