With the partial government shutdown approaching one month, Marlene and Greg attempt to make some sense of what this means for those of us who rely upon the information produced by the US Government. On this episode, we have an extended talk with Emily Feltren, Director of Government Relations at the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL) to uncover what’s working and what’s shutdown. While the federal courts are still functioning, they are running on borrowed time, and are scheduled to run out of funds on January 25th. The Pew Research Center has listed a number of data sources which are not being updated during the shutdown. The OMB also has a list of agency shuddered at this time, and assume that the libraries are also closed. If you’re hoping to submit a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request… good luck. Agencies my accept them, but they may not have anyone to process them. Basically, it’s a cluster-fudge right now in D.C.

Joel Lytle, Director of Information Security at Jackson Walker, talks with Greg about the issue of .gov sites which are unable to renew their security certificates during the shutdown. It may not be all that bad… for now. However, there are already reports that the shutdown of sites like donotcall.gov and identitytheft.gov are already having some effects on consumers.

Joel’s advice… trust but verify. If you have questions about the website, call your technology security team and have them take a look at it. This is their area of expertise, so reach out to them.

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Information Inspirations:

The law library world lost a legend this month with the passing of Eileen Searls. In addition to being an influencer in the law library world, she is also the aunt of Eve Searls, who along with Jerry David DiCicca, performs the music you hear on The Geek In Review.

It’s been six years since the information world lost Aaron Swartz to suicide. Aaron was an information rebel, who thought no information paid for by citizens should be held behind paywalls. Check out the documentary, The Internet’s Own Boy, to learn more.

Do you have $29 and a grudge? Then something called The Spinner might be for you. A recent Forbes article talks about the dirty world of social media influencing and how individuals are using The Spinner to make people quit their jobs, have sex, and even convince spouses how playing video games is a good thing.

Do you love Pizza? Marlene does! Also, it’s National Pizza Week.

Kudos to recent Florida Attorney, Haley Moss, for passing the bar. That might not sound like something that would warrant congratulations, but when you learn that Moss was diagnosed with autism early in life, and not given much hopes of living a “normal” life, this is amazing news. Not only did she pass… she’s also already employed.

And finally, Marlene covers BOTS and the automation of client-facing, and back-office operations. Check out the Blue Prism forum.

Don’t forget to subscribe, rate, and comment to The Geek in Review on your favorite podcast platform. If you comments, compliments, or suggestions, you can tweet @gebauerm and/or @glambert to reach out.

Thanks to Jerry David DiCicca for his original music.