Locating The Law

Locating The LawAre you looking for it? Well, here it is. The Public Access to Legal Information Committee in conjunction with the Southern California Association of Law Libraries has just released its newly-revised, Fifth Edition of “Locating The Law”, a handbook of resources for non-lawyers. The contents include:

  • Cover
  • Preface by Ruth Hill
  • Acknowledgments by June Kim
  • Chapter 1: Introduction by Karla Castetter
  • Chapter 2: How to Read a Legal Citation by David McFadden
  • Chapter 3: Basic Legal Research Techniques by Joan Allen-Hart
  • Chapter 4: Legal Reference vs. Legal Advice by Joan Allen-Hart
  • Chapter 5: California Law by Laura A. Cadra
  • Chapter 6: Bibliography of California Resources by Patrick Meyer
  • Chapter 7: Federal Law by Karla Castetter
  • Chapter 8: Bibliography of Federal Law Resources by June Kim
  • Chapter 9: Assisting Self-Represented Litigants by Laura A. Cadra & June Kim
  • Chapter 10: Bibliography of Self-Help Resources by Lisa Schultz
  • Chapter 11: Availability, Accessibility and Maintenance of Legal Collections by Joan Allen-Hart
  • Chapter 12: Major Law Publishers by Jennifer Lentz
  • Appendix A: Glossary of Legal Terms by June Kim
  • Appendix B: California County Law Libraries by Esther Eastman
  • Appendix C: California Law Schools by Karla Castetter

    You can download the entire PDF here. While California-focused, it includes info of interest that crosses state lines.


On-Line Social Really IS Social!!!

NerdNewsflash: the Internet is NOT making you weird! According to the Pew Internet & American Life Project, studies show that people who employ modern methods of communicating via the Web and mobile devices actually have larger and more diverse social networks. You can download a copy of the report of the study here. What are the numbers? From the press release:

“The new findings from the Pew Internet & American Life Project show that, on average, the size of people’s discussion networks – those with whom people discuss important matters– is 12% larger amongst mobile phone users, 9% larger for those who share photos online, and 9% bigger for those who use instant messaging. The diversity of people’s core networks – their closest and most significant confidants – tends to be 25% larger for mobile phone users, 15% larger for basic internet users, and even larger for frequent internet users, those who use instant messaging, and those who share digital photos online.”

The study was directed, in part, at measuring a perceived increased level of social isolation experienced by heavy users of the internet and mobile devices, but found quite the opposite. While “discussion” networks in real life have been shrinking since the mid 1980’s, these networks have been growing for on-line users. There are a number of other semi-startling results that challenge popular opinion as well: on-line use does NOT equate with less involvement in the local community; intenet use is spread equally between long-distance and local communication; internet use actually encourages visits to public places, such as libraries, parks and coffee shops,  – many go to such places to engage on-line, and on-line discussion networks usually include a far wider representative sample of backgrounds and diversity than in real life groups.

In other words, the researchers conclude that your social life is enhanced, rather than hindered, by engagement in on-line communication and activity. Don’t hesitate to enter the on-line fray to expand your discussion groups and influence and increase your value to others.

You can breathe easy now. Internet use does NOT make you weird. But it may not be able to help you if you already are.

Hat tip to Resource Shelf.