News and information useful to Cleveland-Marshall College of Law students, faculty and staff.

Archive for December 9th, 2011

Prof. Mika’s Take on Internet Legal Research

Professor Karin Mika recently presented at a Legal Writing Institute Workshop on the topic of doing legal research using free internet sources.  Her presentation demonstrated that Google can be an effective alternative search tool, and is sometimes more efficient than Lexis or Westlaw for common research chores.   Government agencies often lay out step-by-step processes for filing claims, or explain the filing of various forms.  For example, the EEOC’s website contains considerable information on filing a discrimination charge.    Sample documents and filings written by attorneys abound on the Internet on sites such as JDSupra or on full text dockets such as PACER or the Summit County Docket.   Finally, Wikipedia is a source to get plain English explanations for various legal concepts and even to get plain English summaries for major Supreme Court cases.  (It is a good idea to double check Wikipedia if you are relying it for more than just background information, as anyone can edit it. )

Photo by Glassdog

Human Rights Day 2011

Tomorrow, December 10th, is Human Rights Day 2011. This annual celebration, which is sponsored by the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, incorporates events, media, and stories about the impact of human rights around the world. The basis of the day is the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, a declaration of the basic rights of all humans adopted by the U.N. General Assembly on December 10th, 1948. Some of the rights embodied in the Declaration include the right to be free of torture, the right equal protection before the law, the right to marriage, and the right to education. As a fun fact, the Universal Declaration has been translated into 382 different languages, which you can search here.  Videos in honor of the day are posted here.  Arguably, the Arab Spring movements were the biggest human rights events of 2011. This timeline of events from The Guardian lets you follow the activities of the Arab Spring from December 2010 through this month.