WNYC’s Judge Your Judges will provide voters with location-specific information in judicial elections.

In a post yesterday, In Litigation and Legal Research, Judge Analytics is the New BlackI wrote about three websites that provide data and analytics about judges. Thanks to sharp-eyed readers, I have learned of three other sites with similar missions.

Two of the sites were just this week awarded start-up funding through the Knight News Challenge. Both are focused on using data to provide greater transparency about judges and judicial elections. Each received $35,000. They are:

Judge Your Judges, a project of public radio station WNYC in New York that will focus on enabling voters to make more knowledgeable decisions about New York judicial elections. The tool will be location specific, meaning that users will enter an address to see the judicial elections they will be voting in and then be provided with key information, insights and context about candidates, their views and the court system.

OpenJudiciary.org, a project of the Free Law Project based in Berkeley. The project aims to make judicial elections more transparent for journalists and researchers by creating online profiles of judges that show campaign contributions, judicial opinions and biographies.

In a blog post about the grant, the Free Law Project explains:

Free Law Project’s CourtListener platform already contains more than 2.6 million court opinions. By combining this data with campaign finance data and other information about judges, OpenJudiciary.org will provide a means of acquiring the necessary information that makes civic engagement and informed voting possible.

According to its entry, OpenJudiciary.org would cover three states in its first year and then “many more” by its third year.

The third site is the Judge Information Center operated by Trac Reports. Some of the information on this site is free and some requires a subscription that costs $125 a month. It includes the following types of information:

  • Criminal Cases in District Court. Caseload information on each federal district judge who sentenced at least 50 individuals during the five-year period ending December 2014.
  • Civil Cases in District Court. Caseload information on each federal district judge for the most recent 12 month period ending December 2014.
  • Immigration Court. Asylum denial rates by individual Immigration Judges who have decided at least 100 asylum cases over a six-year coverage period.
  • Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. Sentencing reports for judges serving on the FISA Court, updated through the end of FY 2012. For each judge, you may select a report on median or average prison sentences.
  • Special Reports. Various reports covering topics such as judicial workloads, sentencing patterns and case backlogs.
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Bob is a lawyer, veteran legal journalist, and award-winning blogger and podcaster. In 2011, he was named to the inaugural Fastcase 50, honoring “the law’s smartest, most courageous innovators, techies, visionaries and leaders.” Earlier in his career, he was editor-in-chief of several legal publications, including The National Law Journal, and editorial director of ALM’s Litigation Services Division.