Jim Bishop, 2L, has won an iPad from BNA!  He registered to receive BNA updates, along with thousands of other law students across the country.  And Jim was the winner!

If you want to receive BNA updates from US Law Week or on topics from banking to tax, labor law to mergers and acquisitions – go to http://library2.lawschool.cornell.edu/bna/subj/ and sign up for your choice of e-mail summaries.

Roubini logoCornell has joined the Roubini Global Economics University Program to provide faculty and students with access to what The Economist magazine dubbed "the world's most important economic website." This provides you with RGE's rich and timely research and analysis and unique understanding of the modern global economy.  RGE provides insight into macroeconomic developments along with citations and readings which act as pathways for scholars, policymakers and future business leaders who need to pursue their ideas to the next level.  Features include:

  • Critical Issues: Identifies key questions essential to the research process, seeking out viewpoints beyond the consensus
  •  Economic Research/RGE Analysis: Deep-dive analysis into factors driving global finance developed internally by a team of 40+ economists
  • EconoMonitors: Blog posts by Nouriel Roubini, RGE Analysts and an outside network of top independent contributors in global economics
  • Daily Digest: Timely coverage of developments that are shaping global markets right now
  • RGE Partner Content: Reports and white papers sourced from leading economic think tanks and world-recognized economic organizations.

At the Roubini website you will be invited to register for a personal account.  From off campus, access Roubini using the library catalog link - http://resolver.library.cornell.edu/misc/7060771.  Hat tip to Donald Schnedeker, Librarian at Cornell School of Hotel Administration, for this information.

Getting the Deal ThroughWant to know about corporate governance in Russia? Or copyright in Italy? Use our new database called Getting the Deal Through. The database is an online version of a series of books dealing with business issues in 43 areas of law, such as e-commerce, anti-corruption regulation, product liability and securities. Information is conveyed in a Q&A format written by practitioners in each country. You can compare information on specific topics across 100 or so jurisdictions or browse all the Q&As on a topic in your selected jurisdiction. The Q&As are written in a straightforward style which makes this comparative law resource an easy read. You can find “Getting the Deal Through” in the Corporate and Securities link in our collection of Online Legal Resources.

PACER is an online database for downloading copies of federal court filings: complaints, answers, motions, etc.  Trouble is, it costs 8 cents per page to download a document.  8 cents may not seem like a lot, but it adds up quickly.  PACER also charges 8 cents to look at a page of search results.  PACER isn't the most user-friendly database--you can't search the full text of documents.  You can pretty much only search by party name, court, and docket number, so you have to know what you are looking for.  Critics of PACER think the government is overcharging for the service because it makes a sizable profit off documents that are public record (one of the rare government services that actually makes money).

A team of talented people at the Center for Information Technology Policy at Princeton developed RECAP (PACER spelled backwards) to help researchers get federal filings for free.  RECAP is a Firefox extension (a bit of code that adds functionality to an Internet browser) that automatically archives PACER documents when people who have RECAP download them.  Then, if you have RECAP, you can search PACER to see which documents have already been downloaded and are available for free.

Now it is even easier to find free federal case filings because the stand-alone RECAP Archive is available--no PACER account or RECAP add-on needed.  Pulling up the docket for a case lets you see which documents are available to download for free and which must be purchased through PACER.  The Archive is easy to use.  Let the RECAP team know if you encounter a bug or have an idea to improve the site. Note that you still can't search the full text of the filings, only the docket (Hat tip to Erika Wayne at Stanford for posting the clarification).

The Archive has some interesting features, like the ability to add tags to dockets and link related cases together.  The tags didn't seem very helpful because I could not limit my search to specific tags.  I'm not sure that people will add enough tags to make tags useful for finding cases.

An important problem to consider when using court filings from PACER is the availability of personal information like bank accounts and social security numbers in some documents.  Sensitive information should be redacted before documents are uploaded into the system but often isn't due to the huge volume of documents handled by the courts.  RECAP's servers scan documents for social security numbers, but other sensitive information is difficult to identify through automated processes (e.g., names of minor children).  RECAP asks that documents with sensitive information be brought to their attention.  Ultimately this problem is best fixed by the courts, possibly by limiting the inclusion of sensitive information to one designated filing type for all cases and keeping those documents in a separate, secure system.  Courts should also consider abandoning entirely the use of paper documents for sensitive information in favor of an electronic database.

If you download documents from PACER, consider installing the RECAP add-on so you can contribute to the open access of information.

HeinOnline World Constitutions Illustrated world logoHeinOnline's World Constitutions Illustrated is a great new resource for comparative constitutional law research.  It contains the current constitution for every country; past constitutions; substantial constitutional histories for the United Kingdom, France, Brazil and Colombia (among others); more than 800 classic books about constitutional law; more than a dozen legal periodicals focused on constitutional law; links to scholarly articles and online resources, and bibliographies of important works.  Every country is linked directly to its primary and secondary resources; for instance, you can go to France and view all the resources related to the constitutional and political development of the country, all in one place.  The publisher invites librarians, scholars, and constitutional law experts from all over the world to contribute their works and knowledge to help continue building the constitutional development for every country.

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