Aug 24
10:25 AM

Student Cyber-speech: An update on last spring’s McLennon Moot Court topic

Over the summer, there was a flurry of activity on the topic of last spring's Paul A. McLennon, Sr. Honors Moot Court Competition. For those of you who spent many, many hours last semester preparing your briefs and oral arguments (congrats to winner Craig TenBroeck and all the competitors), you need no reminder. But for the rest of you, here's a brief synopsis of the competition topic:

A high school took disciplinary action against a student for posting a link on his blog to a song he'd written containing violent and offensive lyrics. The song referred to a school administrator by name and to a fellow student by the initial "M." The disciplined student posted the link using his home computer. There were two primary issues: (1) whether the school had authority over the student's off-campus cyber-speech; and (2) if the school did have such authority, whether the school's disciplinary action was proper under the First Amendment.

On July 25, 2011,the student in Doninger v. Niehoff, 527 F.3d 41 (2d Cir. 2008), one of the cases cited by Moot Court competitors, petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court for a writ of certiorari. Read a summary of the issues before the court here and here.
Also, a number of appellate cases concerning school discipline over a student’s off-campus, online speech were handed down over the summer. Two 3rd Circuit cases favored students:

J.S. ex rel. Snyder v. Blue Mountain Sch. Dist., No. 08-4138 (3rd Cir. Jun. 13, 2011)
Layshock ex rel. Layshock v. Hermitage Sch. Dist., No. 07-4465 (3d Cir. Jun. 13, 2011).

And cases from the 4th and 8th Circuits favored school districts:

Kowalski v. Berkeley Co. Sch., No. 10-1098 (4th Cir. Jul. 27, 2011)
D.J.M. ex rel. D.M. v. Hannibal Pub. Sch. Dist. No. 60, No. 10-1428, No. 10-1579 (8th Cir. Aug. 1, 2011)

Here's some of the coverage of these cases around the blawgosphere:
J.S. and Layshock: LawProfBlog & SPLC
D.J.M: EdWeek & Fire
Kowalski: EdWeek & WSJ Blog

Here are a couple of other recent interesting blog posts and articles on the topic:
Ed. Law Rep. article & Justia blog post  [JML]

Aug 22
5:40 PM
Aug 17
11:51 AM

Google Sitelinks Enhancements

The Google engineers have been busy improving their sitelinks feature. This is a feature that provides links to subpages of a website right in your search results. The Google search algorithm takes a guess at which specific subpage you're interested in, even if you didn't include details in your search terms. For example, if I search for University of San Diego LRC, Google gives me a link to the LRC's homepage first, but beneath that Google also gives me a short list of some of the LRC subpages most popular with visitors to the website, including our hours and contact info:


The latest changes to the feature were announced on Google's blog which is a great place to keep up with the latest and greatest from our friends at Google. [JML]

Aug 15
1:25 PM

Fall Semester Hours (August 15th – December 1st)

Welcome back students! The LRC's current hours of operation are now:

Library Reference
Monday – Thursday 7 a.m. – 12 a.m. Monday – Thursday 8 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Friday – Saturday 8 a.m. – 10 p.m. Friday 8 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Sunday 8 a.m. – 12 a.m. Saturday – Sunday 12 p.m. – 4 p.m.


Aug 9
10:04 AM

Welcome 1L and returning students!

All of us at the Legal Research Center (LRC) are eager to meet new 1L and LLM students, and we welcome back all returning students! At next week's orientation activities, we will discuss what the LRC has to offer you, but feel free to stop by any time before then to check us out. We provide access to past exams given by your first year professors, commercial outlines, and other study aids.  In addition to LEXIS and Westlaw, the LRC subscribes to numerous electronic databases, provides wireless access, and houses a computer lab to meet your computing, printing, and scanning needs. See you all next week!


Aug 9
9:58 AM

Title Fifty-ONE of the U.S. Code

On December 20, 2010, President Barak Obama signed Public Law 111-314, the new Title 51 of the United States Code, “The National and Commercial Space Programs”. Since the 1960s space legislation has been enacted into Title 15, Commerce and Trade, Title 42, Public Health and Welfare, and Title 49, Transportation. The new law does not provide for any new programs or repeal any old ones, but rather it purports to gather,reorganize and restate the existing laws into a more coherent structure. Volume 37 of the Journal of Space Law is devoted to the new legislation. RL