- Law School Applications Down
The New York Times recently published a perhaps not surprising article on the decline in the total number of law school applications.
The legal field has had such a dismal run of it the last few years: practicing attorneys laid off, no jobs for new graduates, and bad press and lawsuits for law schools. Given all that, it's not surprising the law doesn't seem like the shining star profession it once appeared. (New York Magazine did a feature on the lawsuits about a year ago.)
However, the ABA has compiled a list of 10 markets that might be decent choice, for a recent grad willing to relocate. They seem to be concentrated in the Southeast, but there are a few in other areas.
- Where Has the Civility Gone?
I have been rather frustrated lately by the seeming inability of some attorneys to both represent their clients and just be nice people at the same time. Is that asking too much?
Indeed, I just got notice of an upcoming CLE entitled "Ethics & Civility in the Practice of Law: Can You Practice Civility and Be a Zealous Advocate?"
Honestly? You can get CLE credit for that? Does that seem silly to anyone else? I'm pretty sure I learned the answer to that question in first grade.
And it turns out that I'm not the only one who's noticed this trend (I don't give myself that much credit). Check out this article with video from the Wall Street Journal recently, in which a judge, in song, implores attorneys to play nicely with one another.
- Farewell to Another Year
I hope everyone had a great 2012. Best wishes for a happy new year!
- Canyon Has a New Home
Over the last few months, I've been following the news about Robert Rauschenberg's Canyon, and the tax uproar it's caused (see here and here for earlier posts).
The IRS agreed to drop the $65 million tax assessment on the work, which can never be legally sold or traded. In return, the owners of the piece, the children of New York art dealer Ileana Sonnabend, agreed to permanently donate the work for public exhibition and waive the tax deduction they would otherwise get for the donation, reports the New York Times.
A bit of a bidding war broke out between the Metropolitan Museum of Art, which has had the work in its collection for some time, and the Museum of Modern Art. The family decided on MoMA as the permanent home for their controversial piece.
- Cell Phones - Subject to Warrantless Search?
Two years or so ago, I wrote a series of posts about the split in the circuits on an issue of privacy - in that case, GPS surveillance. (Posts are here, here, and here.)
There is a new issue coming up, which undoubtedly will find its way to the Supreme Court before too long: cell phones. Circuits (and even courts within the same circuit) have divided on the question of how much privacy it is reasonable to expect where your cell phone is concerned. The New York Times recently published an article on the issue, which highlights some of the divisions.
For now, courts are trying to apply the 1986 Electronic Communications Act to cell phones, but it's not working too well; technology (and our dependence on our phones) has advanced far ahead of the scope of the law. A Senate committee will convene this week to consider changes to the law.
As cell phones become more important in our daily lives, they will surely be a go-to source for police officers or investigators looking for information. But how much access are they allowed without a search warrant? Voice mails? Text messages? Your recorded GPS location? What if you have your phone screen locked? Does that give you added protection for your data? Does the phone company have to alert you if your records are subpoenaed?
No definitive answers yet, but time will tell.