Archive for December, 2010

Do Judges Read Online Briefs Differently? Brief Writers May Need to Be Briefer – News – ABA Journal

December 12, 2010

An article looking how on-screen reading habits should be taken into consideration when writing briefs. These factors combined with Courts moving away from oral arguments on motions to Judges rendering opinions strictly based on written submissions, makes paying attention to your writing style more important than ever.

As more courts require e-filing, lawyers may need to adjust their writing style to account for differences in the way people read online. That’s the conclusion of Houston appellate lawyer Martin Siegel in an article for Texas Lawyer. Online readers “jump around, skimming and seizing on bits of text,” Siegel writes. “Eye-tracking studies show they seek content in an F-shaped pattern, looking down the left side for structural cues and then focusing on headings and first sentences of paragraphs. Heaven help the content provider with important text consigned to the bottom right of the screen.” Siegel cites a book by Houston appellate lawyer Robert Dubose and a law review article by University of Dayton law professor Maria Crist. Dubose says lawyers writing with online readers in mind should put their most important points in headings and first sentences of paragraphs, use bullet points, and quickly get to…

via Do Judges Read Online Briefs Differently? Brief Writers May Need to Be Briefer – News – ABA Journal.



Youtube Commenter sued for Defamation

December 10, 2010

Credit to Gawker for this story:

Toronto Police Const. Adam Josephs appears to take himself and his job seriously. Very, very, very seriously. He threatened a protester with assault charges for blowing bubbles. And now he’s suing a YouTube commenter for an 11-word wisecrack.

A video of Josephs getting comically tough with a young G20 protester (above) became a viral hit. “If the bubble touches me, you’re going to be arrested for assault,” Josephs told the protester. The officer was promptly dubbed “Officer Bubbles” and became the target of a series of YouTube parody cartoons of the same name. Joseph then filed a $1.2 million defamation lawsuit and is seeking to legally compel Google to revel the identity of the parody cartoon’s creator, plusthe identities of 24 people who commented on it. That’ll show them you’re not a humorless stick in the mud who wields that law against the pettiest of transgressions! (Needless to say, the parody cartoons are no longer on YouTube.)

More news on Judges/Attorney’s and Facebook

December 10, 2010

An Ohio judge is allowed to have Facebook friends, the Board of Commissioners on Grievances and Discipline of the state’s top court held today. But doing so requires “constant vigil,” the board says in its written opinion, because “a judge must maintain dignity in every comment, photograph and other information shared on the social network,”

via Judges Can Have Facebook Friends, with \’Constant Vigil,\’ Says Ohio Supreme Court Board – News – ABA Journal.


December 1, 2010

Here is a great article from TechCrunch, a technology site about the Barmax bar prep app for iOS  to study for the CA or NY bars.  It is now expanding from the iPhone to the iPad.  I really like this idea and wonder how it will impact the Barbri and Kaplan programs. This article implies BarMax’s success may be related to BarBri being offered for sale by Thomson-Reuters.  It is still limited to those two states and it will be interesting to see how and when they expand.

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