Archive for November, 2008

December Issue of AALL Spectrum Online

dec08_coverThe December issue of AALL Spectrum is available online in PDF format. This month’s articles feature:

The “Member to Member” responses provide more tips on going green at work or at home.

Paper copies mailed out to members on Friday, November 21, so look for them to hit your mailboxes soon.

Lastly, we would like to apologize in advance for the printing error on the paper copy of the Members’ Briefing. Due to a printer error, the file name appears over the text on all four pages; the online version of the Members’ Briefing is correct. AALL Spectrum apologizes for the error, and we are working with our printer to get compensation for the error and to ensure that it does not occur again in the future.

Review of “Intellectual Property Culture”

intellectual-property-culture-coverIntellectual Property Culture: Strategies to Foster Successful Patent and Trade Secret Practices in Everyday Business, by Eric M. Dobrusin and Ronald A. Krasnow, Oxford University Press, 2008, softcover, 392 pages, $135, ISBN13: 978-0-19-533833-1, ISBN10: 0-19-533833-2.

 

Intellectual property (IP) encompasses patents, trademarks, copyrights, trade secrets, and related intangible rights. This one-volume reference provides a thorough introduction to IP rights and strategies. The book’s stated purpose is “to help attorneys and executives build a business culture in which the development and management of intellectual property is as painless–and productive–as possible.” On these terms it succeeds completely, touching on all fundamental concepts of this important area of law, with an emphasis on patent protection. 

 

The first several chapters cover how to create a vital intellectual property culture in an organization. Early sections include discussions on the reasons IP is important, training employees on handling IP processes and procedures, determining costs involved, choosing suitable IP counsel, and how to respect both your own and others’ IP rights. Later chapters cover strategies for developing, sharing, and transferring intellectual property and the importance of confidentiality and security in protecting IP assets. The final chapter contains extremely useful guides to international considerations. The book concludes with several case studies and appendices of sample agreements and policies.

 

The book is full of sound practical advice (such as “only get patents that you will walk into court and enforce,” and “good IP cultures will distinguish between innovation and patentability”). Methods for protecting various types of IP are discussed. Sections are devoted to both offensive and defensive IP management strategies. Licensing, determining royalty rates, and deciding when litigation is the appropriate course of action are explained at length. I particularly enjoyed the section on understanding the nuances of patent claim construction. The explanation of patent validity is also very enlightening. Chapters are peppered with interesting charts that detail some of the concepts explained.

 

The text suffers from numerous annoying typos and at least one unfortunately placed hyphen that renders a URL difficult to decipher. Important terms are sparsely defined; a separate glossary would have been helpful instead of referring the reader to Black’s Law Dictionary. The book is heavily footnoted with numerous references to significant case citations with explanations of their importance. These citations definitely enhance the text, but a separate index of cases would have been welcome. However, these minor transgressions do not significantly detract from this excellent work.

 

The authors have extensive intellectual property experience, evident in this publication. The book is an excellent overview of the complexities of successfully acquiring and protecting IP. It is recommended for any law student, attorney, or librarian who needs an introduction into understanding and managing this increasingly important practice area. It is also highly recommended for business executives responsible for intellectual property management and decision-making. Attorneys specializing in intellectual property or those with an existing background in IP will probably prefer more comprehensive, in-depth procedural treatises.

 

Reviewed by Donna M. Fisher (Dfisher@senniger.com), law librarian at Senniger Powers LLP in St. Louis.

Review of Now What Makes Juries Listen

Hamlin, Sonya. Now What Makes Juries Listen. Eagan, MN: Thomson West, 2008, hardcover, 600p, $169.

Now What Makes Juries Listen[i] begins by describing the three major societal changes that have had the most effect on the practice of law, the legal system, and jury behavior. These changes are the advances in technology, the multigenerational make-up of our society, and the multicultural diversity of our society. Hamlin addresses these changes in the first three chapters of her book and then offers many techniques to combat these changes so that an attorney can clearly present his case to the jury from voir dire to closing argument.

 

In the first chapter, Hamlin lays out the technological advances that have occurred in the 21st century and how these changes have changed the manner in which attorneys must present their cases so as to engage today’s jurors. In the second chapter, Hamlin discusses the generational make-up of today’s society and the different characteristics of each generation. She also describes how the characteristics of each generation play a role in the way people communicate, process information, and make decisions. In chapter three, Hamlin discusses the multicultural make-up of today’s society and how each ethnic group’s cultural beliefs influence the decisions its members make. In each chapter, the author provides a summary of the issues she discusses, why they are important, and how they influence the ways attorneys work. In addition, there is a “three-chapter wrap-up” and a check-list of issues and problems discussed at the end of chapter three.

