Publication Guidelines

Publishing in Online Journals.
(Publication Ethics and Publication Malpractice Statement)

With these guidelines Editions Weblaw would  like to achieve a consistent formal structure for the published online journals. These guidelines apply, unless specified otherwise, for the online journals Jusletter, Jusletter IT – The Journal of  IT and Law, the Swiss Judges' Journal «Justice - Justiz - Giustizia» and dRSK (digital jurisdiction commentary). The formal unification helps to maintain a smooth process for you as an author as well as for us.

The document at hand is structured in the following way: First, you will gain an insight into the basic workflow of our online journals, from submitting the manuscript up until the publication. You will then be introduced to the formatting and citation rules. Afterwards, the particularities of the individual online journals are constituted. Additionally, you will come to know about your rights and obligations as an author of one of the aforementioned online journals.
 
A Word style sheet that applies to all of our online journals can be found here.
 
For the journal ASA, we’d like to refer you to the separate Publication guidelines ASA

1. Procedure of Publishing in Editions Weblaw – Online Journals (peer-review process).

All prospective articles for online journals of Editions Weblaw are proofread and evaluated by editorial staff / editors. The editorial staff / editors will ultimately decide whether and in which form an article can be published.

We are proud to be able to say that our journal’s reviewers are esteemed experts from their respective fields.

First Formal Control.
The head of the respective online journal, upon receiving the manuscript, subjects it to a short first formal control and then forwards it to the corresponding editorial staff / editors. After approximately two to four  weeks you will receive a report via e-mail, stating whether or not and when exactly your article will be published. If you do not receive any  feedback within this time period, it does not automatically mean that your article has been declined. Despite all our efforts to be precise, delays can still occur. In that case, please remind us of the delinquency.

Professional Monitoring by the Editorial Staff.
After the professional monitoring has been carried out, there are multiple possibilities: 

  1. Your article has been accepted for publication.
    In that case, the head of the respective online journalwill brief you via e-mail and convey the date of publication.
  2. Your article has been accepted for publication under the condition of carrying out content-related corrections.
    In that case, the head of the respective online journalwill forward the corrections proposed by the editorial staff / editors to you, asking you to revise the article. At the same time, a period of time for the revision will be set. The adapted manuscript will be reviewed one more time by the editorial staff / editors. After that, only cases a. or c. may occur; a third professional control is not intended.
  3. Your article has been declined.
    If your article has been rejected, it is an authoritative and irrevocable decision, a revision of the text is not intended. Missing topicality or scientific importance, severe legal inadequacies in the argumentation, missing logical structure and serious linguistic deficiencies can all be, amongst others, reasons for refusal. Representing a different view (from doctrine or practice) will not be considered reason for refusal by our objective editorial staff / editors, unless other – e.g. aforementioned – mistakes were made.


Monitoring by the Author.

After receiving the «Good for Publication» by the editorial staff / editors, your article will be imported into our system internally. Afterwards, you will receive a link to your article in order to examine it. You may then send us possible change requirements and corrections, preferably via e-mail (or via fax). For this purpose, you can either print out the document and send us back a scan with handwritten requests or copy the text into a Word document and edit it in the mark-up mode. Please do not send us your original document back where you have, as the case may be, made modifications directly. On the one hand you might overlook changes already made from our side; on the other hand, we will have to re-import the text if we are not able to retrace your corrections.

Proofreading by Editions Weblaw.
Editions Weblaw will proofread your article reasonably, meaning that grammatical and orthographic errors as well as the form of citation will be improved upon and adjusted. These corrections will not be communicated to the author. If further enhancements are proposed (adaption of sentence structure, content-related amendments) they will bediscussed with the author.

«Good for Publication» by the Author.
After in-house and author’s corrections are carried out, the author will receive a «Good for Publication» which  he/she is usually obliged to grant within one to three days.

After Publication: Correcting and Retracting.
Minor content-related mistakes, especially citations, are corrected within the respective article. Such a correction is indicated by brackets containing the date the correction was made, e.g. [Version of 1 January 2015].

