Reopened! Call for Grant Applications for Students and Newer Law Librarians

We really want to see some students and newer law librarians this year at the upcoming 2018 Annual Meeting in Baltimore, Maryland.   We have reopened the applications for CS-SIS Members that are students and newer law librarians apply for a registration grant to the annual meeting.

The purpose of the AALL CS-SIS Grants Program for Students and Newer Librarians is to provide financial assistance for newer librarians or students in library/information school or law school to attend the AALL annual meeting or a workshop offered at the annual meeting. Among the factors taken into consideration are qualities or activities that indicate the person shows promise of future involvement in the law library profession, especially those who are directly involved in providing technology support of any kind within law libraries.

Successful CS-SIS Grant awardees are expected to write an article about some aspect of their experience attending the AALL Annual Meeting and Conference in Baltimore.  The article may feature an in-depth review of one program attended or an overview of your whole conference experience, for example.

To apply for a grant, fill out the Newer Librarians form (attached to this blog post, not the email generated with this post) describing how you meet the criteria for the applicable grant to Kenton Brice, Chair of the CS-SIS Grants and Awards Committee, at kbrice@ou.edu. Applications are due via email by midnight on May 7, 2018.

Newer Lib Grant Application 2018

A Lawyer’s Duty to Understand Social Media

[Debbie the editor adds: John wrote this ages ago – my fault for the delay.]

At attorney disbarred for waging an online harassment campaign against the judges in two of her cases. A court attorney fired and publicly admonished for live tweeting a disciplinary hearing. A public defender suspended for 60 days, in part for revealing confidential client information on her blog. A judge removed from office for posting about his cases on a message board. But these are obvious breaches of the ethics rules. Surely an attorney can avoid a social media-induced breach of the ethical rules by just not posting?

Not so fast. Over half of states in the U.S. have adopted an ethical duty of technology competence for attorneys practicing in the state. But even where there is no explicit duty, an attorney has a duty of competence in any state adopting the ABA Model Rules of Professional Responsibility. Attorneys must be competent in any technology that affects their practice. Most law firms have a web site and many have social media accounts. Most lawyers are on at least one social network. And even if they do not participate on the internet, their clients probably do.

But guidance is available. Comprehensive social media guidelines from several jurisdictions, including New York, Pennsylvania, and the District of Columbia, offer guidance in seven major areas:

Competence: Attorneys must understand the workings of the social media sites they use, including their privacy policy and terms and conditions.

Advertising: Posts made on social media feeds may be considered attorney advertising under your jurisdiction’s rules. It may be necessary to review not only your own content but also posts made by others to your profiles. Rules about advertising specialties generally apply to LinkedIn profiles. Payments made to online referral services like Avvo may be considered unethical fee-splitting arrangements.

Furnishing legal advice through social media: Responding to legal questions on social media sites like Twitter and Facebook can open up a host of problems including breaching client confidentiality, inadvertent establishment of an attorney-client relationship, and conflicts of interest.

Use of social media material as evidence: Social media posts can be used as evidence, under traditional evidence rules. It must be properly admitted. Attorneys must properly instruct their clients on preservation of posts after litigation begins.

Communications with clients and others: Attorneys must act to protect confidential client information. This means not only keeping such communications from public sites like Twitter and Facebook, but possibly also assessing whether or not certain communications should be sent by email. In some jurisdictions, attorney responses to negative online reviews may not contain confidential client information. Attorneys must follow ethical and other rules when gathering information from social media sites: they may not deceive a party to gain access to their social media profiles or have others do so on their behalf, and they may not contact represented parties.

Researching jurors: Attorneys must not contact jurors if researching their online profiles. The notification that LinkedIn provides to users to let them know who has viewed their profile may be considered contact. Attorneys may be required to notify the court about any juror misconduct they find on a juror’s social media account.

Communications with judges: Contact with a judge on social media, if allowed, cannot be for the purpose of attempting to influence the judge.

