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Law-Related Resources on the Internet and Elsewhere (02 of 12)

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Archive-name: law/net-resources/part02
Version: 6.0

See reader questions & answers on this topic! - Help others by sharing your knowledge
Chapter 0. Introduction to The Legal List.

This chapter gives an overview of The Legal List and of the Internet.

0.1.	About This Book - What is The Legal List?

The Legal List is the short, historical, name of this book, The Legal 
List: Internet Desk Reference. (The history of my self-published version 
is briefly described below.) The purpose of The Legal List is to provide 
a consolidated list of all of the law-related resources available on the 
Internet and elsewhere. There are only two requirements for a resource 
to be listed in The Legal List: 1) it must be law-related, and 2) it 
must be on the Internet. Of course, there are exceptions to this rule. 
First, since The Legal List itself is a law-related resource on the 
Internet, I list a few resources that do not contain any Internet 
resource (e.g. only a USPS mailing address may be provided). Second, a 
few bulletin board systems (BBSs) are included. Most BBSs are accessible 
only via telephone, but more and more are becoming accessible via the 
Internet as well. Third, most of the commercial online services (such as 
Prodigy and America Online) have law-related resources that are only 
accessible to service subscribers.

The Legal List was originally created in the summer of 1992 as I was 
preparing to enter the University of Maine School of Law. Before I 
started law school, I wanted to compile a list of law-related resources 
that I could use as a legal research guide. I've been on the Internet 
since 1984, when I was was a freshman at the Massachusetts Institute of 
Technology (MIT), and, through the years, I have made a habit of jotting 
down noteworthy Internet-accessible resources. In the summer of 1992, 
there were few law-related resources on the Internet, and there was no 
comprehensive listing of these resources. With my personal list of 
noteworthy Internet-accessible resources as a starting point, I started 
to compile a separate list of law-related Internet-accessible resources. 
I called this list my legal list. As I discussed with others what I had 
been doing, they began to request copies of my list. In August, 1992, I 
sent the first version of The Legal List via electronic mail (e-mail) to 
those who had requested it. Since then, The Legal List has been updated 
approximately every six months. What started as a relatively short list 
for my own use has grown into the relatively large book you are now 

Today, The Legal List--or often TLL for short--is available as a 
paperback book and as an ASCII text-only file. Details of how to get The 
Legal List are included in Section 0.1.3. As the print-and-pay portion 
of the copyright notice indicates, The Legal List is free on the 
Internet, but it costs if you print it. I believe that this arrangement 
is consistent with the spirit of providing free information on the 
Internet, while at the same time allowing for a reasonable compensation 
from those who want the value-added benefit of having a paper copy of 
The Legal List. I use both the paperback version and the ASCII text-only 
version of The Legal List. If I want to find something in the ASCII 
text-only version, I open the file with my word-processing software and 
do a key-word search. With the paperback version, I look in the index.

0.1.1.	Disclaimer.

I am committed to providing high-quality information, and as such, I 
have tried to verify all of the information in The Legal List. If I have 
not been able to verify a resource, I have indicated so. The appearance 
of any resource in The Legal List does not constitute endorsement of 
approval of the resource by the author, editors, and publisher of The 
Legal List. The author, editor, and publisher of The Legal List have 
made reasonable efforts to provide correct information, but the author, 
editor, and publisher cannot guarantee the accuracy of the information 
in The Legal List. Updates, additions, and corrections to The Legal List 
should be sent to

0.1.2.	Organization of The Legal List.

The Legal List is primarily organized by the sponsoring organization of 
the law-related resource. There are three main categories of sponsors: 
government organizations (Chapter 2), educational institutions (Chapter 
3), and commercial organizations (Chapter 4). Resources that are 
sponsored primarily by an individual, and not by the organization for 
which the individual works, are included in Chapter 4, because it is 
often difficult to distinguish the sole proprietor from the hobbyist.

Certain typographical conventions should also be pointed out. Items that 
should be interpreted are listed in italics. For example, If I were 
instructed to type your name, I would type Erik J. Heels. Uniform 
Resource Locators (URLs) are listed for each Internet resource. I have 
followed the draft RFC standard dated 03/94, which is available via 
anonymous FTP from as /ftp/internet-drafts/draft-ietf-uri-
url-03.txt. The URL for the URL draft standard is


In general, the URL will be in the format of connection-
method://machine/path. In the above example, the connection-method is 
FTP, the machine is, and the path is /ftp/internet-
drafts/draft-ietf-uri-url-03.txt. In this example, the final part of the 
path name contains the file name, draft-ietf-uri-url-03.txt, but not all 
URLs contain file names.

