How did we survive before the Internet?

If it is Urban Dictionary or hire some linguistic expert to do a survey, it seems like a pretty cheap, pretty good alternative for the court.

Greg Lastowka, an intellectual property professor at Rutgers Law-Camden, suggesting that the trend of using Urban Dictionary as a tool in litigation may accelerate due to the site’s relative ease of use.

I hope they're reading Above the Law.

Usually, it’s law professors who spend time bitching about students using Facebook and Gchatting in class. Boring, old, can’t hold an audience unless it’s captive, law professors. For the most part, I let those professorial concerns go in one ear and out the other. You’re making six figures as a law professor and you have to teach a couple of times a week. If your lecture isn’t more interesting than Minecraft, it’s your own damn fault. If you try, they will listen.

Yesterday we got something that we don’t see a lot: a letter from a law student complaining about the way her classmates use Facebook and Gchat. Yeah, apparently there is some law school out there that forces students to look at other students’ Facebook pages during class. Can you believe it… oh, wait; I’m getting new information over the wire that suggests the complaining student is just an incredible busybody who thinks she’s been elected police commissioner of other people’s in-class behavior.

Let’s delve into the mind of a person who wants to be the boss of you….

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After CNN editor Octavia Nasr got the boot for an indiscreet tweet, Fast Company was inspired to do a series of stories on companies’ social media policies: “guidelines about how its employees (and freelancers and interns) should represent themselves on Twitter, Facebook, and other social media destinations.”

In the most recent piece in the series, Fast Company looked at Harvard Law’s guidelines for its bloggers. It approved of Harvard’s straightforward approach:

Think this one is going to be dense and chock-full of legalese? Though it’s not exactly written in plain English, the one page document titled “Terms of Use” is a straightforward take on how to blog under Harvard’s domain. Not surprisingly, the first point deals with copyrights, but goes on to include:

“As a general matter, you may post content freely to your blog and to those of others, so long as the content is not illegal, obscene, defamatory, threatening, infringing of intellectual property rights, invasive of privacy or otherwise injurious or objectionable.

Well, that takes all the fun out of it, doesn’t it?

You may not use the Harvard name to endorse or promote any product, opinion, cause or political candidate. Representation of your personal opinions as institutionally endorsed by Harvard University or any of its Schools or organizations is strictly prohibited.”

So no endorsement of Elena Kagan allowed over there?

There’s a burgeoning awareness of social media in the law firm world. When we were in Chicago for an in-house counsel conference, we met a lawyer who had chucked the practice of law to advise law firms on how to use social media. We asked him about guidelines for law firms and lawyers when it comes to Facebooking, blogging, and celebrity endorsements via Twitter…

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