 

In chapter four, Hamlin discusses techniques to improve communication skills and the attorney’s image in the eyes of the jury. She discusses basic communication skills, such as techniques used to grab the audience’s attention, ways  to keep the audience engaged, how to develop clear presentations, how to be believable, and how to be persuasive. This is followed by a detailed discussion of how attorneys should dress to portray the right image to the jury.

 

Hamlin argues in chapter five that visual presentations are needed in the courtroom today to keep jurors interested, to improve their understanding of the case, and to enhance the jury’s memory. The author then provides suggestions on how to create clear visual messages that are persuasive and make it easier for the jury to remember the evidence presented during the trial.   

 

Starting with voir dire in chapter six and ending with closing arguments in the book’s final chapter (chapter 13), Hamlin moves through the trial process, providing the reader with techniques to prepare for every aspect of the trial, as well as providing new techniques to effectively present their cases in ways that combat the societal changes attorneys face today. Hamlin provides a detailed “how to” guide for conducting an effective voir dire and for making memorable opening statements and closing arguments. She provides the reader with techniques for developing effective direct examinations. She provides suggestions for nonverbal communication skills that enhance an attorney’s cross examination. She discusses the issues that arise when developing and conducting effective direct and cross examinations of expert witnesses. She also provides suggestions for how to develop visual presentations of the expert’s testimony so as to leave the jury with a lasting impression of the expert’s opinion.

 

There have been many changes in today’s society that have affected the practice of law and the manner in which attorneys present their cases to the jury. Likewise, the same societal changes have affected the way today’s juries process information and make their decisions. Hamlin felt compelled to write Now What Makes Juries Listen to alert the legal profession to these changes and to provide attorneys with new options and techniques to reach the jury most effectively. This has resulted in an excellent resource for all types of law libraries. It can be utilized by law students to introduce them to the basics of communicating with a jury, while making them aware of the make-up of today’s jury pool. Furthermore, this book is an excellent resource for young associates who need a “refresher” on trial techniques and effective communication skills. Finally, this book will revitalize the litigation skills of a seasoned attorney, providing new techniques that will improve his communication skills and his relationship with the jury.

Reviewed by Christine I. Hepler, associate director of the University of Maine School of Law Garbrecht Law Library.

[i] This book was written to update Hamlin’s two previous publications: What Makes Juries, published by Harcourt Brace Javanovich Publishers, New York, NY, 1985, and  What Makes Juries Listen Today, published by Glasser Legal Works, Little Falls, NJ, 1998.


Review of Honor & Respect

honor-respect-cover1Hickey, Robert. Honor & Respect: The Official Guide to Names, Titles, and Forms of Address. Columbia, S.C.: The Protocol School of Washington, 2008. 552 pp.; hardcover; $75.

 

I turned to the Protocol School of Washington’s Honor & Respect to answer a specific question: If I am ever introduced to a former vice president of the United States, how should I address him? The question is not purely hypothetical for me; one former vice president does appear now and again where I work. But if you are neither one of my colleagues here in Walter F. Mondale Hall nor a librarian at the Indiana University School of Law-Indianapolis, you might not expect to run into former vice presidents in the line of duty. In that case, would Honor & Respect be a useful addition to your library?

 

It could be a useful addition to well-stocked academic law libraries or libraries that serve patrons who frequently conduct business with government officials, especially from abroad. For most law libraries, however, it would be hard to argue that Honor & Respect is an essential addition. Its information is more detailed and specialized than most law libraries’ clientele would need. This lukewarm endorsement is not due to any failing on the part of the author or publisher. The book succeeds at the goal implied by its subtitle: The Official Guide to Names, Titles, and Forms of Address.

 

It is, in fact, an excellent guide to names, titles, and forms of address for all kinds of officials: not only government, military, and diplomatic officials, but also religious, academic, and business officials. This guide is the most complete and up-to-date one I was able to find, especially concerning foreign and international officials.

 

Hickey includes a chapter on each of the following: Canadian officials; Australian officials; British officials, royalty, and nobility; international officials; and tribal officials. A section titled “Country Names & Officials” lists every country on earth and includes information on its high officials and how they should be addressed. Other useful features of the book include an extensive glossary, a chapter on performing introductions, and a detailed table to help determine the relative precedence of a wide array of officials. Former vice presidents rank just above members of the House of Representatives, for example.

 

By what standards can Honor & Respect be considered “official”? Hickey, in the “Author’s Note,” claims that the book is descriptive rather than prescriptive. “It is not an arbiter of what is correct: It is a resource bringing together the most formal forms of address,” he writes. The book does not read as detached description, however, and it is doubtful whether any potential readers will use it as such, especially given the “official” in the subtitle. But even if “official,” in this context, simply indicates that the guide is the official one used by its publisher, the Protocol School of Washington, this is important. While there are many protocol and etiquette schools, the Protocol School of Washington is one of the most established and is well respected, and Robert Hickey is the school’s deputy director.