The following is a chapter summary of The Legal List:

Chapter 1. Talk, Talk, Talk. This chapter describes law-related listserv 
lists, Usenet newsgroups, BBSs, and online services. Listserv lists are 
like magazines in that one can subscribe and unsubscribe. There are 
lists for a wide range of law-related interests such as intellectual 
property (CNI-Copyright), fathers rights (FREE-L), and issues of 
interest to law students (LawSch-L). Usenet is the news network that is 
intertwined with, but independent from, the Internet.

Chapter 2. Government Organizations. This chapter describes law-related 
resources made available by US government organizations. An organization 
in this chapter would most likely have a domain name ending in .gov 
(government). This chapter is divided into two sub-sections: 1) US 
Federal Government Organizations and 2) US State Government 

Chapter 3. Educational Institutions. This chapter describes law-related 
resources made available by US educational institutions. An organization 
in this chapter would most likely have a domain name ending in .edu 
(education). This chapter is divided into two sub-sections: 1) US law 
schools, 2) other US educational institutions.

Chapter 4. Corporations and Organizations. This chapter describes law-
related resources made available by for-profit, nonprofit, and not-for-
profit corporations and organizations. An organization in this chapter 
would most likely have a domain name ending in .com (commercial) or .org 
(organization). Law firms are listed separately--sorted by the state (or 
country) of their main office. This chapter also includes resources 
primarily made available by individuals rather than by an organizations, 
governments, or educational institutions.

Chapter 5. Non-US Resources. This chapter describes law-related 
resources made available by non-US organizations, governments, and 
educational institutions including those made available by the United 

Appendix A. More About the Internet. This appendix contains, for 
example, information about Internet account and domain providers.

0.1.3.	How to Get Paperback and Electronic Copies of The Legal 

Listserv Lists

There are two listserv lists available:

1) Full text delivery of The Legal List - legal-list.

The Legal List is available via e-mail via the listserv list legal-

To subscribe to legal-list, send a message with subscribe legal-list 
your name in the body of the message to the following address.


The next version of The Legal List (as well as other announcements) will 
be mailed to those who subscribe. I always like to hear where you 
learned about The Legal List, so if you also include this information in 
the body of the message, I would greatly appreciate it!

To cancel your subscription to legal-list, send a message with 
unsubscribe legal-list in the body of the message to the following 


2) Announcements only - TLL-announce.

If you wish receive only announcements about the next version of The 
Legal List, send a message with subscribe TLL-announce your name in the 
body of the message to the following address.


TLL-announce subscribes will receive all of the announcements that 
legal-list subscribers receive, but TLL-announce subscribers will not 
receive the next version of The Legal List via e-mail. I always like to 
hear where you learned about The Legal List, so if you also include this 
information in the body of the message, I would greatly appreciate it!

To cancel your subscription to TLL-announce, send a message with 
unsubscribe TLL-announce in the body of the message to the following 


Internet Servers (FTP, Gopher, and WWW).
The Legal List is available via anonymous FTP, Gopher, and WWW:

URL: gopher://

The InterNIC.

The Legal List is one of many resources officially documented by the 
InterNIC Directory and Database Services maintained by the NSF Network 
Systems Center (NNSC) under a contract with AT&T. The Internet Resource 
Guide (IRG) (formerly compiled and maintained by BBN, Inc., for the 
NNSC) has been moved to the Directory of Directories provided by the 
InterNIC Directory and Database Services. In previous versions of The 
Legal List, I wrote [t]he [IRG] is invaluable, and everyone with a 
serious interest in the Internet should maintain a copy. The NNSC's 
stated goal is to expose users to those facilities that will help them 
do their work better. (Internet Resource Guide, Introduction, dated 16 
Apr 90.) I wholeheartedly agree with this goal. Although the IRG in its 
1990-form is being discontinued, the entries have been incorporated into 
the NNSC's new Directory of Directories. The Directory of Directories 
should prove to be an invaluable resource.

