2010 was a busy legal year, especially for free law advocates. Here are some of Justia’s legal predictions for 2011:
Lawyers and legal professionals will continue to embrace free law as fast as our Law.gov movement friends can crank it out. Free law will continue its dramatic growth, and Justia remains proud to support the efforts of Carl Malamud’s work at Public.Resource.Org, along with Google, Fastcase, LII and other friends.
SCOTUS will grant certiorari after the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit renders a decision either affirming or denying a lower court ruling that California’s ban against same-sex marriage is unconstitutional.
Great news, friends! Starting in 2011, Public.Resource.Org will release a Report of Current Opinions (RECOP) on a weekly basis. The Report will include a FREE HTML feed of ALL slip and final opinions from the appellate courts of the 50 states and the federal government. The feed will be available for reuse under a CCCC-Zero license, and will include page numbers. For more details, read Carl Malamud’s announcement on O’Reilly Radar. This is one of the major projects that Public.Resource.Org has undertaken since being awarded the Google 10^100 Grant in September.
Thanks Google for supporting free law … again 🙂 Last year Google Scholar gave the world free USA case law (with internal page numbers) and now Google has announced the first recipients of its Project 10^100 grants, including Public.Resource.Org.
Tom Bruce, Dan Nagy and Deborah Schaaf from the Legal Information Institute at Cornell Law School stopped on by for some meetings with folks on new free information projects. The LII gang met with us, Nolo, Stanford and FreeGovInfo.info 🙂 And there was a talk on privacy on the Internet with David Schellhase & Michael Blum moderated by Kevin Haroff. Here are some pictures of Tom in action making things happen…
A few weeks ago the New York Times floated a rumor/great idea that Carl Malamud, the great hard working free information Internet do-gooder, was being mentioned as a potential candidate for head of the Government Printing Office. Of course, we at Justia cheered this idea on — who better to bring government publishing into the digital age than the man whose will and technology know how has lead millions of court decisions, SEC filings, patents, Congressional videos online and other public domain documents being brough online for all to research and enjoy.
As many of you know (at least those in the Open Government & Law Groups), Free Public Information Hero Carl Malamud and Public.Resource.org have been working to get state codes, building codes, electrical codes and other state and city codes online for free… sort of a virtual city of free codes.
Oregon’s Legislative Counsel Committee had a meeting this morning to discuss the copyright claim on the Oregon Revised Statutes. After taking legal counsel from Dexter Johnson, talking with Karl Olson, Carl Malamud, three Oregon citizens and myself, they unanimously voted to not to enforce any copyright claims on the Oregon Revised Statutes. This is great!!!
Last week, the State of Oregon Legislative Counsel Committee sent Justia a notice of copyright infringement and demand to cease and desist. In its letter, Dexter Johnson, the Legislative Counsel, asked us to remove a copy of the Oregon Revised Statutes stored on our servers (or pay a licensing fee) by April 30, 2008. The letter claimed copyright on many parts of the Oregon Revised Statutes:
[T]he Committee … claim[s] a copyright in the arrangement and subject-matter compilation of Oregon statutory law, the prefatory and explanatory notes, the leadlines and numbering for each statutory section, the tables the index and annotations and such other incidents as are work product of the Committee in the compilation and publication of Oregon law.
As public domain information hero Carl Malamud is working on getting case law online and into the public domain (we have helped a bit :). Carl, donors, and the Public.Resource.org team have done a lot and… more to come…
But in addition to case law, Carl has also been working to get other public legal documents online and into the public domain. These documents include the legislative histories of the laws. So this was interesting… it looks like Thomson-West has signed an exclusive agreement with the GAO to have these legislative histories on WestLaw.