n Mousaion - Current awareness services (CAS) available via the World Wide Web (WWW) in respect of legal information




In a globalised world where current awareness services (CAS) are increasingly being made available on the World Wide Web (WWW), a myriad of electronic services exists to keep users up to date with the latest developments in the legal field. The objective of this article is to gain an understanding of the potential value of such services for users of legal information. To accomplish this, attention will be given to the nature, advantages and disadvantages of CAS, as well as to the information background and needs of legal users as currently reported in the subject literature. Since the users of legal information constitute a unique group of users with a very specific vocabulary and subject field, their information needs are different from those of other groups and will be addressed specifically. Examples of the kind of services available to this specific group, which services range from newsletters and e-mail alerts to listservs, blogs and directories, will be given. Taking all of the above into consideration, the value of CAS for users of legal information will be highlighted, with suggestions being made as to further research that be conducted concerning this user group's needs for CAS.


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