Custom Search Engines

If you’re like me, you regularly do research on the Internet, ranging from in-depth research on Lexis or Westlaw, to pulling statutes from Virginia’s Legislative Information System (LIS) or Virginia Decoded, to searching other online databases and sites. Modern web browsers allow users to create custom “search engines” (or special bookmarks that function like search engines) that can be used to quickly perform searches on specific websites. Once configured, you can search the specific website by typing the selected keyword into the browser’s address bar, followed by a space, and then the search term. For example, I have configured a custom search engine for the Virginia LIS website so that I can type va 13.1-782 into my browser’s address bar to immediately retrieve that statute (Virginia Code § 13.1-782).

Examples

Here are some examples that you might find useful. (Directions to setup these examples or to create your own custom search engines are provided below.)

  • LIS: Virginia Code
    • Description: This will retrieve the specified statute from Virginia’s Legislative Information System (LIS) website. You can access the Table of Contents by typing TOC instead of a statute number.
    • Keyword: va
    • URL: http://lis.virginia.gov/cgi-bin/legp604.exe?000+cod+%s
  • LIS: Virginia Code (beta)
    • Description: This will retrieve the specified statute from the new beta version of Virginia’s Legislative Information System (LIS) website. You can access the Table of Contents by typing TOC instead of a statute number.
    • Keyword: vabeta
    • URL: http://law.lis.virginia.gov/vacode/%s/
  • Virginia Decoded (VaCode.org)
    • Description: This will retrieve the specified statute from the Virginia Decoded website. To learn more about the Virginia Decoded website, see Vaden Warren’s Tech Tip.
    • Keyword: vacode
    • URL: http://vacode.org/%s/
  • LIS: Virginia Administrative Code
    • Description: This will retrieve the specified section of the Virginia Administrative Code from Virginia’s Legislative Information System (LIS) website. You can access the Table of Contents by typing TOC instead of a section number.
    • Keyword: vac
    • URL: http://lis.virginia.gov/cgi-bin/legp604.exe?000+reg+%s
  • Lexis VA Code
    • Description: This will retrieve the specified statute from Lexis.
    • Keyword: valn
    • URL: http://www.lexis.com/research/xlink?searchtype=get&search=va%20stat%20%s
  • Lexis Citation Search
    • Description: This will perform a search in Lexis using the specified search string.
    • Keyword: ln
    • URL: http://www.lexis.com/research/xlink?searchtype=get&search=%s
  • Wayback Machine (Internet Archive)
    • Description: This will search the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine for the specified website. For example, use: archive vba.org to see historic versions of The Virginia Bar Association’s website.
    • Keyword: archive
    • URL: https://web.archive.org/web/*/%s
  • TSDR – Serial No. Search
    • Description: This will retrieve the specified trademark application (by serial number) from the USPTO database.
    • Keyword: tsdr
    • URL: http://tsdr.uspto.gov/#caseNumber=%s&caseType=SERIAL_NO&searchType=statusSearch
  • Google Scholar
    • Description: This will perform a search in Google Scholar for the specified search string.
    • Keyword: scholar
    • URL: http://scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=en&q=%s

How to Install Custom Search Engines

To create or install a custom search engine, you will need to supply three pieces of information: (1) a name for the search engine (this can be whatever you want), (2) a keyword or shortcut to reference the search engine (this should be a single, easy to remember word or abbreviation), and (3) the URL used to perform the search.

Directions for Google Chrome

To install a custom search engine in the Google Chrome web browser:

  1. Click on the menu button and select Settings
    Custom Search Engines - Chrome Screenshot 1
  2. Then click Manage search engines…
    Custom Search Engines - Chrome Screenshot 2
  3. When the following dialog appears, scroll to the bottom:
    Custom Search Engines - Chrome Screenshot 3
  4. Enter the search engine name, keyword, and URL into the fields shown below and click Done
    Custom Search Engines - Chrome Screenshot 4

To use the newly created custom search engine:

  1. Place your cursor in the address bar by clicking with your mouse or pressing [Ctrl] + [L]
  2. Type the keyword selected for the search engine followed by a space
    Custom Search Engines - Chrome Screenshot 5
  3. Then type your search terms and press [Enter]

Directions for Mozilla Firefox

To install a custom search engine in the Mozilla Firefox web browser:

  1. Click on the bookmark button and select Show All Bookmarks
    Custom Search Engines - Firefox Screenshot 1
  2. When the Library window opens, right click on Bookmarks Menu and select New Bookmark…
    Custom Search Engines - Firefox Screenshot 2
  3. Type the name for your custom search bookmark, enter the URL into the Location field, and type your desired keyword into the Keyword field:
    Custom Search Engines - Firefox Screenshot 3
  4. Then click Add
    Custom Search Engines - Firefox Screenshot 4
  5. Then close the Library window

To use the newly created custom search engine:

  1. Place your cursor in the address bar by clicking with your mouse or pressing [Ctrl] + [L]
  2. Type the keyword selected for the search engine followed by a space
    Custom Search Engines - Firefox Screenshot 5
  3. Then type your search terms and press [Enter]

Creating Your Own Custom Search Engines

When using a custom search engine, the text that you type into the address bar will replace the %s placeholder in the search URL. For example, the URL used to create the Virginia LIS custom search engine mentioned above is: http://lis.virginia.gov/cgi-bin/legp604.exe?000+cod+%s, and when I type va 13.1-782 in the address bar, my custom search engine converts that to: http://lis.virginia.gov/cgi-bin/legp604.exe?000+cod+13.1-782. Thus, you can often reverse engineer the appropriate custom search URL by performing a search on a website, and then copying that URL and replacing your search string with %s.

