Most of the time when I see the word “bot” I think of Russian trolls influencing the U.S. election. But not this time! USA Today investigative reporter Brad Heath has created an automatic Twitter bot that follows selected U.S. Supreme Court, U.S. Courts of Appeal, and Federal District Court cases of note and posts documents from new docket entries to Twitter.
The bot uses PACER RSS feeds to gather the latest filings from 74 U.S. District Courts and five federal courts of appeals and stores the docket entries in a database. It matches new filings against a preselected list of major cases, scrapes matching documents from PACER, uploads them to a DocumentCloud project and posts the results on Twitter.
You must have a PACER account in order to access the documents – we do! So if you want the latest filing on United States v. AT&T and Time Warner, or any other U.S. court case you’re watching, let us know if we can help. There may be a fee for retrieving documents.
And follow Big Cases on Twitter for up-to-date notification.
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“Enter our protagonist – the “making available right” [MAR] – which effectively identifies the point of upload as the situs of infringement, thus promising to remedy this situation. The uploader is the one who perpetrates infringement and this entity is now deterred from doing this for fear of being sued. […] it matters not whether the work uploaded is ultimately streamed or copied – we have “our man” and we do not need to worry about those downstream parties.”