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BEV BUTULA: Citizen Media Law Project helps lawyers survive in digital world

The Citizen Media Law Project is hosted by Harvard University’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society. The focus of the Citizen Media Law Project website is to “ensure that individuals and organizations involved in online journalism and digital media have access to the legal resources, education, tools, and representation that they need to thrive.”

However, the website can also benefit legal professionals interested in digital media law.

There is a significant amount of information on the website, including a legal guide discussing such topics as dealing with online legal risks, access to government information, intellectual property, and a glossary. The interesting aspect of the glossary is the ability to link directly to sections of the legal guide dealing with the term.

The legal guide’s homepage contains an interactive map for the researcher to select specific states of interest. However, it appears that this “state by state” section is still being developed.

The Citizen Media Law Project site also maintains a Legal Threats Database. The database consists of lawsuits, cease and desist letters, subpoenas, and other legal threats directed at those who engage in online speech. Search options include threat type, court type, party name, location, or just a general keyword search.

It is easy to monitor key issues and news through the site. Researchers can subscribe to various RSS feeds or sign up for their monthly newsletter.

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