Maryland Bar Bulletin
Publications : Bar Bulletin : February 2009


Today’s young people are expected to understand the law and make intelligent, law-abiding decisions that affect their lives, but many are not aware of how the law actually impacts their daily life. To inspire youth to think about the personal law-related decisions they make everyday, like running red lights, smoking on school grounds and drinking and driving, MSBA has launched an innovative YouTube “Law in Your Daily Life” video competition and is encouraging young people, and all members of the public, to offer submissions.

Last fall, MSBA President Katherine Kelly Howard unveiled “Law in Your Daily Life,” an entertaining and educational video competition, complete with cash prizes, to reach out to young people and help them better understand the law. “One of our core missions as an Association is to educate the public about the law and increase its understanding of it,” explains Howard. To achieve this goal, MSBA’s President selected YouTube as an excellent way of “reaching out to young people, especially students, and give them the opportunity through this contest to get involved in our democracy and understand our basic citizen rights.”

Thus, MSBA’s Public Awareness Committee unveiled this unique YouTube Competition, which started accepting entries on MSBA’s YouTube website link on January 1, 2009, and produced a public service announcement to promote this exciting contest. MSBA is inviting all Marylanders to produce a short video highlighting their ideas on how the law affects their life and post it on YouTube for a chance to win a cash prize.

Videos should be three minutes or less and creatively capture the essence of the law in the individual’s or group’s daily life. The deadline for entries is March 15, 2009, and the contest criteria, rules and submission details may be found at

All submissions will be judged in three video categories:
• Under 18 individual or group
• 18 and older individual or group
• People’s Choice

A “jury” of bar leaders and judges will serve as the competition judges. The first, second and third-place winners will all be awarded prize money at, respectively:

• Under 18 winner or group
Prize 1: $500
Prize 2: $300
Prize 3: $200

• 18 and Older
Prize 1: $500
Prize 2: $300
Prize 3: $200

• MSBA’s Law Day Choices
Prize 1: $500
Prize 2: $300
Prize 3: $200

Between January 1, 2009, and March 15, 2009, you may upload your video to

The winners will be announced, and the winning videos previewed, at MSBA’s Law Day program. Time is running out as the deadline for submissions if March 15, so MSBA encourages everyone to submit their entries prior to this date.

Law Day

The importance of this message is underscored not only in one of the MSBA President’s top initiatives this year, but in its Law Day program as well. MSBA’s 2009 Law Day program will complement this effort, devoting its entire conference to “Law in Your Daily Life/How the Law Affects You.” On May 13, 2009, MSBA’s Public Awareness Committee, in conjunction with the Citizenship Law-Related Education Program, will present this educational event, which attracts high school students and teachers across the state, at the Sheppard Pratt Conference Center in Towson, Maryland. The Honorable Robert M. Bell, Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals of Maryland, will serve as the keynote speaker.

The Conference is designed to give students and teachers a basic working knowledge of the law so they may attain a better understanding of, and a deeper appreciation for, their legal rights. Young people will have the opportunity to engage in special interest sessions focused on the law and young people’s lives. These sessions, featuring volunteer lawyer and judge speakers, will give teachers and students the opportunity to explore everything from the juvenile and adult justice system, school law, family law and Internet usage to contracts and debts and employment legal issues.

One of the highlights of Law Day will be the premiere of selected YouTube videos, and the participants will the have the opportunity to vote on their favorite. Plus, the contest winners will be honored with their cash prizes. The contest winners will also be honored at MSBA’s Annual Meeting in Ocean City in June.

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Publications : Bar Bulletin: February 2009

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