NY Investigates Company Selling Fake Followers – Technologist

By William Vogeler, Esq.

What’s the difference between paying for fake followers and selling bots that use stolen identities?

There is no difference because they are both embarrassments. Actually, selling bots with stolen identities as fake followers is also a crime.

That’s what New York’s attorney general says after opening an investigation based on an expose by the New York Times. The newspaper disclosed that social media users buy fake followers — bots using real identities — to raise their public profile.

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Opinion warns against judges doing online research on facts related to cases


In Formal Opinion 478, the ABA Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility addresses the restrictions imposed by the 2007 ABA Model Code of Judicial Conduct on a judge searching the internet for information helpful in deciding a case. The ABA opinion concludes that Rule 2.9(C) of the Model Code prohibits a judge from researching adjudicative facts on the internet unless a fact is subject to judicial notice.

Rule 2.9(C) clearly and definitively declares that “a judge shall not investigate facts in a matter independently, and shall consider only the evidence presented and any facts that may properly be judicially noticed.” Acknowledging the integral part that search engines play in everyday life, Comment 6 to Rule 2.9 bluntly tells judges that the prohibition “extends to information available in all mediums, including electronic.”

Attorneys Demand Clarity as Hundreds Seeking Refuge from War in Yemen Stranded, Unable to Rejoin Families in U.S. | Center for Constitutional Rights


January 23, 2018, New York, NY – Today, the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) and Muslim Advocates (MA) filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request demanding documents from federal agencies related to visa denials to dozens of Yemeni families seeking entry to the U.S., stemming from President Trump’s Muslim Ban. The FOIA request seeks information on the process by which the federal government has purportedly agreed to grant case-by-case waivers from the Muslim Ban to certain individuals from countries whose citizens are otherwise denied entry to the United States. Despite the administration’s claim that the waiver process would be “robust,” the organizations have received reports of en masse denials to people who should, according to the administration’s guidelines, be eligible for a waiver, casting doubt on whether a meaningful process exists at all. The request is directed at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the Department of State, Customs and Border Protection, and the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).


The Japanese American Evacuation and Resettlement: A Digital Archive – The Bancroft Library – UC Berkeley Library

From the University of California’s Bancroft

Library, with financial support from the National

Parks Service, comes this powerful digital archive

dedicated to the experiences of Japanese-Americans

who were incarcerated in internment camps during

World War II. This collection features almost

150,000 documents, including papers, photographs,

maps, and personal archives from the Bancroft

Library. These documents have been digitized by

Calisphere and the Online Archive of California. The

collection includes the personal papers of writer

Yoshiko Uchida (Invisible Thread; Picture Bride),

who was interned at camps in California and Utah;

the papers of California attorney general Robert

Walker Kenney; and a collection of recorded

interviews with individuals who spent time in

internment camps (available in the multimedia

section). In addition to viewing this collection

through Calisphere and the Online Archive of

California, visitors can explore this collection by

internment camp via an interactive map.

Copyright © 2017 Internet Scout Research Group – http://scout.wisc.edu

Traveling lawyers get new protections in device searches at border


Hundreds of American lawyers will be traveling to Vancouver, British Columbia, for the ABA Midyear Meeting next week. As they pass through U.S. and Canadian customs, they and their electronic devices can be searched.

But through the efforts of the ABA, the Department of Homeland Security has recently clarified its policies on how it intends to protect privileged information during its searches.

The ABA contacted Homeland Security in May with its concerns about the potential for violations of attorney-client privilege at the nation’s borders in a letter written by then-ABA President Linda Klein.

Klein said the ABA was concerned about the breadth of the authority given to U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents to search lawyers’ electronic devices “without any showing of reasonable suspicion.” She asked that DHS clarify the directive on electronic device search and seizure, originally written in 2009, to protect attorneys and their clients.

“We recognize that security at the nation’s borders is of fundamental importance, and we acknowledge that lawyers traveling across the border with laptops and other electronic devices containing confidential client documents and other information could become subject to routine searches by CBP and [Immigration and Customs Enforcement] agents,” Klein wrote. “But just as border security is fundamental to national security, so too is the principle of client confidentiality fundamental to the American legal system.”

According to ABA President Hilarie Bass, senior DHS officials met with the ABA after the letter was received, and CBP released a revised directive.


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Justice Department threatens subpoenas in showdown with sanctuary cities and states



The U.S. Justice Department on Wednesday demanded documents from 23 sanctuary jurisdictions and threatened subpoenas if they fail to comply.

The letters are intended to find out whether police officers in the jurisdictions are failing to share information with federal immigration authorities, according to a DOJ press release. The Justice Department cites a federal law requiring information sharing, and says jurisdictions that don’t comply aren’t eligible to receive Byrne Justice Assistance Grants.

Jurisdictions receiving letters include the states of Illinois, California and Oregon, as well as the cities of Chicago, New York City and Los Angeles. USA Today, the Washington Post and the New York Times have stories.

The letters asked the jurisdictions to provide “any orders, directives, instructions or guidance to your law enforcement employees.”


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Group accusing US border patrol of water sabotage sees member arrested | US news | The Guardian


Hours after a humanitarian group released videos showing border patrol agents kicking over water bottles left for migrants in the Arizona desert, a volunteer for the organization was arrested and charged with harboring undocumented immigrants.

Scott Daniel Warren, 35, a volunteer with the group No More Deaths, faces a federal charge of harboring two people in the country illegally.


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Hey Siri, read me the news – iPhone J.D.

 by Jeff Richardson,


To start, just say “Hey Siri, read me the news” or “play the news” or “give me the news” or something like that.  Siri will start playing the latest episode of the NPR News Now podcast, which is updated every hour (so it is always fresh news) and only lasts 3-5 minutes (so you quickly get the highlights).  I tried it out a few different times yesterday.  It worked great, and the news updates were interesting and timely.

Ed. Note:  You also have the option of changing the news source.

Avvo to be acquired by Internet Brands, parent of WebMD and Martindale-Hubbell, in major exit for Seattle-based legal marketplace – GeekWire

Seattle-based Avvo, which runs an online legal directory, marketplace and reviews site, has entered into an agreement to be acquired by Internet Brands, a large holding company whose portfolio includes companies such as eDoctors, CarsDirect Connect and WebMD.

Internet Brands is especially strong in the legal arena, holding interests in Lawyers.com, AllLaw.com, Martindale-Hubbell and Nolo. That strength played a big role in the company’s decision to be acquired.

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Artificial Lawyer Interview: Jake Heller, CEO, Casetext – Artificial Lawyer


Artificial Lawyer recently caught up with Jake Heller, the co-founder and CEO of Casetext, ahead of the legal AI company’s launch of two new features for its litigation analysis platform.

So, first, let’s hear about the two new aspects of the natural language processing-driven platform that is seeking to change the way lawyers approach legal research.

The new capability Black Letter Law enables users to quickly identify axiomatic statements of law, which is particularly useful for lawyers researching outside of their core practice areas, ‘as well as for litigators hunting for foundational case law to support a brief or oral argument’.

Meanwhile the new Holdings feature is the largest searchable collection of concise case summaries ever assembled, the company says. To create Holdings, Casetext applied a tactic they call ‘judicial language processing’, exploiting patterns within the US case law corpus to excerpt summaries directly from judicial opinions. This allows ‘any lawyer looking to quickly familiarise herself with the crux of a judicial opinion and nimbly compare and contrast similar holdings across a particular area of law’ says Casetext.

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