An earlier version of this article was published on October 8, 2014 by The Virginia Bar Association in the VBA Law Practice Management Division’s Tech Tips Forum at: http://www.vba.org/forums/permalink.asp?id=1016620.

Internet Radio

Internet Radio: The Case for a Technology Neutral Royalty Standard, 95 Va. L. Rev. 2129 (Cover)My paper, Internet Radio: The Case for a Technology Neutral Royalty Standard, was published in the December 2009 issue of the Virginia Law Review. The body of the paper is available at: http://www.virginialawreview.org/volumes/content/internet-radio-case-technology-neutral-royalty-standard and the Appendix (Summary of Royalty Rates) is available here.

Note: The pagination of the PDF version available above does not precisely match the printed version. A copy of the paper is also available as a scanned PDF.

Internet Radio: The Case for a Technology Neutral Royalty Standard

Citation: Andrew Stockment, Note, Internet Radio: The Case for a Technology Neutral Royalty Standard, 95 Va. L. Rev. 2129 (2009).

Abstract

Since its debut in the mid-1990s, internet radio (or “webcasting”) has grown rapidly and now attracts more than 69 million listeners very month—more than a quarter of all U.S. internet users. Internet radio listeners can select virtually any conceivable genre of music and listen to their selection anywhere they have an internet connection.

All digital radio providers—internet radio, digital cable radio, and satellite radio—must pay a royalty for the performance of the sound recording. This royalty is imposed by § 114 and § 112 of the Copyright Act and the rate is determined by the Copyright Royalty Board (CRB). In 2007, the CRB issued a rate determination that threatens to shut down internet radio. The royalties required by the decision would demand internet radio operators to pay rates approaching or even exceeding 100% of revenue. Meanwhile, for the sound recording performance royalties for the other forms of digital radio—cable radio and satellite radio—the CRB adopted rates of 6-15% of revenue. Thus, the current copyright regime has a strong bias in favor of certain technologies providing digital radio (cable radio and satellite radio) and against another (internet radio), resulting in disproportionately high royalties for internet radio. While a variety of agreements between webcasters and SoundExchange adopted under the Webcaster Settlement Acts of 2008 and 2009 have delayed the onset of industry crushing royalties, the threat continues to hang over internet radio’s future.

In this paper, I provide an overview of internet radio and the current copyright royalty regime, and I present and critique the recording industry’s argument that internet radio is a threat. I then analyze the economic impact of current royalty rates on internet radio and contrast it with the impact of the royalties for the other forms of digital radio. After showing the devastating impact of the current royalty rates, I analyze the source of the royalty rate inequities. I demonstrate that the disparate treatment of the different forms of digital radio has resulted from the statutory imposition of two standards for determining digital radio royalties: “§ 801(b)(1)” vs. “willing buyer, willing seller.” I then make constitutional and policy arguments for having a single, technology neutral standard for determining the royalties for digital radio. I conclude by demonstrating that the standard that should be adopted is the § 801(b)(1) standard, and I propose amendments to the Copyright Act to effectuate the change. Amending the Copyright Act to apply a consistent, technology neutral standard would ensure that all forms of digital radio continue to thrive and would ensure that the music keeps playing for the 69 million Americans who tune in to internet radio every month.

Appendix

  • Appendix: Summary of Royalty Rates
    The electronic version of this article that is available on the Virginia Law Review website omits the appendix, which appears as pages 2173-2179 in the published article. The appendix is available here.

Supplement

Additional Resources [tentative]

  • History of Internet Radio
    This material had to be cut from the published version of my paper due to space constraints. I plan to revise and post this material online.
  • History of the Royalty Rate Dispute
    Portions of this material had to be cut from the published version of my paper due to space constraints. I plan to revise and post this material online.
  • Empirical Research of Internet Radio Costs & Royalty Payments
    The majority of this material was cut from the published version of my paper due to space constraints. I might post additional details about my empirical research.
  • Detailed Summary of All Internet Radio Royalty Rates
    Some of the details were cut from the published version of my paper due to space constraints. I plan to post this material online.
  • Interactive Royalty Calculator
    The vision for this is an interactive tool that will enable the user to enter the relevant data points (e.g., monthly ATH, revenue, expenses) and the application will display the projected royalty amounts under each of the various royalty rates for internet radio. I do not anticipate developing this tool, but I would be happy to collaborate with anyone interested in creating it.