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Florida Supreme Court to stream proceedings on Facebook Live

   Image by Anthony Quintano (via Flickr)

Beginning in February, all arguments before the Florida Supreme Court will be shown on Facebook Live. While arguments can already be viewed online through the court’s website, airing its proceedings on Facebook will make them easily accessible to the social media platform’s two billion users. Facebook Live allows those watching to post comments about the proceedings. According to Florida Public Information Officer Craig Waters, posts will be allowed unless they’re inappropriate.  Will the Florida Supreme Court be the first of many to broadcast live on Facebook? Give your input on this story in Open Court, exclusively on NCSC's Connected Community (login required).

The Shooter, the Victims, the Aftermath – Three-part podcast series presented by the Ninth Circuit Court of Florida
By Karen Levey, Chief Deputy Court Administrator, Ninth Judicial Circuit (Orlando, Florida)

The Ninth Judicial Circuit Court of Florida (Orlando) podcast, Open Ninth, recently undertook a three-part audio project to honor the victims of the 1984 Orange County Courthouse Mass Shooting.  January 10th marked the anniversary of when lone gunman Thomas Provenzano entered the Orange County Courthouse, killing one bailiff and wounding two others, in a single event that resonates louder than ever as one of the first events of this kind in Central Florida. Listen in as the court honors the heroes of that tragic day with a three-part podcast series of testimony and eyewitness accounts.  The podcast starts its discussion with the days leading up to the shooting. Then hear the accounts of that terrible day by those impacted by the event.  Finally, the podcast concludes with a look at where the court is today and how the actions of one man changed the community forever.


Georgia justice shares details about the state Supreme Court's new Twitter account



In a radio interview on the local NPR affiliate, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of Georgia Keith Blackwell discussed the recent launch of the Georgia Supreme Court’s Twitter account. Public Information Officer Jane Hansen helped push for establishment of the feed, @SupremeCourtGA. Justice Blackwell said the Court will use Twitter strictly for informational purposes and as another platform for communicating with the public. Since its first tweet in September, announcing the Court would be closed due to Hurricane Irma, Hansen has posted links to summaries of opinions and cases due for oral arguments, as well as media releases and Court events. The justices will not, Justice Blackwell said, engage in back-and-forth comments or answer criticism on Twitter. Calling himself a “lurker” who follows Twitter for breaking news, he said he is a Twitter consumer, not a Twitter producer. “I don’t think that’s appropriate. The court speaks through its work product, and its work product is its opinions,” Justice Blackwell said.

Indiana Federal Court celebrates bicentennial with release of documentary

To commemorate the Indiana Federal Court's bicentennial in 2017, the court released an hour-long documentary, featuring reenactments, expert interviews and professional cinematography. The video features three key cases that addressed “stormy events” in the state. Ex parte Milligan, involving a Southern sympathizer at the end of the Civil War, led to a landmark Supreme Court ruling that U.S. citizens may not be tried by a military tribunal while civilian courts are functioning. United States v. Frank Ryan, et al (1912) convicted 38 participants in a nationwide bombing conspiracy during the birth of union labor. United States v. Board of School Commissioners of the City of Indianapolis (1968-2016) involved the use of busing to desegregate public.  Watch the video.

Indiana Bicentinnial

Take a drive with @CamryforJustice 

It is common for pets to “own” their own Instagram or Twitter feeds. But one judge has taken it a step further to feature his car, a 2004 Toyota Camry. @CamryforJustice belongs to Texas Supreme Court Justice Jeffrey Brown. Brown has been tweeting from the Camry’s perspective since 2014, writing about “his journeys across Texas to meet with lawyers, to speak at legal education seminars or to appear at campaign events.” The car is heralded as  somewhat of a celebrity in the Lone Star State, with people snapping photos and selfies when recognized. "I take @judgejeffbrown everywhere he needs to go in the great state of Texas," the Camry - with more than 212K miles - boasts on Twitter.


Be a super PIO! SHARE our contest with civics leaders, students and teachers

In recognition of Law Day, May 1, 2018, NCSC is sponsoring its fifth annual Civics Education Essay Contest. The question: Why did the Founding Fathers create three branches of government? The prizes: $100, $50 or $25 Amazon gift cards. The national contest is open to 3rd through 12th graders. Teachers are encouraged to incorporate our contest question about the separation of powers into their lesson plans and have students submit their essays (of no more than 100 words) online. Deadline is February 23, 2018. Good luck!


ABA Journal Web 100 honors podcasts, social media feeds


The ABA Journal Web 100 has announced its selections for best online media in 2017. The list features 50 blogs, 25 podcasts on lawyers and legal issues, and 25 Twitter accounts that focus on the law. The list also highlights the latest inductees into the Blawg 100 Hall of Fame, which includes NCSC’s Gavel to Gavel blog.


We welcome suggestions for future content and feedback on current issues.
Please e-mail Deirdre Roesch.