University of North Texas (UNT) Annual Open Access Symposia: 2015 Symposium “Open Access and the Law”

The University of North Texas (UNT), in furtherance of its commitment to the global open access movement, sponsors an annual symposium on Open Access.

Please see here for information about previous years’ events, speakers and presentations.

The 2015 symposium’s theme is “Open Access and the Law.”

The scheduled dates of the 2015 symposium — at the UNT Dallas College of Law — are Monday-Tuesday, May 18-19, 2015.

It will open on Monday evening May 18th with a reception.

Substantive programs will then take place the following day.

Speakers will include individuals working on the authentication of electronic legal materials as well as on institutional repositories.

More information on the 2015 symposium will become available soon.

Cross-posted at Law Library Blog.

New Email-Alerts System from U.S. Library of Congress for Tracking Legislative Action on Congress.gov

Earlier this month the U.S. Library of Congress made available — on Congress.gov — “a new optional email-alerts system that makes tracking legislative action even easier.”

Please see the explanatory news release “Congress.gov Offers Users New Alert System” of 5-Feb-2015 here.

Pilot Program to Put Court Transcripts in the Cloud

A pilot program in Fresno, California to create and distribute court transcripts in The Cloud offers hope on the legal transcript front — please see:

Sean Doherty, Law Technology News

See also here for YesLAW Online.

Cross-posted at Law Library Blog.

Legal Affairs Committee of Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly States that Mass Surveillance Practices “Endanger Fundamental Human Rights”

A new report of the Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights of the Parliamentary Assembly (PACE), Council of Europe states that the mass surveillance practices disclosed by US whistleblower Edward Snowden “endanger fundamental human rights.”

The report is here.

Please see the accompanying press release here.

“PubAg,” User-Friendly Search Engine, Debuts at the U.S. National Agricultural Library

The U.S. National Agricultural Library (NAL) has debuted PubAg, a user-friendly search engine, which provides “enhanced access” to the public to search for and obtain research published by scientists at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

The NAL is part of USDA’s Agricultural Research Service (ARS).

Please see here for the USDA’s press release about PubAg.

Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) Posts New, 3-Year [2015-2017] Strategic Plan

Please see the January 7, 2015 post:

What’s Ahead for DPLA: Our New Strategic Plan

The full plan is:

DPLA: Digital Public Library of America: Strategic Plan: 2015 through 2017

For more information about the DPLA, which launched officially on April 18, 2013, please see — among other things — here and here.

New Pew Research Center Report concerning Technology’s Impact on Workers

The Pew Research Center has a new (December 20, 2014) report concerning technology’s impact on workers.

Please see:

Digital Life in 2025: Technology’s Impact on Workers by Kristen Purcell & Lee Rainie

From the report’s Summary of Findings:

  1. Email and the internet are deemed the most important communications and information tools among online workers.
  2. While commentators worry that digital tools can be a distraction in the workplace, many online workers say that is not the case when it comes to their productivity.
  3. Bosses are adapting, too (i.e., employers are likewise changing practices regarding employees’ use of the internet).

EU “Right To Be Forgotten” Guidelines

Europe’s Article 29 Working Party, made up of data protection (or data privacy or information privacy) representatives from individual Member States of the European Union (EU), recently published guidelines for implementing the so-called “right to be forgotten” ruling, which was earlier handed down by Europe’s top court in May of this year.

New Congressional Research Service (CRS) Report on CyberCrime

The Congressional Research Service (CRS) earlier this month posted a new report:

Cybercrime: An Overview of the Federal Computer Fraud and Abuse Statute and Related Federal Criminal Laws
by Charles Doyle
(97-1025)
From the report’s Summary:

The Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA), 18 U.S.C. 1030, outlaws conduct that victimizes computer systems. It is a cyber security law. It protects federal computers, bank computers, and computers connected to the Internet. It shields them from trespassing, threats, damage, espionage, and from being corruptly used as instruments of fraud. It is not a comprehensive provision, but instead it fills cracks and gaps in the protection afforded by other federal criminal laws. This is a brief sketch of CFAA and some of its federal statutory companions, including the amendments found in the Identity Theft Enforcement and Restitution Act, P.L. 110-326, 122 Stat. 3560 (2008).

World Wildlife Fund’s (WWF’s) “Living Planet Report 2014″

The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) has recently released its Living Planet Report 2014 — for the full report, please see here.

Unfortunately, biodiversity on earth seems to be in worse shape than ever and is declining in both temperate and tropical regions of the earth, although the decline is reportedly greater in the tropics.

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