According to the Washington Post, the Justices on the US Supreme Court are big fans of Googling facts not presented to the court in briefs or oral arguments. Although the practice of in-house fact finding is not prohibited by any rules, the practice does raise some questions about how Justices research the issues presented before it and the resources they use to conduct those in-house fact finding missions. Since this is probably a trend that won’t go away anytime soon, may I suggest that while all of the Justices are out until October, that they seriously consider taking Google’s online course called “Power Searching With Google … a short course on becoming a great internet searcher.”
Now, the Justices will need to hurry, because registration ends on July 16th, and you’re already too late to beat the suggestion that “you register before the first class is released on July 10, 2012.” So, hurry!! If you finish the six 50-minute classes, they’ll send you a link to a printable Certificate of Completion that you can hang next to your Law School Diploma!!
Since I’m pretty sure that SCOTUS Justices search like many lawyers, this course may be one of the best ways to spend their summer and be better prepared for all those voters’ rights issues that will probably be landing on their steps this Fall. Perhaps they’ll teach you a few more tricks to finding facts other than simply searching the words ‘Voter’ and ‘Rights’ in the Google text box. In the course description, they state that they will cover:
search techniques and HOW TO USE THEM TO SOLVE REAL, EVERYDAY PROBLEMS!! [emphasis added]
That sounds like exactly what the Court needs!!
In addition, the Justices could also learn how to set up their own Google Groups, Google+ and use video conferencing with Google Hangouts – it would be interesting to see if Justices Scalia, Thomas, and Alito will put Chief Justice Roberts in their “circles” in those groups.
I think this would be a great use of free time for all the Justices while they are vacationing at the ‘Impregnable island Fortresses’ this summer. I’d give the Justices a link to the course, but I’ll go ahead and just let them Google it… since apparently, they have used it to find things much more important than a power searching course.