Vol. 77, No. 8, August
Copyright and Publishing Law, Third
By Ellen M. Kozak (New York, NY: Henry Holt & Co.,
2004). 141 pgs. $13.
Reviewed by Prof. Ramon A. Klitzke
Every Writer's Guide to Copyright and Publishing Law should
be on the desk of every writer who has any thought of publishing.
Attorneys interested in publishing law also should read the guide.
When I reviewed the first edition of the guide (63 Wis. Law. 26
(Sept. 1990)) and the second (71 Wis. Law 28 (Feb. 1998)), I pointed out
that the author's extensive experience in educating lawyers and
counseling authors clearly qualifies her to write this book. A published
writer myself, I've met many authors who relied heavily on the earlier
editions of this guide.
The guide is directed to general principles of U.S. law related to
literary works. The 24 chapters include ones on the legal system,
exploiting copyrights, copyright notice, registration and related areas
of law, to mention only a few of the necessary tools for the
author-publisher. The guide will be a continuing resource for authors
and attorneys alike.
Since the 1997 edition, copyright law has progressed immeasurably
because of technological and global market changes. The Digital
Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) of 1998, the Sonny Bono Copyright Term
Extension Act of 1998, and the Technology, Education and Copyright
Harmonization Act of 2002 are just some of the laws Congress has
With the passage of the 1998 Bono Act, the "life-plus-50-years"
copyright duration became "life-plus-70-years," except for anonymous and
pseudonymous works and works made for hire. Those are protected for 120
years from creation or 95 years from first publication, whichever is
Since publication of the second edition, the U.S. Supreme Court
decided New York Times Co. v. Jonathan Tasini (2001). The Court
held that the Times, absent permission, had no right to sell
articles bought from freelancers to online services. Once an article
appears online, it loses its resale value. But now many larger papers
require such authorization as part of the purchase of the article.
The third edition of the guide is much easier on the eyes than was
the second. The page size is larger and the type font is sharper. A
complete index is included.
I strongly recommend the new edition of Every Writer's Guide to
Copyright and Publishing Law to any lawyer who might face a
question from an author.
Taking and Defending Depositions
By Stuart M. Israel (Philadelphia, PA: ALI-ABA,
2004). 344 pgs. $89. Order, (800) 253-6397.
Reviewed by Dustin T. Woehl
This book purports to be a handy, easy-to-read guide for litigators
at all levels of practice. It is definitely easy and even fun to read.
The author writes with wit and humor, referencing Sergeant Joe Friday,
Rambo, Bill Clinton, Ray Charles, Gary Cooper, Sherlock Holmes, the
Bible, and Bentham. The guide also contains illustrative and often
humorous deposition transcripts. The entertainment, however, bloats the
writing, leaving it rather loose. I sometimes wished the book would make
its point and move on. Also, the discussion is keyed to the Federal
Rules of Civil Procedure, requiring the Wisconsin reader to translate
these to the Wisconsin rules for citation in depositions or in
I first judge this book by its cover, which is physically too firm.
This makes it harder to keep open to read, take notes in, or photocopy.
My copy actually split in two, resulting in loose pages. The book is
organized in four parts. The first and broadest section covers
deposition uses, alternatives, advantages, and drawbacks. This part
should stimulate even seasoned litigators to think creatively about
using depositions in new ways. Part two discusses deposition
fundamentals, rules, principles, mechanics, strategies, practices, and
planning. However, it merely foreshadows the discussion in part four and
could be condensed or eliminated. Part three discusses coaching
deponents. It includes 13 deposition fundamentals and a select 162
essential rules for deponents. Part four could stand alone. It includes
helpful "nuts and bolts" information on taking and defending
depositions, and includes topics such as deposition outlines, transcript
awareness, formulating questions, and dealing with objections. The
checklists in this section will be helpful in preparing to take and
The book also contains several forms, including notices of
deposition, a motion to compel a deponent to answer questions, and a
motion to limit the deposition scope. These should be helpful for anyone
preparing these documents for the first time. The author also includes
the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure that address depositions. This
could help but is probably unnecessary. The actual text of the rules
isn't necessary to understand the related discussions in the book. A
litigator relying on the rules for any other purpose should own or
consult a current official version.
Overall, Taking and Defending Depositions is an
entertaining, thought-provoking, and useful deposition guide. However,
its relaxed and enjoyable writing, too-firm cover, and reliance on the
federal rules rather than the Wisconsin rules make it less handy for one
who litigates in Wisconsin state courts than it otherwise could be.
Uneasy Alchemy: Citizens and Experts in
Louisiana's Chemical Corridor Disputes
By Barbara L. Allen (Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press,
2004). 224 pgs. $22. Order, (800) 405-1619
Reviewed by Peter A. Tomasi
The chemical corridor between Baton Rouge and New Orleans is home to
more than 120 chemical plants, and high rates of cancer and respiratory
illness in the area have earned it the moniker "Cancer Alley." The
area's reputation as an ideal place to site chemical plants because of
its marginalized population and friendly government helped spawn the
environmental justice movement. In Uneasy Alchemy: Citizens and
Experts in Louisiana's Chemical Corridor, Barbara Allen, a
"participant-activist" in environmental disputes, examines the way that
citizen activists and experts of various stripes interact in disputes
over the siting of those large-scale industrial facilities in the
corridor. Using ethnographic analysis of interviews with activists,
citizens, government agency actors, and corporate experts, Allen
analyzes the mixed results of environmental justice challenges and the
factors leading to successful environmental justice challenges.
Allen uses the battle to site a $700 million plastics plant outside
of Geismar, La., as the foundation to a theory of successful citizen
organization and action. Local residents, assisted by outside experts
and the Tulane Environmental Law Clinic, challenged the permitting
decision for the proposed plant. The mix of local citizens temporarily
allied with expert-activists ultimately forced the company to build a
substantially smaller facility on a different site, even though Tulane
Environmental Law Clinic was stripped of most of its capacity to
represent environmental groups by the Louisiana Supreme Court during the
tail end of the permitting challenge.
Although Allen spends a significant amount of time developing a
theory of citizen action, the underlying story of the Louisiana chemical
corridor is the most compelling portion of the book. The unpredictable
mix of race, class, historic business-friendly policies, and endemic
poverty interact in different and sometimes surprising ways. Allen is at
her best when detailing the results of her ethnographic research and
contrasting the different views of all the individual players on the
environmental scene in Louisiana, such as the views of local residents
who distrust large corporations, against the views of other residents
and regulators who questioned the motives and commitment of national
environmental organizations involved in the challenge.
To Review a Book...
The following books are available for review. Please request the book
and writing guidelines from Karlé Lester at the State Bar of
Wisconsin, P.O. Box 7158, Madison, WI 53707-7158, (608) 250-6127, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Publications and videos available for review
- ERISA: The Law and the Code, 2004 Edition,
edited by Sharon F. Fountain & Michael G. Kushner (Washington,
DC: Bureau of National Affairs, 2004). 832 pgs.
- Marketplace Masters: How Professional Service Firms Compete
to Win, by Suzanne C. Lowe (Westport, CT: Greenwood
Publishing Group, 2004). 252 pgs.
- Media Relations Handbook, by Brad Fitch
(Alexandria, VA: TheCapitol.Net, 2004). 368 pgs.
- Women-at-Law: Lessons Learned Along the Pathways to
Success, by Phyllis Horn Epstein (Chicago, IL: ABA Law
Practice Management Section, 2004). 376 pgs.