For more information, contact:

The InterNIC Directory and Database Services Administrator 
5000 Hadley Road Room 1B13
South Plainfield, NJ 07080
Phone: 1-800-862-0677

URL: gopher://

Usenet FAQ.

The Legal List is periodically posted as a FAQ (a file of Frequently-
Asked Questions) to,, misc.answers, and 
news.answers. It is also available (in about 10 parts) via e-mail and 
anonymous FTP from MIT's Usenet archives. To obtain a copy via e-mail 
from MIT, send a message with the following lines in it (there may be 
more than 10 parts) to

send usenet-by-group/news.answers/law/net-resources/part1
send usenet-by-group/news.answers/law/net-resources/part2
send usenet-by-group/news.answers/law/net-resources/part3
send usenet-by-group/news.answers/law/net-resources/part4
send usenet-by-group/news.answers/law/net-resources/part5
send usenet-by-group/news.answers/law/net-resources/part6
send usenet-by-group/news.answers/law/net-resources/part7
send usenet-by-group/news.answers/law/net-resources/part8
send usenet-by-group/news.answers/law/net-resources/part9
send usenet-by-group/news.answers/law/net-resources/part10


Paperback Copies.

Paperback copies of The Legal List are available from Lawyers 
Cooperative Publishing. The paperback copies are superior in quality to 
the text-only versions distributed on the Internet (e.g. multiple fonts 
are used). The price for each copy is $29.95. The shipping and handling 
for each copy is $3.00 US, $4.00 Canada or Mexico, and $10.00 for all 
other countries. To receive a paperback copy of The Legal List, please 
send, e-mail, or fax a purchase order; or send a check or money order 
payable to Lawyers Cooperative Publishing to:

Lawyers Cooperative Publishing
Attn: The Legal List
Aqueduct Building
Rochester, NY 14694
Phone: 1-800-254-5274
Fax:     1-800-741-1414

Please allow one to two weeks for delivery via United States Postal 
Services mail.

Updates, Additions, and Corrections.

Updates, additions, and corrections to The Legal List should be sent to


0.2.	About the Internet - A Brief Primer on the Internet.

In the last few years, the Internet has become more user-friendly. 
Today, it can be a practical tool for the legal professional.

0.2.1.	What Is the Internet?

A computer network is simply two or more computers connected by wires. 
Computer networks allow interconnected users to share printers and 
files. When one network is connected with another, a internet (lowercase 
i) is formed. The Internet (uppercase I) is the international network of 
interconnected computer networks. Buzzwords like the information 
superhighway, cyberspace, and the national information infrastructure, 
which may be nicknames for the Internet or planned government or 
industry initiatives, are not helpful to understanding what the Internet 
is. Estimates of the number of individuals on the Internet vary widely, 
but it is safe to say there there are probably 50 million users 
worldwide. This makes the Internet the worlds second-largest 
communication network, after the telephone network.

The Internet and the telephone network are not mutually-exclusive--many 
of the computers on the Internet are connected by various types of phone 
lines. Like the telephone network, it matters less to the end user how 
the technology works, and more how to use the technology. A notable 
difference between the Internet and the telephone network is that 
electronic mail (e-mail) sent to users outside of ones home country 
typically costs the same (at least for the end user) as e-mail sent to 
users within ones home country. As a result, individuals from all over 
the world can meet on the Internet in virtual communities, communities 
whose existence is fueled by low-cost Internet access.

Like any other community, the Internet has rules of etiquette called 
netiquette. A quick summary of the rules of etiquette: Never say 
anything in an e-mail message (or a news posting) that you wouldn't say 
to the recipients face or that you wouldn't say in a long-distance phone 
call (i.e. realize that some users pay for incoming e-mail). The power 
to send e-mail--essentially instantly--to anyone in the world is great, 
and it should be understood.

0.2.2.	Internet History - From Research to Prime Time.

The Internet grew out ARPAnet (formed in 1969 as a product of the 
Advanced Research Project Agency), a network of government computers 
connected so that they could exchange information and use each others 
programs. ARPAnet was later discontinued, but other networks (primarily 
government and educational) had been formed and interconnected, and the 
resulting network of networks has come to be known as the Internet. The 
networks that are part of the Internet speak the same language, the 
TCP/IP (Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol) protocols. Some 
of the computers on these networks themselves use the TCP/IP protocols 
(most notably UNIX-based computers) while others (for example, the 
computers that comprise the commercial online services such as 
CompuServe, America Online, and Delphi; as well as those computers on 
BITNET and UUCP networks) do not but are still able to use some TCP/IP 
protocols via gateways.

