This item about a new California Office of Legislative Counsel white paper is from the most recent issue:
Authentication of Primary Legal Materials and Pricing Options
“The recent passage of the Uniform Electronic Legal Material Act (UELMA) has brought to the forefront the issue of costs of authenticating primary legal materials in electronic format. This white paper briefly reviews five methods of electronic authentication. These methods are based on trustworthiness, file types, effort to implement, and volume of electronic documents to be authenticated. Six sample solutions are described and their relative costs are compared. The white paper also frames the legal landscape and background of authentication for primary legal materials in electronic format, and provides context and points to applicable resources. The aim of this collective effort is to promote the understanding of costs related to authentication and invite further discussion on the issue.”
As the Internet becomes an increasingly pervasive communications technology in society, public discussions and other born-digital documents of social and political importance frequently exist solely on various websites. To fulfill their missions of preserving public knowledge, libraries seek to acquire and make accessible web documents to scholars, students, and other library patrons. However, section 108 of the Copyright Act, which previously provided sufficient protection from liability for libraries’ acquisition and reproduction activities, does not adequately map onto the technological realities of acquiring digital documents over the Internet. As a result, libraries must accept the risk of copyright infringement liability or forgo preserving historically important online documents. This Note proposes a set of amendments that would update section 108 to extend libraries’ current limited protections from copyright liability to the acquisition, preservation, and making available of online documents.