Friday, October 24, 2014

Trick or Treatise! Halloween Is On Its Way...

Halloween is a week away, and while many are busy planning their costumes, the Law Library invites you to take a moment to visit our display on the lower level, which has been "dressed up" with a Halloween theme!

The display offers search tips and "Tricks" using Google, as well as traditional legal research platforms, including WestlawNext, Lexis Advance, and Bloomberg Law.  Especially highlighted are ways to utilize BOO-Lean operators (we couldn't resist) as well as wildcard and truncation symbols.  The tips and tricks for Google can also be found at their support site here.  Boolean and search operators for the legal research databases (as well as almost any other library database) can usually be located under the Help features.

Also featured on the display are several of the Law Library's print "Treatises" along with information on locating treatises in the legal research databases as well as in the Law Library's collection.  Especially highlighted is the Law Library's LibGuide on Legal Treatises and Other Legal Reference Materials by Topic.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

FEATURE POST: Law Professor Tom Simmons Reviews New Title, Modern Chinese Real Estate Law: Property Development in an Evolving Legal System

Professor Tom Simmons is contributing to the collection development effort of the USD Law Library. Under a recently adopted program, professors make recommendations for titles to be added to the Law Library collection. Consistent with the Collection Development Policy of the Law Library, titles recommended for acquisition by the faculty are given priority consideration. If the recommended title is acquired, the faculty member provides a brief review of the title for publication on the Law Library Blog.

Below Professor Simmons provides the third review for a title acquired under the new program. Thank you Professor Simmons!

Gregory M. Stein, Modern Chinese Real Estate Law: Property Development in an Evolving Legal System (Surrey, England: Ashgate Publishing Ltd. 2012)

Professor Gregory M. Stein, the author of Modern Chinese Real Estate Law: Property Development in an Evolving Legal System (Surrey, England: Ashgate Publishing Ltd. 2012), is an Associate Dean at the Tennessee College of Law where he teaches courses in advanced property, commercial real estate and land use law. In 2003, he was a visiting Fulbright Professor of Law at Shanghai Jiaotong University. He returned four more times. Those experiences led to this book.

Unlike the existing books on Chinese property law, Professor Stein’s text is lively, cogent, and up-to-date. He attempts to offer a “detailed account of how the Chinese real estate market actually operates in practice.” (6) The actual printed law of property in China is skeletal. Professor Stein describes how the system manages with so few written laws and sets out to explain “how the actors in the world’s most explosive real estate market actually function.” (11)

In Modern Chinese Real Estate Law, the author succeeds in imparting a sense of wonder at the explosion of commercial transactions on so flimsy a legal framework which seems to run counter to the accepted Western thinking that sees an established rule of law as a necessary precondition to economic vitality. At the same time, Professor Stein introduces the basic components of Chinese real estate law, from land use rights, real estate development entities, development issues and banking/financing.

Unfortunately, Professor Stein spends little time on takings, residential leaseholds or title registration, yet his book is an important one and deserving of a wide readership given the importance and unique history that China represents.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

October 19-25 is National Pro Bono Week

Celebrate Pro Bono 2014 image badge large




Each year, the ABA Standing Committee on Pro Bono and Public Service sponsors the celebration of National Pro Bono Week. The celebration is "a coordinated national effort to meet the ever-growing needs of this country's most vulnerable citizens by encouraging and supporting local efforts to expand the delivery of pro bono legal services, and by showcasing the great difference that pro bono lawyers make to the nation, its system of justice, its communities and, most of all, to the clients they serve."

In support of the celebration the Law Library has prepared a display of select materials on the topic of pro bono services available via the Law Library. Included in the display are:

Thorns and roses: lawyers tell their pro bono stories / Deborah A. Schmedemann;

Building your practice with pro bono for lawyers / Nelson P. Miller; and

A copy of Rule 6.1 of the State Bar of South Dakota Rules of Professional Conduct regarding voluntary pro bono services. Rule 6.1 provides:

Voluntary Pro Bono Publico Service.

A lawyer should render public interest legal service.
A lawyer may discharge this responsibility by:
(a) providing professional services at no fee or a reduced fee to persons of limited means or to public service or charitable groups or organizations; or
(b) by service without compensation in public interest activities that improve the law, the legal system or the legal profession; or
(c) by financial support for organizations that provide legal services to persons of limited means.


Monday, October 20, 2014

A Reminder About Security

Law students may want to be aware that earlier this month, another U.S. Law School experienced a large-scale theft of textbooks from student carrels.  This occurred at a law school located in a small city, similar in size to Vermillion.

Students should be aware that any time personal belongings are left unattended, there is some risk of theft.  Please be aware of this risk when leaving personal items unattended in carrels.

Friday, October 17, 2014

October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month

October is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month.  In light of the recent hacking incidents at J.P. Morgan Chase, Dairy Queen, and Home Depot, you may not need a reminder that cybersecurity is a growing concern.  However, awareness of the steps you should reasonably take to protect your own data as well as the confidential information of clients is already an expectation outlined by the ABA Model Rules of Professional Conduct.


To encourage you to develop your cybersecurity awareness, the Law Library has prepared a display of law library resources on the topic, including the Presidential Proclamation concerning National Cybersecurity Awareness Month and an Oklahoma Bar Journal article authored by Law Library Director Darla Jackson discussing technology and confidentiality awareness.  Several print books are also featured in the display:

The ABA Cybersecurity Handbook: A Resource for Attorneys, Law firms, and Business professionals / Jill D. Rhodes and Vincent I. Polley.

Legal Guide to Cybersecurity Research / Jody R. Westby.

National Cybersecurity Awareness Month is designed to engage and educate public and private sector partners through events and initiatives with the goal of raising awareness about cybersecurity and increasing the resiliency of the nation in the event of a cyber incident. October 2014 marks the 11th Annual National Cybersecurity Awareness Month sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security in cooperation with the National Cyber Security Alliance and the Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center

We encourage you to review the materials on display and to visit the websites of the sponsors of National Cybersecurity Awareness Month to learn more.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Thanks to All Who Participated in Our September Library Card Sign-Up Month Contest!

The Law Library would like to thank all the students who stopped by the Law Library during the month of September to link their Coyote Cards with their borrowing accounts.  All students who did so were eligible to enter a contest for a jar of Starburst candies.  The winner of the contest was Chad Dotson.  Congratulations Chad!

If you didn't have a chance to stop by during September, it's not too late to come by the Circulation/Reference Desk and have us link your card.  Don't forget that we can also always check out items to you even if you don't have your card with you.  Just provide the desk staff with your name and some other form of identification.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

October is Co-op Month - Law Library Display

October is National Co-op Month and the Law Library is now featuring a display which highlights many of the Law Library's resources regarding cooperative associations.  Featured in the display is a recent print issue of the USDA's Rural Cooperatives magazine from the Law Library's Periodicals collection (the publication is also available electronically from the USDA here). 

The display also offers information about the Uniform Limited Cooperative Associations Act (ULCAA) as well as scholarly articles authored by Law School Dean Thomas Geu about the ULCAA.  Dean Geu's articles can be accessed via the Law School's Selected Works site here.

Several print titles from the Law Library's collection are also featured in the display, including:

Agricultural Co-operation / Malcolm Sargent

The Rise of American Cooperative Enterprise:1620-1920 / Joseph G. Knapp

The Law of Cooperatives / Charles T. Autry and Roland F. Hall

The Farmer’s Benevolent Trust: Law and Agricultural Cooperation in Industrial America, 1865-1945 / Victoria Saker Woeste