Courthouse News Service is a nationwide news service for lawyers and the news media. Based in Pasadena, California, Courthouse News focuses on civil litigation, from the date of filing through the appellate level. Unlike other internet-based publishers that simply aggregate information prepared by other content providers, Courthouse News publishes its own original news content prepared by its staff of reporters and editors based across the country.
Courthouse News produces a variety of news publications. The homepage of its website, courthousenews.com, is updated daily and features original news reports and commentary about civil litigation and issues impacting the judiciary. These reports are prepared by Courthouse News’ own reporters and editors, and are often accompanied by links to the underlying documents themselves, most often copies of actual civil court filings. This synthesis of information, analysis and original source documents is a relatively recent innovation in news reporting but is certainly not unique to Courthouse News. Freed from the space constraints of the printed page, newspaper websites and other internet-based publishers are increasingly supplementing their original content with links to public records and other documents that are the basis for, and help explain, that content. The website receives an average of nearly one million unique visitors each month. Recent editions of Courthouse News homepage are attached to this summary and provide a flavor for the content provided.
Courthouse News news reporting activities are not limited to its website. As a nationwide news service specializing in civil litigation, Courthouse News core news publications are its new litigation reports. These reports are emailed to subscribers daily and contain coverage of all significant new civil complaints filed in a particular jurisdiction. As with the website, the preparation of these reports involves news reporting activities: Courthouse News reporters are charged with reviewing the flow of new civil litigation, studying each of the complaints themselves, making news judgments as to which new complaints are the most newsworthy, and preparing original summaries of those actions for inclusion in the new litigation reports. Like the website, the new litigation reports often contain links to the underlying complaints that are summarized in the reports. The new litigation reports serve an essential news-delivery function for a specialized but large audience: the lawyers and law firms based across the nation who are subscribers to these reports. In addition, other news organizations are increasingly relying on Courthouse News new litigation reports to help guide their news coverage, putting Courthouse News in a position similar to that of a pool reporter. All told, Courthouse News provides coverage of more than 2,000 courts around the country, spanning all 50 states.
Although its website and emailed reports are by far its most popular news publications, Courthouse News also publishes the Central District Almanac and the Entertainment Law Digest. In addition to its coverage of trial courts, Courthouse News began covering appellate rulings on a comprehensive basis in California in the late 1990s, slowly adding courts as the years went by. Today, Courthouse News covers almost all the appellate courts in the United States. Courthouse News also reports on newly proposed and passed federal laws and regulations. In the past year, Courthouse News began live coverage of arguments in the U.S. Supreme Court and live coverage of Congress, including confirmation hearings for new federal judges. Courthouse News is a member of the Senate Press Gallery.
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