Mumia: What Really Happened?

For the better part of twenty-five years, emotions have run high on the subject of Mumia Abu-Jamal. Convicted in 1982 for the murder of Philadelphia police officer Daniel Faulkner, Abu-Jamal is to some an unrepentant cop-killer, and to others a gifted and misunderstood champion of justice. Observers on both sides were handed a new development […]

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The Last Quack: The University of Oregon’s IP Battle with Internet Sensation Supwitchugirl

This football season, as many attempt to hone their “Teach Me How to Ducky” skills and zealously root for the nation’s top football program, local Internet rap sensation Supwitchugirl slowly contemplates its next licensing deal with the UO DuckStore. If it’s not licensing with what is considered one of the largest sports-merchandising agencies in the […]

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Reporter Sources and Confidentiality

Our liberty cannot be guarded but by the freedom of the press, nor that be limited without danger of losing it. –Thomas Jefferson to John Jay, 1786 A press that is free to publish what it wants without fear of government censorship or intervention is one of the great bulwarks of liberty. The authors of […]

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High Times for a Test of the Castle Doctrine

Nobody wants to start their day by facing down a couple of knife-wielding thugs in the kitchen, but eventually it happens to everyone. On January 7, 2009 it was Michael Arcays turn. When Daniel Bartlett and Justin Campbell broke through his front door that morning, Arcay was waiting for them. When the two intruders threatened […]

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Word of the Week: Quiet Enjoyment

Each week we select a legal term or phrase that’s commonly misunderstood, interesting, or may save you from living under a leaky roof. This weeks word is the latter. Imagine you’re signing a lease on an apartment. A provision in the contract makes an assurance: so long as you keep up the rent payments and […]

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Word of the Week: Ex Parte

Each week we select a legal term or phrase that’s commonly misunderstood, interesting, or in Latin. This weeks word is the latter.  Ex parte is a Latin phrase which, translated literally, means from the part. In the legal world, motions or proceedings are held ex parte when only one of the parties is present and […]

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Word of the Week: Esquire

Each week we select a legal term or phrase that’s commonly misunderstood, interesting, or pretentiously tossed about. This weeks word is the latter. The term esquire, or Esq. as it is commonly abbreviated, has evolved considerably over its six centuries of existence, and today is one of the many relics of the British colonization of […]

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Representing Yourself Pro Se: Crafty Legal Strategy or Fool’s Errand?

There’s a common saying in the legal community: a lawyer who represents himself has a fool for a client. If this old adage is true, it applies with equal vigor to those who decide to represent themselves without any legal training. Last December, a state court judge allowed 81-year-old Marc Benayer to represent himself, pro […]

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LinkedIn to Facebook: The Risks of Tweeting in the Workplace

In the Digital Age we live in now, everything you could want to know about a person is likely just a click away. From the TV shows “liked” on Facebook to today’s lunch as the latest tweet, there is a smorgasbord of information available out in the Interwebs; and for better or worse, more and […]

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Are Your Cell Phone Text Messages Safe from Government Eyes?

Politics just wouldn’t be politics without scandals, and the scandal last week in Michigan was a doozy. Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, after having testified in open court that he’d never been romantically involved with his chief of staff, found himself in hot water with the law (and, we assume, his wife) when it was revealed […]

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