Social media is a possible minefield, but attorneys ignore it at their peril. At a minimum, they must understand how their own use of social media fits within their ethical requirements. They must also understand their clients’ use of social media in order to competently advise them. Librarians are the most likely people in many organizations to understand how social media websites work and to be familiar with their terms and conditions.

Legal Technology Conferences in 2018

Going into my library school program, I already knew I wanted to learn about information technology, especially about its use in the legal field.  Now, as a fairly new information professional, I’m finding that there are just as many opportunities to continue learning outside of the classroom.  The question, then, becomes which opportunities fit my professional development goals.

So, of course, I did some research.

I’ve put together a (non-comprehensive) list of the law and library technology conferences happening in the U.S. this year.  Perhaps you’ll find something that fits your goals as well.

[Debbie the editor took too long to publish this so some of these great conferences are already past… but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t check out their websites or plan to go in 2019!]

  • Legaltech – LegalWeek, Jan. 30 – Feb. 1, New York, NY
    • LegalWeek is a conference with programming focused on mid-sized to large firms or corporate legal departments.  The Legaltech track discusses up-and-coming technology in all aspects of firm and practice management, ranging from cybersecurity to administrative tasks.
  • ABA TECHSHOW, Mar. 7 – Mar. 10, Chicago, IL
    • ABA TECHSHOW brings together vendors and industry experts to highlight the innovative use of technology at every step of the practice of law, from the lawyers still in training to imaginative digital start-ups.
  • Computers In Libraries, Apr. 17 – Apr. 19, Arlington, VA
    • Computers In Libraries is a conference focused on librarians in public or academic settings, particularly those that work with technology or instruction, not just those in the legal field.  There is a major emphasis on technological literacy and integrating new tools into library and patron practice.
  • SLA Annual Conference, June 9 – June 13, Baltimore, MD
    • The Special Library Association hosts librarians from a variety of disciplines and library settings, including legal, business, financial, etc.  The solutions and innovations from other fields can inspire new collaborative solutions or be adapted to issues faced by legal information professionals.
  • AALL Annual Conference, July 14 – July 17, Baltimore, MD
    • AALL gives law librarians and information professionals from all types of libraries an opportunity to discuss the newest legal technologies, from research tools to practice management and beyond, and how to best implement and provide instruction for these tools.
  • ILTACON, Aug. 19 – Aug. 23, National Harbor, MD
    • ILTACON typically caters to the large firm IT, KM, and Ops professionals covering topics that are innovative, practical, and technical.
  • Clio Cloud Conference, Oct. 4 – Oct. 5, New Orleans, LA
    • Although the Clio Cloud Conference is put on by the producers of the Clio practice management software, the programs feature top speakers focused on technological innovation and the future of the practice of law for every sized firm.
  • Internet Librarian, Oct. 16 – Oct. 18, Monterey, CA
    • Internet Librarian draws public, academic, and research librarians and educators from all disciplines to learn about innovative tools and research methods with an emphasis on encouraging digital information literacy.
  • KMWorld Conference, Nov. 6 – Nov. 8, Washington, DC
    • The KMWorld Conference is specifically focused on knowledge and content management and access at businesses and organizations in all fields.  The programming is helpful for beginners and veterans, information professionals and technology professionals.

For all the variety I discovered, there are still other opportunities, such as seminars or regional conferences, for staying informed about the latest in legal technology.

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CS-SIS Member Spotlight: Patricia Barbone

The Computing-Services Special Interest Section is made up of awesome law librarians doing interesting things.   The CS-SIS Member Spotlight is designed to shine light on our membership so that we can learn more about each other and stay connected.

CS-SIS Member Spotlight:  Patricia Barbone

Law Librarian in the Big Apple

Patricia Barbone has worked in law firm libraries for over 30 years and is currently the Director of Library Services at Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP in New York.  Prior to law librarianship, Patricia started as a business librarian at Booz Allen Hamilton and taps her business background often in her law firm work.  A native of New York and a fan of the theater, Patricia received her bachelor’s degree in literature and economics from SUNY and her master’s in library science from Queens College.

