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Charles B. Sears Law Library SUNY Buffalo Law School

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Knock It Off With The Knockoffs

Posted on: | by Christine Anne George | No Comments


If there is one piece of my wardrobe that I consider a staple, hands down it’s my chucks. If you need to ask what color, clearly you don’t recall my philosophy from the Law Library’s fashion exhibit. Generations have enjoyed the classic sneakers, and they even managed to work their way into pop culture (perhaps you had the eye of the tiger and noticed them on a certain boxer from Philly during an iconic training montage). With such a history, you can image that Converse is none too pleased that there are other companies edging onto its turf and is now looking to KO the knock-offs in court. (See what I did there?)

On Tuesday, Converse filed 22 separate lawsuits that accused 31 companies of trademark infringement.  You may recall some of the intricate footwork required when Christina Louboutin tried to trademark its red sole  or the Beyonce/Jay-Z fail to lock down the name Blue Ivy. Converse claims that its trademarked designs include the black stripe on the mid-soles as well as the “logo-crested heel bumpers.” Converse tweeted out a diagram explaining what “makes a Chuck a Chuck” on October 14.  On top of the 22 lawsuits it filed in the United States District Court in Brooklyn, Converse is also looking overseas since it filed a complaint with the International Trade Commission.

Best of luck, Converse. You’re looking at a Drago of a challenge.

Participation for Professors & Their Pets Exhibit Needed

Posted on: | by Christine Anne George | No Comments

The librarians at Lockwood are currently planning an exhibit and we need your help. The exhibit, “Professors and Their Pets” will coincide with this semester’s Stress Relief Days, held at Lockwood and the Health Sciences Library at the end of the semester. What we would like from you is a photo of your pet, or of you and your pet together, along with a small paragraph about your pet.  We will be putting up an exhibit on December 1st in the lobby of Lockwood showcasing the professorial pets.

Here’s what we need:

  • One higher quality digital photo (300dpi or higher) of you and your pet, or of just your pet
  • A paragraph (maximum 100 words) telling us about your pet

Here’s an example:

  • This is Biff. He came from the Buffalo City Animal Shelter in 2003. Biff enjoys sleeping, staring at birds, chicken liver pâté, and running around the house at top speeds in the middle of the night for no apparent reason. Biff lives with librarian Molly Poremski.

For promotion of the exhibit, we may use your photo on the Library’s social media. If you’d like to opt out of that, please just let me know when you send in your photo.

If you’d like your furry (or not so furry, as the case may be) friend included in Lockwood’s upcoming exhibit, please email the photo and paragraph to Molly Poremski, by November 10th.

New Tax Collection Available Through HeinOnline

Posted on: | by Christine Anne George | No Comments

From HeinOnline:

“The complete archive publication of the Tax Foundation are now available online in HeinOnline. Many of the titles have been long out-of-print, while others are still being published today! More than 980 titles are included, such as: Tax Watch, Facts & Figures on Government Finance, Library Bulletin, IRET Publications, Civic Guides, and much more.”

To find out more, go to HeinOnline now.

Your Digital Footprint Event Now Available Online

Posted on: | by Christine Anne George | No Comments

Digital Footprint

On October 1, the Digital Challenges Conference Series hosted its first event, Your Digital Footprint. During the event—which over 300 students, faculty, and staff from the University attended and local community members attended—national experts discussed the technological, ethical, legal and moral issues related to the “digital footprints” we all unwittingly leave behind. Speakers included: Christina Peters, Chief Privacy Officer for IBM; Marcus Ranum, Chief of Security for Tenable Security; Brian Boetig, Special Agent in Charge of the Buffalo Office of the FBI; Kristen Martin, Sole Principal Investigator on the 3-year NSF grand funded project, “Addressing Privacy Online,” and Assistant Professor at George Washington University; and Tracy Mitrano, Director of IT Policy and Institute or Computer Policy and Law at Cornell University. If you would like to view any of the presentations online, go to

The Discussion on Drones

Posted on: | by Christine Anne George | No Comments
Christopher Rogers, Tara Melish, and Glenn Sulmasy

Christopher Rogers, Tara Melish, and Glenn Sulmasy


On September 25, the Buffalo Human Rights Center and the Federalist Society hosted a fantastic event. The U.S. Drone Policy in the Middle East: The Legal, Moral, and Political Implications panel featured Professor Glenn Sulmasy of the U.S. Coastguard Academy and Christopher Rogers of the Regional Policy Initiative on Afghanistan & Pakistan of the Open Society Foundations with SUNY Law Professor Tara Melish moderating.

Professor Sulmasy, who was speaking in a private capacity, addressed the nearly full room first. His talk (which was formally titled, “Foreign Affairs in Chaos: The Mideast, ISIS, and Drones”) highlighted the two important but very different perspectives that are at play in the debate about drones: what is permissible under foreign law and what is permissible under constitutional law. Mr. Rogers followed and discussed how there needs to be a globalized debate about drones because it is uncertain how drones fit into international law.

Once the speakers finished, Professor Melish opened the floor to questions. By the end of the event it was clear that there were no easy answers, but drone policy is definitely an issue worth discussing.