In 1992, two significant events occurred. First, many of the 
restrictions on commercial use of the Internet were relaxed. Much of the 
Internet's traffic shifted from the National Science Foundations NSFNet 
backbone to commercial networks (such as the Commercial Internet 
Exchange, CIX). Second, and perhaps more significantly, we had a vice 
presidential candidate who had heard of the Internet--and who was 
interested in its potential. These two events resulted in a tremendous 
amount of coverage of the Internet in the popular press. In fact in 
1993, there were more references to the Internet in The New York Times 
than in all previous years combined! And the trend is continuing.

0.2.3.	How to Get On the Internet.

As more people get on the Internet, fewer people will be able to ignore 
the Internet. Do you remember when you added your fax number to your 
business card? It may not be long until you add your Internet e-mail 
address as well. For those lawyers who want to communicate with their 
clients via the Internet (because there surely will be clients who want 
to do so) or who want to shape the future of the law of the Internet, 
now is the time to get on. Heres how.	Commercial Online Services.

The quickest way to get on the Internet is to get an account on one of 
the commercial online services. Currently, the five largest national 
commercial online services are Prodigy, CompuServe, America Online, 
GEnie, and Delphi. Also, there are online services tailored specifically 
for the legal professional (such as Lexis Counsel Connect and Law 
Journal Extra). All of these services offer Internet e-mail, and several 
offer other Internet tools (discussed further below). Also, many offer 
free trial periods and home-access software (much like the Lexis and 
Westlaw software that you may already have). Call and ask for details 
(see the Appendix for addresses and phone numbers of commercial online 
services). For about $10-20 per month, you can ask questions and 
electronically look over peoples shoulders to learn about the Internet.	Reading about the Internet.

Once you are on the Internet, it is relatively easy to find out more 
about the Internet itself. Your Internet provider most likely has 
Internet-related information available online.

One source of information about the Internet available from numerous 
sites on the Internet is the Request For Comments (RFCs). The RFCs were 
originally electronic documents that were circulated for comments and 
that described a new protocol that was needed to help the computers 
connected to the Internet work together more effectively. Today, these 
documents are still referred to as RFCs because each is open for comment 
and subject change as the Internet evolves.

Certain RFCs have remained unchanged for long periods of time and have 
become Internet standards. In addition to documenting standard 
protocols, the RFCs document the history of the Internet since 1969 and 
provide help and information for new Internet users.

To receive introductory information on the Internet via e-mail, send a 
message with document-by-name rfc1594 in the body of the message to You will receive RFC number 1594, Questions 
and Answers for New Internet Users. To receive an index of RFCs (there 
are about 1,800), include document-by-name rfc-index in the text of your 
message. The RFCs can be a road map (or a treasure map) for you if you 
enjoy exploring in this manner.

If you'd rather have books by your side before you get on the Internet, 
you might want to get Brendan P. Kehoe's Zen and the Art of the 
Internet: A Beginners Guide to the Internet (Prentice-Hall, Englewood 
Cliffs, NJ), which is a brief, well-written, easy-to-read overview of 
the Internet. Also, you might want to pick up a copy of Ed Krol's The 
Whole Internet Users Guide and Catalog, Second Edition (O'Reilly & 
Associates, Inc., Sabastopol, CA), which is a comprehensive and clear 
guide to the Internet and is considered essential for new Internet 
users. Finally to learn more about netiquette, read Virginia Shea's 
Netiquette (Albion Books, San Francisco, CA), which documents the 
formerly-unwritten rules of Internet etiquette.	Beyond Dial-In Accounts.

Consider registering your own Internet domain name (the part of an e-
mail address to the right of the @ sign), rather than just having an 
individual account (the part of an e-mail address to the left of the @ 
sign) on somebody else's machine. This is more expensive than simply 
purchasing an account with a commercial online service, but there are 
inexpensive options (such as asynchronous dial-up PPP (Point to Point 
Protocol) and UUCP (Unix to Unix Copy Protocol) accounts), and you will 
gain flexibility and control. For example, you could set up your own FTP 
server, and your e-mail address would be 
rather than See the Appendix for a listing 
of some Internet domain providers.

