Friday, June 27, 2008

Around the Blogosphere: June 2008

* Spain has declared by statute that Apes are legal persons. (U.K. Guardian). Also, last month, the EU Court of Human Rights accepted an appeal on the issue of whether Apes are legal persons under the EU Charter. (LiveScience, Associated Press). Fans of Arthur C. Clark, a Science Fiction author famed for accurately predicting many scientific and cultural developments of the past century, may recall that his second-to-last book, Sunstorm, published in 2005, describes a not-to-distant future where apes and highly advanced artificial intelligence systems are considered "legal persons (non-human)."

* According to a post on the Consumer Law and Policy Blog, "Bounce loans, the Fed rule and the unbanked," the Federal Reserve is now considering a rule to curb abusive overdraft fees by banks.

* Although the deadline for submissions has already passed, Above the Law was recently looking for a full time writer. Apparently you can actually make a living doing this.

* From the WSJ Law Blog, the Ninth Circuit recently ruled that federal employees have a right to privacy under the Fourth Amendment that extends to work phones and e-mail accounts.

* At the New York Personal Injury Law Blog, Alan Turkewitz is posting a play-by-play from his recent motor vehicle trial. Among the interesting points, he explains that he used a peremptory challenge on a juror who's son is going to Iraq because he does not want the juror comparing his client's trauma to what his son is going through, and struck another juror because she never smiled. He also structured his opening starting from the middle so as to emphasize how the accident changed his client's life.

* The US Supreme Court overturned Washington DC's gun ban, rendering its first Second Amendment decision in many, many years. (WSJ Law Blog).

* Carolyn Elefant at's Inside Opinions has two great posts on law firm marketing: one on the need for video entries on your website, here ; and the other linking to ten law firm marketing tips from Larry Bodine at The Law Marketing Blog, here.

* LinkedIn - a professional social networking site -- has been valued at 1 Billion dollars. ( Inside Opinions). More importantly, I recently opened a LinkedIn profile.

* In an employment discrimination fee award decision, Rozell v. Ross-Holst , courtesy of Daniel Schwartz' Connecticut Employment Law Blog, the SDNY approved a $600 per hour fee for a partner specializing in employment law

* Over at How Appealing, Howard Bashman and Judge Richard Posner are engaged in an entertaining reparte. According to Mr. Bashman, the phrase "ostriches when frightened bury their head in the sand" would imply that multiple ostriches share a single head; but Judge Posner retorts that to say "ostriches hide their heads in the sand" would imply that each ostrich has multiple heads.

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