Saturday, January 8, 2011

Open Access Online Casebook Preview

At last - an open access legal text.

A preview of the first open access legal casebook is now available on the eLangdell site. The Legal Informatics Blog reports -
The preview — which consists of portions of Roger C. Park and Douglas D. McFarland’s Evidence for Civil Procedure Students — is available in several formats: ePub, mobi, PDF, and HTML, and is licensed under a Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 3.0 license.
This is a monumentally positive development for law students. The price of casebooks has reached dizzying heights in recent years. Open access casebooks and text will almost certainly be the norm in a few short years.

As a rule, unless a casebook reaches some kind of cult status, most academic authors are not particularly well paid. To produce and publish an open access casebook is akin to publishing an articles in a student edited journal. Thus, publishing open source becomes yet another way to achieve and maintain tenure while benefiting the primary casebook consumers - law students.

You can almost hear the shifting of the foundations of the casebook industry.

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