0.2.4.	A Brief Primer on Some Internet Tools.

There are five Internet tools that you may want to use in your research: 
e-mail, FTP, Gopher, WWW, and WAIS. (Also, you may want to try a local 
BBS.) There is nothing magic about these tools--they are simply computer 
programs (like WordPerfect) that implement standard sets of rules, 
called protocols. (For example, using control-V for paste is a protocol 
on Macintosh computer systems.) No matter what computer you use (whether 
a Macintosh, a DOS-based computer, minicomputer, or mainframe computer) 
these tools should all work essentially the same way.	Electronic Mail (E-mail) Overview.

E-mail is a tool that allows one user on the Internet to send a message 
to another user on the Internet. An e-mail message may contain text or 
pictures and sound encoded as text, but most often it is plain text. The 
various e-mail programs are the most widely used of the Internet tools, 
since the Internet is primarily used for communication between users. 
Users can be human or can be automated e-mail programs. Some of these 
automated programs can send your e-mail message to a group of 
individuals interested in the same type of information. By 
redistributing your e-mail message in this way, the automated e-mail 
program creates a virtual community--a discussion group. The listserv 
family of automated programs allows individuals to subscribe to various 
lists (or discussion groups). The listserv program handles all the 
administrative tasks (adding/deleting individuals from the subscription 
list; redistributing e-mail to all of the lists subscribers), leaving 
individual subscribers free to discuss substantive issues. Ill discuss 
some notable law-related listserv lists in Chapter 1.

When people write a letter and send it from Maine to Finland via the 
United States Postal Services (USPS), they know that the to and from 
addresses must be written in a certain place, that mail may be returned 
if there is a problem, and that mail may be disposed of after sitting 
idly on the shelf of the post office (if, for example, both addresses 
are illegible). Internet e-mail works in much the same way. Some of the 
TCP/IP protocols deal with how to send, return, and dispose of e-mail.

The advantages of Internet e-mail over USPS mail and telephone calls are 
numerous. Unlike with USPS mail, you do not have to find a stamp and 
drive to the nearest mailbox to send Internet e-mail. And unlike the 
telephone, Internet e-mail is never (well, almost never) busy. One 
winter, I planned a ski trip in Maine entirely by e-mail. I was able to 
make sure that each person got the same information, I could keep track 
of RSVPs, and I did not have to worry about making phone calls.	File Transfer Protocol (FTP) Overview.

FTP is a tool that allows users on one computer (the local computer) to 
connect to another computer (the remote computer) for the limited 
purpose of copying files from (and sometimes to) the remote computer. A 
computer that is set up to accept incoming FTP requests from another 
computer is called an FTP server. Usually, the administrators of an FTP 
server will copy certain files to a public directory on the FTP server. 
In this way, information is made available to the Internet community. An 
FTP server is like a bulletin board. The owner of the FTP server can add 
and delete files from the public directory on the server server just as 
notices can be physically tacked to (and removed from) a bulletin board.	FTPMail (FTP via E-mail).

Many resources are available via anonymous FTP. If you do not have 
access to FTP, but you do have access to e-mail, send a message with 
help in the body of the message to the following address.

URL:	FTPMail Example.

For example, to get The Legal List via e-mail from the FTPMail service, 
send a message with the following text in the body of the message to the 
following address. The files will be e-mailed to you in a day or so.

get /pub/LegalList/legallist.txt

URL:	Gopher Overview.

Gopher is named for the mascot of the University of Minnesota, where it 
was developed. Its a menu-driven program, much like an ATM machine at a 
bank. The Gopher server--a computer set up to run the program--is set up 
with a main menu and a series of submenus. When you select a particular 
menu item, you can view documents, run other Internet programs, or 
connect to another Gopher server. (By allowing one Gopher server to 
connect to another, Gopher allows users to look at menus and submenus 
from Gopher servers all over the world--so once you have connected to 
one Gopher server, you can connect to them all.) When you connect to 
another Gopher server, the Gopher program on your local computer 
connects to the Gopher program on the remote computer just long enough 
to copy the menu from the remote computer. This allows many Internet 
users to look at a particular Gopher menu at a given time. In this way, 
using the Gopher program is much like signing a book out of the library 
one page at a time--rather than tying up the pages that others may be 
waiting for. A well-organized Gopher server can make finding information 
on the Internet much easier.

