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WSLL @ Your Service November 2017


Browse Topics Quickly with LegalTrac's Topic Finder - Carol Hassler

Keyword searching can be frustrating. Sometimes it is difficult to find connections or related words that might enhance your search. Browsing by topic can be a valuable way to explore new areas of law and find articles that are relevant to your research. Using LegalTrac's Topic Finder helps you to browse topics and keywords in a quick, visual way.

Legal Trac is a searchable index of law reviews, bar journals, and legal newspapers, covering articles published since approximately 1980. It includes over 875 titles, plus law-related articles from over 1,000 additional business and general interest titles. This database is available in all three libraries. You can also log into it from anywhere outside of the library with a free Wisconsin State Law Library card.

Topic Finder Search

There are two ways to use the Topic Finder. If you've already started a search, you can click on the Topic Finder link in the search tools to the right of the results. (Search tools are available via a button in the mobile version of LegalTrac.)

Search tools to reach Topic Finder

To begin your search in the Topic Finder, select it from the main search screen.

Topic Finder on home page

Type one or more keywords into the Topic Finder's search box to begin your subject browse. You can choose between a wheel or colored tiles to display your topics. Select a larger topic to explore subtopics and refine your article results.

Topics Finder animated gif of a search for revocable trust

Relevant articles show up in the next column and can be selected and read immediately. LegalTrac evaluates articles from the top search results for your keyword search. It examines the title, subjects, and the first 100 words of these highly ranked articles in order to create the term lists you'll find in Topic Finder.

LegalTrac's Topic Finder is a useful tool to explore new areas of law, or find new connections to boost your research. It's also fun to use!

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New Books - Kari Zelinka

New Title! Domestic Abuse Guidebook for Wisconsin Guardians Ad Litem: Addressing Custody, Placement, and Safety Issues
Wisconsin Director of State Courts Office, 2017
Call Number: KFW 2506.G83 D66 2017

This book advises Wisconsin guardians ad litem about the complicated job of protecting their clients - usually children - in cases where domestic abuse may be occurring. The guidebook is divided into two sections.

Definitions and Foundations:

  • Family law
  • Criminal law terminology
  • Behavioral definitions
  • Common characteristics of domestic abuse
  • How to distinguish between domestic abuse, high conflict, and normal conflict of separating couples

Four step framework:

  • Identify domestic abuse
  • Define the nature and context of abuse
  • Evaluate the implications of abuse
  • Make informed recommendations that account for domestic abuse
  • The book includes practice points throughout the chapters, tools to screen for domestic abuse, and techniques for handling domestic abuse cases.

New Title! Pet Law and Custody: Establishing a Worthy and Equitable Jurisprudence for the Evolving Family, by Barbara J. Gislason
American Bar Association, 2017
Call Number: KF390.5.A5 G537 2017

This is an exhaustive book on pet law that acknowledges the unique place pets hold in our culture and in the law. The author looks at pet custody and how it intersects with other areas of the law such as tort, contract, criminal, and constitutional law. In the chapter on Hurricane Katrina the author writes about how pet owners were separated from their animals, found by rescue organizations, rehabilitated, and fostered. The author explores how situations played out in applicable case law when the original owners returned to claim their pets.

Other chapters include:

  • Companion animals and the law
  • Estate planning, wills, and trusts
  • Property law and the meaning of possessions
  • Animal cruelty, crimes, and the constitution
  • Dangerous dogs and police powers
  • Science and technology
  • Law office basics, anatomy of a case, and expert testimony

new book shelf
New Titles RSS Feed See our latest New Titles list for a list of new books and other resources.

For assistance in accessing these or other resources, please contact our Reference Desk.


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Tech Tip - Heidi Yelk

Screenshot Tools

Screenshots tool in Firefox

Recently, Firefox introduced a new tool, "Screenshots," which makes it convenient and easy to take screen shots of content on the web. It's convenient because Firefox automatically added the "Screenshots" icon to the tool bar for browser versions 56 and up. And it's easy because it uses a simple drag and click operation.

To use Screenshots, click on the Screenshot icon in the toolbar, upper right corner of the Firefox web browser. It looks like a scissors.

Then click and drag the section of the web page you would like to capture. The .png image can be downloaded or saved to the cloud. Images saved to the cloud are stored in your Firefox profile for 14 days, with the option to delete sooner. To access stored images, click on the Screenshot icon and then the "My Shots" pop up.

Firefox Screenshots is currently a very basic tool, still in beta mode. For more robust screenshot tools, check out Firefox add-ons or extensions for your browser of choice. One of my favorites is Nimbus Screenshot and Screencast. Nimbus includes editing tools that allow you to add graphics and text to screen captures. Basic use requires no account or registration but a free Nimbus account allows you to access saved clips from different devices.

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Library News - Kristina Martinez

WSLL at Mid-America Association of Law Librarians

Wisconsin State Law Library staff participated in a number of events at the Mid-America Association of Law Libraries. Jennifer Waite from Milwaukee County Law Library presented with WSLL alum Lisa Winkler, now at Northwestern Pritzker School of Law as the Clinical Services Librarian, along with Diana Koppang, Library Manager, Neal, Gerber & Eisenberg LLP on "Legal Clinics, Libraries, and Law Schools - Collaborations that Work". Kristina Martinez, Outreach Services Librarian, presented "Calm, Cool, and Communicative: Training Tips on Engaging Your Audience". Staff also created a poster to share at the poster session on WSLL services.

Display materialsCurrent and former library staff

Left to right: Julie Tessmer, Kristina Martinez,Marisa Glazier, and Travis Baptist

Upcoming Class on Identity Theft

Identity theft image
image credit

A representative from the Wisconsin Bureau of Consumer Protection will present information on identity theft and data breach awareness in our newly added December seminar. All are welcome to attend this free class! Registration is encouraged. You can register online or print and drop off a registration form.

Identity Theft & Data Breach Awareness
Tuesday, December 5, Noon - 1 p.m.
Location: David T. Prosser Jr. Library rare book room

Class description: There were 1,093 reported data breaches last year - approximately 36 million records exposed. The more you understand about the common causes of data breaches and the associated identity theft risks, the less vulnerable you are. A representative from the Wisconsin Bureau of Consumer Protection will present information on identity theft and data breach awareness. This one-hour program includes a look at recent data breaches and their common causes. The program will also explain the different types of identity theft, how to recognize it and how to prevent it - including information about Fraud Alerts and Security Freezes.

Library Closures

All three library locations will be closed on Thanksgiving, Thursday, November 23rd. The Dane County Law Library and the Milwaukee County Law Library will remain closed on Friday, November 24th. The David T. Prosser Jr. State Law Library will be open on Friday, November 24th.

All three libraries will be open Friday, November 10th, which is the observed date for Veterans' Day. The library does not close for Veterans' Day.

Call the Reference Desk at 608-267-9696 and leave a voicemail, or Ask a Librarian online while we are closed. We will respond to you the next business day.

Holiday Open House

Please join us for our annual Holiday Open House on Thursday, December 14 from 3:00-4:30 p.m. in the reading room of the David T. Prosser Jr. State Law Library. Enjoy refreshments while you mingle with staff and other library users and try your hand at some light hearted games.

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November Snapshot

Julie Tessmer with Steve Martin and Martin Short

Julie Tessmer, in her capacity as a Navy Reservist, was able to meet Steve Martin and Martin Short, October 2017
Photo provided by Julie Tessmer

We are accepting snapshots! Do you have a photo highlighting libraries, attractions or points of historical interest? Send your photo the editor at carol.hassler@wicourts.gov to be included in a future issue.

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