Now a manager, Patricia recalls the positive mentorship she received from Jean O’Grady when she began as a law librarian and continues to be inspired by many peers in our profession.  She remains satisfied in the career and considers law librarians to be the best group of people to work with as they are intelligent, curious, and open minded.  Patricia enjoys indulging in the news looking for information on how changing policies and politics will affect both the firm’s clients and the country at large.

Professional Connections

Patricia has served as president, vice-president, and treasurer of the Law Library Association of New York and as treasurer for the Private Law Library caucus.  Her interest in CS-SIS stems from her curiosity in new technology being used in law schools.  She commented that at times legal technology hits law schools first, and CS-SIS is a source of information on how people are implementing the technologies.  At other times, she noted that firms get access to technology first.  For instance, she was tapped to serve on Ravel’s Information Leadership Advisory Board.  An area of interest is the way algorithms are changing ‘search.’  A recent March 2018 ABA article, “Results May Vary: Which database a researcher uses makes a difference” by Susan Nevelow Mart made a big impact on Patricia. She comments, “It’s not just about what search terms you use anymore.  Now the algorithm your legal research provider uses could have more input than you do in your search results.  This will definitely affect what I recommend to our first year associates.”

Embracing Technology

While we may not get a chance to talk with this hard working librarian at AALL annual meetings due to her work obligations, Patricia and our law firm members are actively embracing technology in the firms.  She notes that many firm librarians are experimenting with artificial intelligence using the Fastcase Sandbox, and her firm is using a few of the leading docket analytics tools for early case assessment and business development.  She’s also working with ServiceNow to create a request tracking system and uses ResearchMonitor to monitor database usage, manage passwords, and make more informed acquisitions decisions.

Thanks to Patricia for her willingness to be interviewed for this CS-SIS member spotlight.   If you are interested in interviewing and writing a blog post about a CS-SIS member, please contact Tawnya Plumb at tplumb@uwyo.edu.  It is a great opportunity to learn about a fellow member.

Call for CS-SIS Annual Meeting Grants Applications

The CS-SIS Grants and Awards Committee is pleased to announce the call for Annual Meeting Grants Applications.  All CS-SIS Members are invited to apply for one of two Annual AALL Meeting and Conference Grants for the upcoming 2018 Annual Meeting in Baltimore, Maryland:

AALL CS-SIS Grant for Students and Newer Librarians:

The purpose of the AALL CS-SIS Grants Program for Students and Newer Librarians is to provide financial assistance for newer librarians or students in library/information school or law school to attend the AALL annual meeting or a workshop offered at the annual meeting. Among the factors taken into consideration are qualities or activities that indicate the person shows promise of future involvement in the law library profession, especially those who are directly involved in providing technology support of any kind within law libraries.

AALL CS-SIS Grant for Experienced Librarians:

The purpose of the AALL CS-SIS Grants Program is to provide financial assistance to librarians who have a demonstrated commitment to the law library profession, especially those who are directly involved in providing technology support of any kind within law libraries.

Grants will cover registration costs to attend the 2018 AALL Annual Meeting & Conference in Baltimore, Maryland, or registration fees for another educational event, such as CONNELL or a pre-conference workshop held in Baltimore, Maryland. All funds are provided by the AALL CS-SIS.

Successful CS-SIS Grant awardees are expected to write an article about some aspect of their experience attending the AALL Annual Meeting and Conference in Baltimore.  The article may feature an in-depth review of one program attended or an overview of your whole conference experience, for example.

To apply for a grant, fill out the requisite application (Newer Librarians or Experienced Librarians) describing how you meet the criteria for the applicable grant to Kenton Brice, Chair of the CS-SIS Grants and Awards Committee, at kbrice@ou.edu.  Applications are due via email by midnight on Tuesday, March 27, 2018.