Various client versions of Gopher software are available via anonymous 


Using a local client is faster, but there are also a number of public 
Telnet login sites available:

URL: telnet:// (North America)
URL: telnet:// (North America)
URL: telnet:// (North America)
URL: telnet:// (North America)
URL: telnet:// (Europe)
URL: telnet:// (Australia)
URL: telnet:// (Sweden)
URL: telnet:// (South America)
URL: telnet:// (Ecuador)
URL: telnet:// (Japan)

For more information, contact the Gopher software developers:

Internet Gopher Developers
100 Union St. SE #190
Minneapolis, MN 55455

URL:	GopherMail (Gopher via E-mail).

Gopher is accessible via e-mail with GopherMail. To use GopherMail, send 
a message with help as the subject of the message to one of the 
following GopherMail servers (try to use a site near you).

URL: (France)
URL: (Japan)
URL: (Sweden)

VERONICA (Very Easy Rodent-Oriented Net-wide Index to Computerized 
Archives) is to GopherSpace what Archie, a program developed by the 
McGill School of Computer Science, is to the Internet's anonymous FTP 
archives. (For more information on Archie, see The Internet Resource 
Guide/Directory of Directories (see Section 0.1.3). VERONICA offers a 
keyword search of most of the Gopher-server menu titles in the world. To 
try VERONICA, select it from the Other Gophers menu on the University of 
Minnesota's Gopher server.	World-Wide Web (WWW) Overview.

WWW is a distributed hypertext tool. If you have ever used HyperCard on 
the Macintosh or the help feature on Microsoft Windows, then you have 
used a hypertext system. More accurately, WWW (which was developed by 
CERN, the European Laboratory for Particle Physics) is a hyperMEDIA 
program because graphics and sound--in addition to text--can be 
displayed. A WWW server (a computer set up to run the WWW program) is 
like a deck of cards--you can skip from one location to another via 
links. Unlike Gopher, which presents you with a series of menu items, 
WWW presents the user with documents. Each document, like the menus in 
Gopher, can contain links, which often appear as bold or italicized 
text. When you select a particular link, you can view documents, run 
other Internet programs, or connect to another WWW server. The home page 
for a WWW server is analogous to the main menu for a Gopher server.

To access the Web, you run a browser program that can read and retrieve 
documents. Mosaic is the most popular WWW browser program. The browsers 
can access information via/from FTP, Telnet, Usenet, Gopher, WAIS, and 

The following are some of the browsers accessible by Telnet (try to use 
sites near you):

URL: telnet:// (US)
URL: telnet:// (US)
URL: telnet:// (Switzerland)
URL: telnet:// (Israel)
URL: telnet://sun.uakom.cs (Slovakia)
URL: telnet:// (Finland)	Wide Area Information Servers (WAIS) Overview.

WAIS, the Wide Area Information Servers, is a networked full text 
information retrieval system developed by Thinking Machines, Apple 
Computer, and Dow Jones. WAIS currently uses TCP/IP to connect client 
applications to information servers. Client applications are able to 
retrieve text or multimedia documents stored on the servers. Client 
applications request documents using keywords. Servers search a full 
text index for the documents and return a list of documents containing 
the keyword. The client may then request the server to send a copy of 
any of the documents found. The WAIS software distribution is available 
via anonymous FTP:


If you are in Europe try the following first:


The easiest way to get started (if you do not have access to a WAIS 
client) is to try the WAIS at Thinking Machines:

URL: telnet://	WAISmail (WAIS via E-mail).

If you do not have access to WAIS but you do have access to e-mail, you 
might want to try WAISmail, a WAIS via e-mail program. For more 
information on WAISmail, send a message with help as the subject of the 
message to the following address.

URL: mailto:WAISmail@Think.COM

With WAISmail, you can search WAIS sources and retrieve documents 
identified by your searches. Here is how the search and retrieve 
commands work:

search [<source-name>|<source-name> <source-name> ...] {keywords...}

Where <source-name> is a source name as found in the directory of 
servers (with or without the .src ending). If you use more than one 
source name and enclose them in quotes (as above), WAISmail will search 
both of the sources. If you try to search a nonexistent source, WAISmail 
will e-mail a list of sources to you. The following are some law-related 
WAIS sources that you may want to try:


retrieve <DOCID>

Where <DOCID> is as returned by your search.	Bulletin Board System (BBS) Overview.

