The Ginger (Law) Librarian

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In early March, the University of California, one of the largest research institutions in the world, blew up negotiations with Elsevier, one of the largest publishers of research articles in the world. The university would no longer pay Elsevier millions of dollars a year to subscribe to its journals. It simply walked away. Despite months of contract negotiations, Elsevier was unwilling to meet UC’s key goal: securing universal open access to UC research…
In spring 2017, I briefly discussed the problem with scholarship impact factor in law as a response to a recommendation by a law professor to create a rankings methodology based on Google Scholar citation. Well it seems that USNews may have read that article because USNews is now asking each law school for the names and other details of its fall 2018 full-time tenured and tenure-track faculty. USNews plans to link the names of each…
As we are increasingly aware, the ethical Duty of Technology Competence requires lawyers to keep abreast of “changes in the law and its practice, including the benefits and risks associated with relevant technology.” To date, 35 states have adopted the duty. In a previous post, I highlighted the risks of blindly relying on algorithmic results (relevant technology) as a potential violation of the Duty of Technology Competence. We now have case law from…
If you’re into algorithms, you should absolutely subscribe to the MIT Technology Review newsletter called The Algorithm. Earlier this week, the folks at The Algorithm asked “what is AI, exactly?” The answer is reproduced below. The question may seem basic, but the answer is kind of complicated. In the broadest sense, AI refers to machines that can learn, reason, and act for themselves. They can make their own decisions when faced with new situations,…
If you’re into algorithms, you should absolutely subscribe to the MIT Technology Review newsletter called The Algorithm. Earlier this week, the folks at The Algorithm asked “what is AI, exactly?” The answer is reproduced below. The question may seem basic, but the answer is kind of complicated. In the broadest sense, AI refers to machines that can learn, reason, and act for themselves. They can make their own decisions when faced with new situations,…
As a member of the AALL State of the Profession Survey Advisory Group, I am excited that the survey has been released! The Advisory Group is comprised of librarians from all types of law libraries with the purpose of designing a survey to assess the current state of the profession. The State of the Profession Survey will document the current landscape of law libraries, specific to each library type, and will provide benchmarking in…
As a member of the AALL State of the Profession Survey Advisory Group, I am excited that the survey has been released! The Advisory Group is comprised of librarians from all types of law libraries with the purpose of designing a survey to assess the current state of the profession. The State of the Profession Survey will document the current landscape of law libraries, specific to each library type, and will provide benchmarking in…
At the Ohio Regional Association of Law Libraries (ORALL) Annual Meeting, as I presented on the duty of technology competence in the algorithmic society, an astute law librarian asked (paraphrasing), “how does fake news play into this?” That question gave rise to a flurry of brain activity, as I considered how Google, for example, ranks relevancy, the rise of fake news, and the ability of users to spot fake news sources — particularly for…
At the Ohio Regional Association of Law Libraries (ORALL) Annual Meeting, as I presented on the duty of technology competence in the algorithmic society, an astute law librarian asked (paraphrasing), “how does fake news play into this?” That question gave rise to a flurry of brain activity, as I considered how Google, for example, ranks relevancy, the rise of fake news, and the ability of users to spot fake news sources — particularly for…
In a recent survey conducted by the Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System (IAALS), a wide array of legal employers ranked the legal skills and professional competencies and characteristics that they believe new lawyers most need to succeed. (There is a detailed accounting of the study’s results and an explanation of the study’s role within IAALS’s broader project in the summer 2018 edition of The Bar Examiner, pp. 17-26.) The results…