Mobile PACER Case Locator

Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER) , the electronic public access service that allows users to obtain case and docket information from federal appellate, district and bankruptcy courts, has just added a mobile Web version of the PACER case locator function. This new version is accessible using Apple computer devises such as iPads and iPhones, as well as using Android devices (version 2.2 or higher).

See here for the announcement of the Mobile PACER Case Locator, which can be obtained by visiting: here.

Cross-posted at Law Library Blog.

Up to 1,000 Percent More Constituent Communications Being Received by U.S. Congress

The Congressional Management Foundation reports that congressional offices are receiving from 200 to 1,000 percent more constituent communications than they were 10 years ago.

Selected findings include:

  • Data from a select number of House and Senate offices quantifying the increase in constituent communications in the past decade.
  • Percentage of congressional offices answering incoming email with a response email in 2010 compared to 2005.
  • Percentage of congressional staff who report they spend more time on constituent communications than two years ago.
  • Response time to constituent communications, as reported by congressional staff.

See the full report:

How Citizen Advocacy Is Changing Mail Operations on Capitol Hill

Cross-posted at Law Library Blog.

Text messaging is the most common non-voice application (other than taking photographs) Americans use on their mobile phones

The Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project has recently posted:
How Americans Use Text Messaging

According to this report:

Text messaging leveled off between 2010 and 2011, even as users send or receive more than 40 texts per day on average.

Along with taking photos, text messaging is the most common non-voice application Americans use on their mobile phones. Some 73% of adult cell owners use the text messaging function on their phone at least occasionally (nearly identical to the 72% of cell owners who did so at a similar point in 2010). Text messaging users send or receive an average of 41.5 messages per day, with the median user sending or receiving 10 texts daily. Each of these figures is a notable increase from late 2009, and similar to what we found the last time we conducted an in-depth study of text messaging in the spring of 2010—at that point, the average number of texts sent or received per day was 39.1, with a median of 10.

The Summary of Findings is here.

Cross-posted at Law Library Blog.

The Mobile Phone: A Near-Ubiquitous Tool for Information-Seeking and Communication in the U.S.

According to a Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project national survey, “Americans and Their Cell Phones” (August 15, 2011), mobile telephones have become a near-ubiquitous tool for information seeking and communicating in the United States.

The survey shows that 83% of American adults own some kind of cell phone and that these devices have an impact on many aspects of their owners’ daily lives.

Hat tip to

Cross-posted at Law Library Blog.

American Automobile Association (AAA) Digest of Motor Laws

The American Automobile Association (AAA or “Triple A”) has released its latest edition of the venerable and valuable Digest of Motor Laws.

The digest is “an online compendium of laws and rules related to driving and owning a motor vehicle in the United States and Canada.”

It is possible browse each state’s traffic laws, driver’s license, vehicle titling and registration requirements, and fees and taxes.

It is also possible to compare specific laws or requirements across multiple jurisdictions — see here.

Hat tip to

Cross-posted on Law Library Blog.

World eBook Fair

The World eBook Fair runs July 4-August 4, 2011.

The fair’s aim is to provide free public access for a month to some 6.5 million eBooks.

Project Gutenberg and the Internet Archive are both contributing organizations.

Each will be presenting a number of items in other media during 2011 — such as music, movies, artwork, and dance choreography.

The available collections include reference books and scientific items, as well as approximately 50,000 music entries (on top of 12,000 that debuted last year).

All are welcome to join the World Public Library for an annual membership of US$8.95 per year.

Members can download from a selection of about 2 million PDF eBooks.

Hat tip to

See also: World eBook Fair – 6.5 million ebooks available through August 4th

Cross-posted on Law Library Blog.

A Proposed Course of Action for …

Cornell Law School’s Peter W. Martin, Jane M.G. Foster Professor of Law, Emeritus, who has contributed in the past on vendor-neutral citation (see, e.g., 99 Law Lib. J. 329 (2007)), recently wrote:

A Proposed Course of Action for or Some Alternative Non-Commercial Entity


Among other things, Prof. Martin emphasizes right off the bat that:

It is 2011 not the mid-nineties. The environment has changed since the ABA and AALL first came out for public domain citation…

Cross-posted on Law Library Blog.

The State of eBooks and eReaders — May 2011 Report

A joint Poudre River Public, Front Range Community College, and Colorado State University libraries committee has released:

eBooks and eReaders in Public and Academic Libraries

(May 2011)

The purpose of the study was to gain a better understanding of this rapidly-developing topic as well as to make recommendations aimed at serving the customers of each library.

Hat tip to

Cross posted on Law Library Blog.

“Freeliterature” Portal to E-Book Sites

Freeliterature is a valuable portal to e-book sites, including not only collections of items in English — such as Project Gutenberg — but also in other languages from around the globe.

Categories of books/materials covered — see here — include, among other things:

  • Classical Greek & Latin – Medieval
  • Technical and Scientific
  • Audio Books
  • Art
  • Music
  • Research, Education and Scientific Publications

Freeliterature also invites participation — see here — in the proofreading of electronic texts in order to help make them available online.

Hat tip to

Cross-posted on Law Library Blog.

2010 Lobbying Disclosure: Observations on Lobbyists’ Compliance with Disclosure Requirements

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) has new report out on 2010 lobbying disclosure:


From the report (see page 2):

Lobbyists were generally able to provide documentation to support the amount of income and expenses reported; however, less documentation was provided to support other items in their disclosure reports. This finding is similar to GAO’s results from prior reviews. There are no specific requirements for lobbyists to create or maintain documentation related to disclosure reports they file under the LDA. For income and expenses, two key elements of the reports, GAO estimates that lobbyists could provide documentation for approximately 97 percent of the disclosure reports for the fourth quarter 2009 and the first three quarters of 2010. According to the documentation lobbyists provided for income and expenses, we estimate the amount disclosed was supported for 68 percent of disclosure reports. After GAO’s review, 21 lobbyists stated that they planned to amend their disclosure reports to make corrections on one or more data elements. As of March 2011, 12 of the 21 amended their disclosure reports.

For political contributions reports, GAO estimates that a minimum of 2 percent of reports failed to disclose political contributions that were documented in the Federal Election Commission database.

The majority of lobbyists who newly registered with the Secretary of the Senate and Clerk of the House of Representatives in the last quarter of 2009 and first three quarters of 2010 filed required disclosure reports for that period. GAO could identify corresponding reports on file for lobbying activity for 90 percent of registrants.

The majority of lobbyists felt that the terms associated with disclosure reporting were clear and understandable. For the few lobbyists who stated that disclosure reporting terminology remained a challenge, areas of potential inconsistency and confusion in applying the terms associated with disclosure reporting requirements have been highlighted. Some lobbyists reported a lack of clarity in determining lobbying activities versus non-lobbying activities. A few lobbyists stated that they misreported on their disclosure reports because they carried information from old reports to new reports without properly updating information.

Hat tip to

Cross-posted on Law Library Blog.