Law Library hours during Fall Break (10/2-10/6)

Posted on: | by Nancy Babb |

The Law School’s Fall Break runs from Thursday, October 2 through Monday, October 6. There are no Law School classes during this period.
The Law Library will be open during Fall Break on the following schedule:

  Thursday-Friday, 10/2-10/3:   7:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
  Saturday 10/4:   9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
  Sunday 10/5:   12:00 noon – 5:00 p.m.
  Monday 10/6:   7:30 a.m. – 11:00 p.m.

The full schedule of Law Library hours, with links to other University Libraries locations, is at

Devil in the Details

Posted on: | by Christine Anne George |


I admit that, on occasion, when I want something, I have offered up gold stars or my undying affection. (Disclaimer: Of course, anyone who has dealt with me knows that I typically don’t have any gold stars to give out and my undying affection can be swayed. Offers of candy from my Halloween cauldron, however, are totally on the level.) One line I haven’t crossed is offering up is my theoretical firstborn. Although, to be fair, I’ve never been looking to get Wi-Fi in London.

The Cyber Security Research Institute conducted an experiment in London back in June. It set up a Wi-Fi hotspot, and, just to see what would happen, it added a “‘deliberately ridiculous’ term” where the user would “render up their eldest child for the duration for eternity.” Six people agreed to the terms. Lucky for those kids F-Secure, the Finnish security firm funding the experiment, has announced that they don’t plan to enforce that particular clause. The experiment also showed how easy it was to gather user names and passwords and track activity from people who used the hotspot, which is also troubling.

This latest stunt reinforces the number one lesson from Contracts—always read before you sign. I like to believe that a firstborn is worth more than free Wi-Fi. Perhaps not more than Permit A parking on campus, but I digress…

Figuring Out Ferguson Resource Guide

Posted on: | by Christine Anne George |

Ferguson Guide

Last week the Buffalo Criminal Law Center, Buffalo Criminal Law Society, Black Law Students Association, and Latin American Law Students Association hosted the panel, “Figuring Out Ferguson: A Conversation on Race, Law Enforcement Authority, & Self Defense.” Professor Luis E. Chiesa chaired the panel and Professors Guyora Binder, Athena D. Mutua, and Anthony O’Rourke spoke. The Charles B. Sears Law Library created a resource guide for the books and video that were mentioned during the panel, as well as additional materials the speakers recommended for those interested in the topic.

Go to Figuring Out Ferguson Resources

Why Thomas Jefferson is Never the Way to Go

Posted on: | by Christine Anne George |


Can we talk? Perhaps it’s the passing of Joan Rivers that has made it so apparent, but there have been a lot of fashion faux pas going on these days in court. Oh who am I kidding? We’ve definitely been here before as evidenced here and here. Based off of these most recent instances, here is a handy Do and Do Not list for attorney attire.

  • Do Not wear your pajamas to court: York, PA has apparently been having some issues with proper attire and decorum in court. District Judge Ronald J. Haskell Jr. is on the case. Should you find yourself in York, please mind the signage concerning pajamas and undergarments.
  • Do wear socks: Indiana attorney Todd Glickfield doesn’t like to wear socks. Too bad for him that Blackford Circuit Judge Dean A. Young takes a harsher stance than Judge Haskell. Glickfield showed up in Judge Young’s courtroom without socks and would best not do so again. Why? Judge Young issued a court order. Pro Tip: if you hate socks that much, it’s probably better to let down the hem on your pants than challenge a judge to provide “applicable ‘orders or other legal authority’” on the issue.
  • Do Not dress as Thomas Jefferson and think that it will solve your problems: Now this rule has nothing to do with my oft vocalized classification of TJ as my least favorite Founding Father, even though he is the worst. Attorney Ira Dennis Hawver faced the Kansas Supreme Court to answer disciplinary findings that he provided ineffective counsel to a client who was sentenced to death. (A prior disciplinary hearing resulted in the recommendation to disbar Hawver.) How exactly does Jefferson fit into this? Well, Hawver decided to dress up as Jefferson—powdered wig, hose, and all—to remind the court of his constitutional rights in the hope they would be protected.

Seeing as how it is Constitution Day—sidebar: Happy Constitution Day!—it would be remiss if I didn’t point out that when trying to remind a court about anything regarding the Constitution, it’s probably better to strive for a Madison ensemble seeing as how he is not only the Father of the Constitution, but, you know, was actually there during the Convention.

Help Haven House!

Posted on: | by Christine Anne George |

Library View

SUNY Buffalo Law Domestic Violence and International Women’s Rights Clinic is partnering with the Charles B. Sears Law Library to offer much needed supplies to Haven House, a local shelter for survivors of domestic violence.

What we need: Packages of new socks and underwear in all sizes (adult and children) for both men and women

Where can you donate: Donations can be dropped off at:

  • the Law Library (box is to the immediate right when you enter the Law Library)
  • the Clinic Office (room 507 O’Brian)

Thank you in advance for your generosity. Donations will be accepted until October 31.