Did You Know ?: It Is a Federal Crime to Climb Mt. Rushmore

photo by John Carrel

photo by John Carrel

crime a day rushmoreThat’s right. As per our friends at the “A Crime a Day” Twitter feed, 36 C.F.R. 7.77 and 18 U.S.C. 1865 make it a federal crime to climb Mount Rushmore.  You don’t believe me (or us)?  Well, let’s take a look at the law.  36 C.F.R. 7.77 is pretty straight forward.  It states:

Rushmore CFR

18 U.S.C. § 1865(a) addresses the penalties.  It states that

A person that violates any regulation authorized by section 100751(a) of title 54 shall be imprisoned not more than 6 months, fined under this title, or both, and be adjudged to pay all cost of the proceedings.

Moreover, if you “willfully” destroy any structure, vegetation, or seemingly anything else,  you

“shall be imprisoned not less than 15 days nor more than one year, fined under this title but not less than $10 for each monument, statue, marker, guidepost, or other structure, tree, shrub, or plant that is destroyed, defaced, injured, cut, or removed, or both.” 18 U.S.C. § 1865(c) (2012).

Now, you might be wondering what 18 U.S.C. § 1865 means when it refers to “any regulation authorized by section 100751(a) of title 54.”  That statute is the enabling legislation giving the secretary the power to create regulations for the management of the national parks.

Just Don’t Department

Oh No!There are countless approaches to the practice of law that will let you express your creativity and ability.  And then there are the things you just don’t do.

*Don’t comment on someone’s social media picture, even if you think you’re paying a compliment.

*Don’t leave voicemails laced with profanity and name-calling.

*Don’t hang Hitler’s portrait in your courtroom.

*Don’t get indicted for fraud.



Ten Totally Awesome Things Happening in Columbia in September

It’s that time again, the beginning of the month, in which we dispense information about ten fun Columbia happenings for the next month.  Here’s what September has to offer!

  1.  Check out Columbia’s outdoor music series, Rhythm on the River Playing tonight, Sept. 4th, is Deleveled. Free, starting at 6pm at Riverwalk Amphitheatre.  There are also shows on Sept. 18th and Sept. 25th.
  2. Celebrate Shag!  Check out the 2015 Year of the Shag Celebration on Sept. 5th and 6th.  Admission is free, so dance til you drop.
  3. Head out to Cayce on Sunday, Sept. 6th for the SC Food Truck Wars Festival and enjoy delicious eats from food trucks in the area.  $10, from 11am-6pm.
  4. Check out the Town Theatre’s production of Singin’ in the Rain!  Playing from Sept. 11 through Oct. 4th, it’s only $20 a ticket for students.
  5. Heard of Diner en Blanc, the dining events that have popped up around the globe? Head out to the Dinner in White at the Columbia Museum of Art on Sunday, September 13th for a unique event, with Chef Ryan Whittaker and 116 Espresso and Wine Bar catering.  All proceeds of the event go towards supporting the museum’s educational mission. ($120, $100 for museum members, group discounts offered.)
  6. If that’s too pricey a ticket, try the Columbia Classical Ballet Company’s Cabaret Night Fundraiser.  $45/ticket, for a fun night with hors d’oeuvres and a silent auction.
  7. Feeling jazzy?  Check out Joe Gransden at CMA Jazz on Main on Sept. 18th at 7pm, kicking off the third season of the popular concert series. Only $5 for students!
  8. Take your family out to the Fall Festival and Pickin’ Party at the SC State Museum on September 19th from 10am-5pm.  Enjoy S.C. barbecue and other food, craft beer, live bluegrass music, artist demos, and much more.  Get in for the general price of museum admission, and then buy your own food and drinks.
  9. Check out our Gamecocks in action at Williams-Bryce Stadium on Sept. 26th v. UCF.  Get tickets here.
  10. Head over to McCutcheon House’s Wine and Beverage Institute for “Our Favorite for the Fall on Sept. 29th.  They’ll introduce you to great fall wines, and provide a tasty dinner to go with them.  $50/person.

Today In History: Frederick Douglass Escapes Slavery

Frederick DouglassOn September 3, 1838, Frederick Douglass, American abolitionist, social reformer, and statesman, escaped from slavery.  Wearing a sailor’s uniform (and carrying seaman’s protection documents) provided by a friend, he embarked on a perilous journey from Baltimore to Philadelphia.  Forty years later, he wrote a riveting account of his escape; you can read it here.

Labor Day Weekend Library Hours

The Law Library will be open the following hours over the Labor Day weekend:

Friday, September 4:  7:00am-7:00pm
Saturday, September 5:  10:00am-6;00pmSunday, September 6:  1:00pm-9:00pm
Monday, September 7:  1:00pm-9:00pm

The Reference Desk will not be staffed on Monday, but the Circulation Desk will be staffed and happy to answer questions.

Enjoy the long weekend!

Spotify: How It Works, and How It’s Legal.

by Scott Beale

by Scott Beale

I have a normal routine when I get to work.  I come in, change out of my walking clothes, drink some coffee, turn on the radio, and then I can start preparing for the day.   Usually, I stream either our local NPR news station or something on Spotify.

In case you were interested, today I’m listening to Mariachi El Bronx.  I’d highly recommend, both for the music and the back story.

