Court Citation of Blogs: Updated 2007 Study

blogstickies.jpgOur terrific intern, Sam Yospe has put together an update of Ian Best’s very useful 2006 study on Courts’ citation of blogs.

Sam ran a search for court citation of law blogs in the last twelve months. I asked him to lump citations into three categories: sources of legal argument, sources of facts, and sources of documents. Here’s what he came up with.

Legal Sources

• Trenwick America Litigation Trust v. Ernst & Young, et. al., 2006 906 A.2d 168; 2006 Del. Ch. LEXIS 139

o Citation to and in depth discussion of a post appearing on Professor Bainbridge’s blog.

• U.S. v. Presley, 2006 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 95063 *

o Citation to a post on Sentencing Law and Policy Blog.

• U.S. v. Kandirakis, 2006 441 F. Supp. 2d 282; 2006 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 53243

o Cites Prawfs Blawg, discussing a post by Dan Markel.

• Boxer X, a/k/a Stanley Farley v. Harris, 2007 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 45149

o Cites a legal argument in Crime and Federalism

• Desimone v. Barrows, et. al 2007 Del. Ch. LEXIS 75

o Cites argument from Professor Bainbridge’s blog post .

o Cites argument from Larry Ribstein’s blog post at Ideoblog.

o Cites argument from a post on Eric Chiappinelli’s blog.

• In Re Tyson Foods, Inc. Consolidated Shareholder Litigation, 2007 919 A.2d 563; 2007 Del. Ch. LEXIS 19

o Cites argument fro Professor Bainbridge’s blog post.

o Cites argument from Larry Ribstein’s blog post at Ideoblog:

Factual Sources

• U.S. v. Kandirakis, 2006 441 F. Supp. 2d 282; 2006 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 53243

o Cites Sentencing Law and Policy (generally and an entry of July 31, 2006) as a factual authority (regarding how many criminal cases in which the sentences were within the Guideline were reversed as unreasonable).

• Ohio v. Foster, 206 109 Ohio St. 3d 1; 2006 Ohio 856; 845 N.E.2d 470; 2006 Ohio LEXIS 516

o Cites Sentencing Law and Policy generally for updates on Blakely and general material on sentencing.

Sources of Documents

• U.S. v. Grier, 2006 475 F.3d 556; 2007 U.S. App. LEXIS 2483

o Citation to memorandum on www.federaldefenders.org.

• U.S. v. Alvarado, 2007 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 24816

• U.S. v Martinez, 2007 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 23601

• U.S. v. Sorto, 2007 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 7937

o Citation to memorandum on Law and Sentencing Policy.

• U.S. v. Willis, 2007 479 F. Supp. 2d 927; 2007 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 23290

o Citation to legislative briefing on Law and Sentencing Policy.

Total Citations

Sentencing Law 7

Bainbridge 3

Ribstein 2

Prawfs 1

Chiappinelli 1

Federal Defenders 1

Crime and Federalism 1

Overall, if these data are accurate, this seems like a bit of a slowdown in the citation rate of blogs by Courts, maybe due to a slight lowering of the boil on the sentencing revolution. It is also worth noting that the federal and state courts have not yet felt a need to cite this Blog, which has to signal something (good) about the continuing acuity and judgment of our hard-working judges.

[Update: We missed (at least) one cite, and have made a change above.]

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3 Responses

  1. One of the interesting things about citing to a blog posting is not only that the blog may disappear, but that it can be changed. Edited. After the citation. What thenOne of the interesting things about citing to a blog posting is not only that the blog may disappear, but that it can be changed. Edited. After the citation. What then<

  2. One of the interesting things about citing to a blog posting is not only that the blog may disappear, but that it can be changed. Edited. After the citation. What then?

  3. Sam says:

    I searched for and read these citations, so I would like to make a few observations. Only in a few of the citations did the courts actually quote from the blog posts. Quoting could solve the editing problem to some extent, because even if the blog post is not static, the original quote would appear in the case. A few of the citations included the date that the blog was accessed. This should probably be required for citing blog posts, as well as any internet source. However, finding the posts (whether they are original or not) can be a problem. Only a few of the cases cited the date of the post. All provided links to the post, but in many cases the links did not work and I looked in the blog archives.