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Call for Nominations – the Kenneth J. Hirsh Distinguished Service Award

The CS-SIS Grants & Awards Committee is pleased to make the call for nominations for the Kenneth J. Hirsh Distinguished Service Award for 2018!

The Kenneth J. Hirsh Distinguished Service Award honors a CS-SIS member who has made outstanding contributions to the SIS, to AALL, and who is well regarded for their service to the profession. The inaugural award recipient was Ken Hirsh, in whose honor the award is named.

Criteria:

  • Outstanding leadership through committee work, service on the executive board, involvement in special projects or other activities
  • Participation in professional development activities in furtherance of the section and its interests, including educational program planning and presentations
  • Involvement with mentoring activities to foster interest and participation in the section and its activities
  • Evidenced commitment to the section, its purpose, and its role within the association in furtherance of the law library profession

To be eligible for the award, a nominee must be an active or retired member of the CS-SIS.  Section officers are not eligible for this award during their term of office.  For a list of past award recipients, please check the CS-SIS website.

The CS-SIS Awards committee welcomes self-nominations, as well as nominations of your colleagues. To nominate yourself, or a colleague, send a nominating letter outlining how the nominee meets the criteria above to Kenton Brice, Chair of the CS-SIS Grants and Awards Committee, at kbrice@ou.edu.  Nominations are due by March 27, 2018.

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CS-SIS/PEGA-SIS Member Spotlight: Becka Rich

The Computing-Services Special Interest Section is made up of awesome law librarians doing interesting things.   The CS-SIS Member Spotlight is designed to shine light on our membership so that we can learn more about each other and stay connected.

The intersections between Special Interest Sections offer opportunities to expand our horizons and build on each other’s knowledge. The following member spotlight is written by Eve Ross, a member of Professional Engagement, Growth & Advancement Special Interest Section (PEGA-SIS), and focuses on Becka Rich, a member of both CS-SIS and PEGA-SIS (and ALL-SIS and RIPS-SIS and the Jewish Law Caucus).

CS-SIS/PEGA-SIS Member Spotlight: Becka Rich

Making Learning Fun

Becka Rich is Senior Associate Director and Adjunct Professor of Law at Nova Southeastern University.

Like many members of CS-SIS, Becka Rich is an early adopter. What she especially enjoys about her CS-SIS membership is the opportunity to learn about the newest technologies. By the same token, she was one of the earliest members of PEGA-SIS and has enjoyed watching this newest SIS develop its vision and gain its footing.

Becka believes librarians have a duty to mentor. She enjoys the opportunities PEGA-SIS offers to meet people who are new to the profession, and she works to provide them information through the PEGA-SIS blog. Similarly, she has presented at CS-SIS’ Cool Tools Café, showcasing the latest developments in technology to other law librarians.

As one interesting part of her work, Becka uses Twine to create “choose your own adventure” games that teach legal research skills. Her ambition is to create more games like this one that she created, to help students master concepts such as Boolean searching and researching administrative law.

In her personal life, she has recently completed a crochet AT-AT (from Star Wars) and is now working on a crochet Death Star (also from Star Wars). Becka is perfecting a recipe for sourdough bread, and read 150 books in 2017.

CS-SIS Member Spotlight: Anna Russell

The Computing-Services Special Interest Section is made up of awesome law librarians doing interesting things.   The CS-SIS Member Spotlight is designed to shine light on our membership so that we can learn more about each other and stay connected.

CS-SIS Member Spotlight:  Anna Russell

Oh, the Places You’ll Go

Here is a list of many of the places Anna has lived:  Wisconsin, Texas, Indiana, Rhode Island, Washington DC and Washington state, Bahrain, Coronado, CA (AKA paradise), and Anchorage, Alaska.

Now, here is a list of a few of Anna’s jobs:  naval officer, FBI intelligence analyst, academic law librarian, and federal court librarian.