 

One thing Honor & Respect is not—and does not claim to be—is a detailed guide to etiquette or protocol. If you are looking for a book that will give your law students or young associates a strong foundation in business etiquette, this is not the book for you. If what your patrons need is not more information on protocol, but less—say they only need occasional help with simple questions like the correct form of address for a former vice president—Honor & Respect can help, but it might be overkill. For basic, U.S.-centric information, more readily available sources exist, such as general etiquette books or the appendices at the ends of larger dictionaries.

 

However, if you want a detailed, comprehensive, and up-to-date guide to names, titles, and forms of address—one that does not begin and end with the standard U.S. officials—there is no better source than Honor & Respect.

 

Oh, and the living former vice presidents of the United States should be addressed as Mr. Mondale, Mr. Bush, Mr. Quayle, Mr. Gore, and—soon—Mr. Cheney.

 

Reviewed by Sarah Yates, foreign law and rare book cataloger at the University of Minnesota Law Library.

Review of Electronic Discovery and Records Management Guide

Electronic Discovery and Records Management Guide: Rules, Checklists, and Forms(2009 edition). Jay E. Grenig, Browning E. Marean and Mary Pat Poteet, eds. Thomson West, 2008. 769 pp.; paperback; includes CD-Rom; $149

 

It is estimated that more that 93% of all communications are digital. Ninety-eight percent of all business records are now electronic, and 80% of them are never converted to paper or any other tangible form. (from the Preface)

 

The nature of the discovery process in litigation has undergone a metamorphosis with the advent of electronic documents and records. The law and practice around discovery rules have rushed to keep pace. This well-organized and comprehensive desk reference guide brings together resources for the practitioner and researcher on both the discovering and responding sides of the discovery process. This title is a must-have for any litigation practice or department, and is recommended for any law collection (firm; academic; or state, court, or county), information science collection, and business collection.

 

The authors, a law professor from Marquette University Law School (Grenig) and two practicing attorneys from DLA Piper in San Diego (Marean and Poteet), are highly-qualified experts in the field. Professor Grenig has taught and written extensively in the area of discovery. He is the managing editor of Electronic Discovery and Records Management Quarterly. Attorneys Marean and Poteet both serve on DLA Piper’s Electronic Discovery Readiness and Response Group. Marean is a member of the Sedona Conference, a law and policy think tank that developed the Sedona Principles Best Practices Recommendations & Principles for Addressing Electronic Document Production (Sedona Principles). Poteet is a founding member of the Electronic Discovery Reference Model (EDRM), a guidelines and standards setting body.

 

The book is presented in an outline format and is divided into four parts and 19 chapters. Part one is a three-chapter introduction. Part two covers records management in four chapters. Part three includes seven chapters under the heading, “Obtaining Discovery of Electronically Stored Information”; while Part four addresses, “Responding to Discovery of Electronically Stored Information” in five chapters.

 

The organization of information within each chapter is excellent. Each chapter begins with a table of contents followed by bibliographic citations to additional resources for that chapter’s topic. Every chapter is divided into three sections: guidelines, checklists, and forms. Each section is further divided into numbered subsections. The subsection number, rather than the page number, serves as the finding key for the 19-page index.

 

The authors have also included the text and Advisory Committee Notes of the 2006 and 2007 amendments to the discovery rules of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, and the text of the Sedona Principles. All of the forms for each chapter are provided in Word format on the accompanying CD-Rom for ease of reproduction. The CD is not an e-version of the book, so it won’t serve as a finding aid.

 

Because of the comprehensive coverage of the subject, the book itself is a bit unwieldy at almost 800 pages. The book is perfect bound, and the binding in the center of the book failed almost as soon as it was opened. In a practice environment where this title would be well-used, it might be advisable to reinforce the binding as soon as it is received for processing.

 

The 2009 edition replaces the 2008 edition. This edition includes an analysis of Rule 502 of the Federal Rules of Evidence, which was enacted on September 19, 2008 (Pub. L. No. 110-322, 122 Stat. 3537). Given the rapidly changing environment of this area of litigation, I would expect that updates will be planned, but no schedule is published.

 

Reviewed by Tracy L. Thompson, executive director of the New England Law Library Consortium, Inc.

Apply Today for the AALL 2009 Management Institute

From dealing with difficult people to developing a strategic plan for the library to building partnerships, new law library managers have a lot on their plates. The AALL Management Institute, held March 19-21, 2009, in Tampa, Florida, will provide new and aspiring managers from all types of law libraries the opportunity to collaborate in small groups and learn from their colleagues as they develop the skills to manage with confidence today.

LEARN HOW TO:

Build and nurture a professional network
Develop effective communication
Negotiate and handle difficult situations
Develop a strategic plan
Take on project management
Champion the library’s role within the institution and build partnerships.

The application deadline is December 15. Apply online today!



Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.