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More reasons to be given data

September 22, 2008

Re "Don't bar data," editorial, Sept. 17

It is worth adding three points to last week's excellent editorial on our request for California bar data.

First, we have retained two national experts to vet our privacy protocols and ensure that no personal identities can be deduced from the bar's released data.

The bar, in contrast, regularly violates standard privacy rules in its own public reports.

Second, the bar has used its data in the past for studies of law school admissions, a topic that it now claims is verboten.

Third, we seek to make the data available to all scholars, not just those who wish to study the "mismatch" theory. The serious and competitive study of better data is the way knowledge advances.

Richard Sander

Los Angeles

The writer is a professor of law at UCLA.

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