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Weekly News Digest

September 25, 2018 — In addition to this week's NewsBreaks article and the monthly NewsLink Spotlight, Information Today, Inc. (ITI) offers Weekly News Digests that feature recent product news and company announcements. Watch for additional coverage to appear in the next print issue of Information Today. For other up-to-the-minute news, check out ITIís Twitter account: @ITINewsBreaks.

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'New Bill Would Finally Tear Down Federal Judiciary's Ridiculous Paywall' by Timothy B. Lee

Timothy B. Lee writes in Ars Technica, “Judicial records are public documents that are supposed to be freely available to the public. But for two decades, online access has been hobbled by a paywall on the judiciary’s website, called PACER (Public Access to Court Electronic Records), which charges as much as 10 cents per page. Now Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.) has introduced legislation that would require that the courts make PACER documents available for download free of charge.”

He notes that it would level the playing field—“everyone, rich and poor alike, [would have] equal access to documents that help them understand the legal system. And tearing down the PACER paywall would have benefits that go beyond dollars and cents.” For example, “Opening up PACER would allow reporters, academic researchers, and anyone else writing about the judiciary to link to the judiciary’s official copy of any lawsuit, legal opinion, or other document. That will allow readers to read source documents if they want to and draw their own conclusions.”

Additionally, “Making documents free would also enable journalists and academic researchers to perform large-scale statistical analysis of the legal process, which could help to uncover biases or other problems with the judicial system.”

For more information, read the article.

Send correspondence concerning the Weekly News Digest to NewsBreaks Editor Brandi Scardilli

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