How has she fit this all in?  Anna studied philosophy at the University of Notre Dame knowing that she wanted to continue her education, possibly in law.  To secure funding for these future studies, she joined the Navy and spent five years training, traveling, and getting out of her comfort zone.  With funding in hand, Anna looked into law school, although she knew that she had no interest in litigation.  At a prospective law school luncheon, Anna met the director of the law library and was persuaded to become a law librarian.  She attended law school at the University of San Diego while concurrently earning her M.L.I.S. from San Jose State University.  I asked how this was possible, and Anna had two answers.  1) She conceded that she didn’t have a job during her studies.  2) Her library program offered the flexibility of in-person and online courses which enabled Anna to complete law and library science programs at once.

With few law library jobs available in 2010, Anna went to work for the FBI as an intelligence analyst.  Before long, she accepted a job at her law school alma mater as an Electronic Resources Librarian where she worked for six years.  Although she enjoyed her job and supportive colleagues, her family was in transition and ready for adventure and cooler temperatures.  That’s when Alaska called.   The transition has gone well, and Anna has appreciated the warm welcome and guidance she has received from her new colleagues in the federal courts.  She is enjoying the various types of research she’s been assigned as a US Courts Librarian and is one of a handful of public law librarians in the state of Alaska.

 Interest in CS-SIS

Anna has been a CS-SIS member since 2011, and she finds Computing Services members to be a fantastic group of librarians with shared interests.  She appreciates the new and varied areas of technology discussed on the listserv and the helpful fixes members provide for Exam Soft and other software glitches.  She compares notes with others on what she has learned from the Cool Tools Café at AALL with enthusiasm.  Anna noted the strong connection between CS-SIS and CALI for academic law librarians, and she learned much about legal technology from CALI conferences as well.  Now that she is in a court setting, she is interested in web archiving and may look to CS-SIS resources and members for guidance on preserving court materials online.

 Future Plans

After transitioning from sunny, academic days in San Diego to majestic mountain days in Anchorage, Anna is looking forward to getting into a routine.  She is exploring her new role and identifying the best services she can provide in a court library environment.  Anna is also serving on the local arrangements committee for the WestPac chapter of AALL as Anchorage will be the host city for their annual meeting in the fall.  Anna invites us all to attend WestPac’s annual meeting in Alaska September 27-29, 2018.

 

Thanks to Anna Russell for her willingness to be interviewed for this CS-SIS member spotlight.   If you are interested in interviewing and writing a blog post about a CS-SIS member, please contact Tawnya Plumb at tplumb@uwyo.edu.  It is a great opportunity to learn about a fellow member.

 

Cool Tool Spotlight #9: Gail Mathapo on Zotero

This week’s featured tool will be the last video from AALL 2017. The tool is Zotero, a free online citation tracker. Gail Mathapo, Reference Librarian and Professor of Legal Research at the University of Florida Levin College of Law – Lawton Chiles Legal Information Center, demonstrated this at the 2017 AALL Annual Meeting Cool Tools Café.

Zotero claims to include “the best parts of older reference manager software” (for the old school librarians in us) in addition to “the best aspects of modern software and web applications” (for the tech junkies in us).

Sounds like a win-win!

Cool Tool Spotlight #8: Tawnya Plumb on Omeka.net

This week’s featured tool is Omeka.net, a web publishing platform for sharing digital collections and creating media-rich online exhibits. Tawnya Plumb, Head of Electronic and Digital Services at the University of Wyoming College of Law Library, demonstrated this at the 2017 AALL Annual Meeting Cool Tools Café.

There’s a (seemingly unlimited) free trial, or there are a variety of paid plans ranging from $35 – $1000 a year. Omeka.org also has information on additional open source projects, including a mobile app.

If your institution doesn’t have any kind of repository, or if you’re considering jumping off the bepress bandwagon, this may be worth a trial!

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