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Moritz Law  /  Law Library  /  Opinio Juris  / August 2012


Opinio Juris - August 2012

Scroll down to read about a federal model jury instruction for social media use, ProQuest Congressional's new interface, a timeline and key filings for the California same-sex marriage federal case, the exit of many Oxford legal journals from Westlaw, and a Supreme Court case name pronouncing dictionary. For information on other topics, see the Moritz Legal Information Blog and the Moritz Law Library Facebook page.

Federal Model Jury Instruction on Social Media Use

The Judicial Conference Committee of Court Administration and Case Management has proposed a model jury instruction on "The Use of Electronic Technology to Conduct Research on or Communicate about a Case." According to a news release, the instruction aims to deter jurors' use of social media during trials. The proposal requires detailed instructions on the consequences of social media use during trials and recommends repeated reminders by the court. The instruction comes in response to a recent Federal Judicial Center study on jurors' social media use.

New Proquest Congressional Interface

Proquest Congressional, a comprehensive legislative history database available through the Moritz Law Library, has announced the launch of a new interface. Formerly known as LexisNexis Congressional, the database offers access to Congressional reports and hearings, compiled legislative histories, bills, committee prints, the Congressional Record, and CRS reports covering an extensive time period. The new interface has a simpler, cleaner look similar to ProQuest's historical newspapers databases. Access ProQuest Congressional's new interface on-campus. Off-campus access will be available soon. The older interface [off-campus] remains temporarily available.

Prop. 8 Timeline and Briefs

Stanford Law Library has created a "Key Timeline" of the Hollingsworth v. Perry same-sex marriage case, currently on petition for certiorari in the U.S. Supreme Court. The timeline begins in May 2008 when the California Supreme Court found that the state's definition of marriage violated the equal protection clause of the California Constitution. The timeline continues with California's constitutional amendment and the court challenge that followed. Also available is a seven-page document providing the main briefs and filings at each stage of the federal proceedings.

Many Oxford Univ. Press Law Journals No Longer on Westlaw

Those searching for law journal articles on Westlaw will no longer find articles in many law journals published by Oxford University Press. According to sources such as Brian Leiter's Law Reports, OUP withdrew access to the journals from Westlaw at the beginning of August. Leiter provides a list of the 18 journals removed, which include the Oxford Journal of Legal Studies, Journal of Environmental Law, Journal of International Criminal Justice, and International Journal of Constitutional Law. These journals remain accessible online through the OSU library catalog and on Lexis in its database, "UK Law Journals, Combined."

Supreme Court Case Name Pronouncing Dictionary

Yale Law School's Eugene Fidell and a number of law and linguistics students have created a pronouncing dictionary for U.S. Supreme Court case names. The purpose of the dictionary is to "help conscientious lawyers, judges, teachers, students, and journalists correctly pronounce often-perplexing case names." The dictionary is based on textbooks, recordings, accounts by litigants or counsel, pronunciation guides, journalism, and surveys. See also the accompanying article in Green Bag.