[cross-posted on LegalResearchPlus]
The headline from the Internet Archive posting reads: “Millions of documents from over 350k federal court cases now freely available.”
The millions of documents are all from PACER by way of the RECAP plugin.
As the posting states:
“RECAP is a Firefox Internet browser extension that allows users of the PACER to get free copies of documents they would normally pay for when the Archive has a copy, and if it is not available to then automatically donate the documents after they purchase them from PACER for future users. Therefore the repository on the Internet Archive grows as people use the PACER system with this plug-in. We are currently getting more than one document a minute and some large holdings are being uploaded. We hope that the government will eventually put all of these documents in an open archive, but until then this repository will grow with use.”
Wow. Growing faster than one document a minute! (Right now: stop what you are doing and check to see if you have the RECAP plugin installed on your machine — every little bit helps.)
To visit this collection and search the content, go to www.archive.org/details/usfederalcourts. There you will be able to browse by date (the other browsing features aren’t operational). You can also do an Advanced Search on the Internet Archive and keyword search through all the available materials by limiting to the Collection Type = usfederalcourts. VERY COOL.
And, might I add: FREE!
I checked with the good folks who created RECAP at Princeton University’s Center for Information Technology Policy, and they said that for now the RECAP/Internet Archive collection of PACER dockets (specifically: just the high-level case metadata) are indexed and can be searched by the likes of Google, but the underlying dockets, documents and briefs are still hidden from the search robots because of privacy concerns.