There are approximately 50,000 BBSs nationwide, many of which are law-
related. I have included only the essential information about these BBSs 
in Chapter 1, namely the phone number to call and a contact for more 
information. Most of the BBSs run 24 hours per day, many charge a fee, 
many are accessible at various baud rates. Your best bet is to read the 
introductory information carefully for each BBS.

0.2.5.	Practical Uses of the Internet.

The Internet offers a unique duality for the legal professional: 
communication and publication.	Communication via E-mail.

Internet e-mail is nearly instantaneous, never (well, almost never) 
busy, and as easy as writing a letter. The recipient of an e-mail 
message can return (by cutting and pasting) portions of the senders 
original e-mail message with his/her response to provide the necessary 
context that is often lost in US mail or in phone messages.

The power of the Internet as a means of communication cannot be 
understated. Last year, I sent about 10,000 e-mail messages, and I 
received about the same amount. This book was submitted via Internet e-
mail. My clients, friends, and family are all on the Internet, and e-
mail makes it easier for me to keep in touch with all of them.	Publication/Research via Internet Servers.

As a means of publication, the Internet can be used for advertising, 
research, etc. Unlike Internet e-mail, which is primarily two-way 
communication, Internet publication (via FTP, Gopher, and WWW servers) 
is primarily one-way communication--from the publisher to the Internet 
community. The Internet publisher (which includes anybody who chooses to 
make information available on the Internet) can establish an FTP server, 
a Gopher server, and/or a World-Wide Web server. Organizations that are 
not yet prepared to respond to information requests via e-mail can still 
maintain a significant Internet presence by establishing such servers.

On the Internet one can find primary law (cases, statutes, and 
treaties), secondary law (law review articles and the like), and 
tertiary law (discussion groups, unpublished manuscripts and the like). 
The key players in publishing law-related information on the Internet 
are law schools and government institutions. Since the Internet is a 
network of networks, with each network independently owned and operated, 
some of the information is easier to get than other. Ultimately, if the 
case, the statute, or the law review article that the Internet user 
seeks exists on the Internet, it exists as a file on a hard disk (or 
other storage medium) on a computer on a network somewhere on the 
Internet. It may exist in more that one location, and one locations 
version may be more up-to-date than anothers.

0.2.6.	Who Else is on the Internet?

Despite the growing popularity of the Internet as a means for 
communication, it has not yet achieved the same level of acceptance as 
the post office, the telephone, or the fax machine. While law firms 
regularly include postal addresses, phone numbers, and fax numbers on 
their business letters, and business cards, few include Internet 
addresses. Even in the academic community, where Internet access has 
been more common, the Internet hasn't risen to the level of the fax 
machine. Of the top 40 US law schools, Case Western Reserve University 
is the only school whose brochure specifically lists e-mail and WWW 
server addresses.

0.2.7.	The Future of the Internet - Not Just for Scientists 

Formerly used exclusively by government, military, and research users, 
the Internet is now being used by people in all lines of work. As more 
people get on the Internet, fewer people will be able to ignore the 
Internet. And as the Internet expands, there will be more legal issues 
(intellectual property, privacy, and First Amendment issues to name a 
few) to tackle. 

The Internet's ability to convey key information about a law firm, law 
school, or any organization is unique. As a means of communication, the 
Internet can supplement the phone, fax, and paper mail. As a means of 
publication, the Internet provides ways to research and advertise--as 
well as to shop and have fun. In my opinion, letterhead, fax leaders, 
business cards, and e-mail signatures--at least those for organizations-
-should all contain US Postal Service addresses, phone numbers, fax 
numbers, and Internet addresses. Internet addresses can be either e-mail 
addresses (for two-way communication) or Gopher and WWW server addresses 
(for one-way publication). Law firms should be prepared to use all of 
the generally accepted means of communication. Your clients may want to 
have options. Like the fax machine, the Internet is here to stay.

|||| Erik J. Heels, Lawyers Cooperative Publishing
|||| c/o Counterpoint Publishing     
|||| 84 Sherman St.                           Fax: (617) 547-9064
|||| Cambridge, MA 02140              Phone: 1-800-998-4515 x3112

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