To me, Spotify is a strange animal.  For those of us around for the beginning of internet music, namely Spotify’s completely illegal cousins Napster and Limewire, and illegal torrent sites like Piratebay, completely legal internet streaming sites seem strange.  So, I decided it might be fun to look into exactly how these free streaming sites work.

First, Spotify is legal because it pays artists for their music.  There is no thievery going on here! Record labels, and occasionally independent artists, provide Spotify with copies of their music.  Spotify then streams the music to users via their website, downloadable platform, or application.  Then, artists receive money based on the number of times users play their songs.  How much money you ask?  Well, that’s the tricky part.

Spotify’s “artists” page says they pay different rates based on country of the user, type of user listening (free vs. subscription), subscription pricing, exchange rates, and the artists’ individual royalty rates.  Spotify states that they end up paying between $0.006 and $0.0084 to rights holders (artists).  While this might seem like a small amount of money, Spotify recently reported that a real-life artist was earning $425,000 per month in royalties for a “global hit album.”   This doesn’t give a lot of hope to smaller acts, but it does show that someone is making a lot of money from the service.

spotifyAnd where does all this money come from?  The answer is advertising and subscriptions.  Spotify’s free service uses ads to pay artists for music, while its subscription service charges users to listen without ads.  It then passes this money on to artists and stockholders alike.  In its free form, Spotify runs on a similar model to Google products like Gmail and Google Drive, which provide free services with advertisements.

So what’s the difference between Spotify and the illegal alternatives of my youth?  Not much, honestly.  Spotify is reliable and carries almost any music you could ask for.  Admittedly, some superstars like Taylor Swift and Prince have taken their music off the site.  However, generally speaking, the site works well and allows users to listen to almost anything they want without the threat of attorney letters and lawsuits.

Cocky’s Guide to the Law Library & IT

Trying to remember something that you learned during orientation about the library or IT?  We’ve compiled a guide with all the relevant information you heard: Cocky’s Guide to the Law Library & IT!

cockysguideLearn how to:

  • Reserve a study room
  • Order a book we don’t own through interlibrary loan
  • Register for the electronic research databases (Westlaw, Lexis, Bloomberg)
  • Get more printing credits if you run out of your $100 allotment, and
  • much more!

Of course, you can also email the Reference Desk at lawref@law.sc.edu, call the desk at 803-7777-5902, or stop by with questions on weekdays between 8:30am and 5:00pm!


Welcome 1Ls

Today the University of South Carolina welcomes its new class of first year law students.  The students begin a three day orientation period, where they will receive introductory sessions on law school classes, professionalism, academic support, and even a tour of the library.  Obviously, the tour of the library will be the best part.

All of us here at the Coleman Karesh Law Library would like to wish our newest students the best of luck.  For those of us who teach, we look forward to meeting you in class on Friday.  Finally, as always, if you need help, information, reassurance, a high-five, or really anything at all, please don’t hesitate to ask.

US Embassy Opens in Havana

The United States reopened its Cuban embassy today; it had been closed for over 54 years.  This occasion marks a huge step in the international relations between the two countries.  John Kerry, the first Secretary of State to visit Cuba in 70 years, presided over the ceremony, calling the flag raising at the embassy a “historic moment,” but warning that the U.S. wouldn’t stop pressing for democratic change in Cuba.

In a poetic moment, the three men who took the flag down 54 years ago as young marines handed the flag over to be hoisted once more.

A New Look for HeinOnline

Most students are familiar with HeinOnline after their first year Legal Research, Analysis & Writing course as a place to find PDFs of law review articles, as well as many other resources.  After releasing its new interface this week, it’s looking a little different than you’re used to, but it still has all the same great content.

HeinThe new homepage highlights all the various libraries within Hein and allows researchers to limit the libraries by the type of materials they’re looking for.

To read up on other HeinOnline digital collections, see our coverage of these other helpful resources: Congress and the CourtsHistory of Supreme Court NominationsSession Laws Library/State Statutes: A Historical ArchiveU.S. International Trade LibraryChildren’s Law Journal,  Intellectual Property Law Collection,  State Attorney General Reports and OpinionsAmerican Indian Law CollectionWorld Constitutions IllustratedTaxation and Economic Reform in America, Parts I and IIU.S. Presidential LibraryEnglish ReportsWorld Trials LibraryU.S. Supreme Court LibraryFederal Register LibraryForeign & International Law Resources DatabaseNational Moot Court CompetitionAmerican Law Institute LibraryHistory of Bankruptcy:  Taxation & Economic Reform in America Part IIIStatutes of the RealmLegal Classics LibraryHistory of International LawU.S. Federal Legislative History LibraryPentagon PapersTreaties and Agreements LibraryCanada Supreme Court Reports/Revised Statutes of CanadaU.S. Congressional DocumentsEuropean Centre for Minority IssuesForeign Relations of the United States (FRUS)U.S. Federal Agency Documents, Decisions, & AppealsLaw Journal LibrarySelden Society Publications and The History of Early English LawSubject Compilations of State LawsEarly American Case LawSpinelli’s Law Library Reference ShelfHarvard Journal of Law & TechnologyPhilip C. Jessup LibraryNational Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State LawsHarvard Research in International Law International Journal of the Jurisprudence of the FamilyAssociation of American Law Libraries (AALL)Association of American Law Schools (AALS)United States CodeManual of Patent Examining ProcedureBar JournalsCode of Federal Regulations,United Nations Law CollectionCataloging Online, and Parker School of Foreign and Comparative Law Publications.