Editorial staff / editors are reviewing articles with the necessary diligence and to the best of their abilities. The authors assure and avouch that they are entitled to the sole copyright to their work and that as of now they have not made any provisions that would oppose the transfer of rights of these guidelines (see below: 8. Copyright / Transfer of Rights / Right of Access). Nonetheless, if libels or copyright infringements are not caught during the review process and surface only after publication, an article or, if possible, only the affected parts (e.g. a copyrighted picture) may be retracted.

 

2. Design of your text – Online Journals.

Format and Formatting.
Please submit your text as a PC-compatible Microsoft Word-File without macros or field functions. Deactivate the automatic hyphenation and remove it from your text. For possible footnotes, please use the footnote function provided by Word. Please use our style sheet (download here).

Language.
Editions Weblaw’s online journals are generally published in the languages German and French; Jusletter IT is published in German and English. Articles written in Italian will be accepted, but it has to be noted that content monitoring can only take place if the editorial staff has knowledge of the language in which the article is submitted in. If this is not the case Editions Weblaw will not proofread the article. Publications in English language will undergo only a limited proofreading process, except for Jusletter IT where English language submission are reviewed just like any other normal submission.
 
Structure and Length.
Generally there are no specifications regarding the length of the texts unless otherwise specified with the editorial staff / editors. In dRSK, the statements should not exceed 10‘000 characters (incl. blanks). In Jusletter, Jusletter IT and the Swiss Judges' Journal «Justice - Justiz - Giustizia», the articles will be categorized differently depending on their length(cf. below, specifics of the individual online journals). 

  • Title (obligatory; about 60 characters incl. blanks; no footnote references)
  • Subtitle (optional; no footnote references)
  • Name of the author (obligatory, no mentioning of academic or professional titles; no footnote references)
  • Abstract (obligatory; a short summary of the text, about 2–5 sentences; max. 650 characters incl. blanks. Due to technical reasons, the abstract must not include footnotes or hyperlinks. Ideally, you compose the abstract in both publication languages of the online journal)
  • Table of contents (will be automatically generated by Editions Weblaw; exception: dRSK does not have a table of contents)
  • Text (obligatory; paragraph numbers will be assigned by Editions Weblaw)
  • Personal description (obligatory; name including complete academic title and current professional activity / activities as well as further information [additional title, other employments et cetera]. Please declare these at the end of the text, not in a footnote)
  • Relevant: If your text is a question of a legal opinion for a specific field of interest or if you have represented a party in the course of the legal issue dealt with or have acted in any other personal interests, this has to be revealed to the readers unconditionally in the personal description. Particular remarks (e.g. acknowledgements) are likewise stated in the personal description and not in a footnote.
  • Footnotes (optional; references to indications of sources within the text are generally not intended, exception is dRSK, where footnotes are not provided and all references have to be stated within the text)

We would like to abstain from utilizing bibliographies in our online journals. Therefore the cited works are to be quoted in the footnotes consecutively.

Lists of abbreviations will not be displayed.

Citation.
Whenever a multi-page document is cited, first of all,please generally indicate the first page and put the precise reference afterwards. This facilitates locating the text passage (e.g. in BGE, publications of the Official Compilation of Federal Legislation, Federal Gazette).

Citation of Judgements of the Federal Supreme Court.

BGE 127 I 164 consid. 3c p. 171 (if necessary)

Citation of judgements that have been published in the Official Compilation (OC, hard copy and web). Possible indication of the consideration is optional; it stands, as the case may be, in front of the page reference which is also optional. No commas within one reference, several references are separated by commas.

If several BGE are cited consecutively:

Each reference consists of a complete chain of «BGE», number of volume, roman number of the part and first page of the decision, potentially supplemented by «consid.» and «p.».

Judgement of the Federal Supreme Court 9C_654/2007 of 28 January 2008, destined for publication

Citation of judgements that are neither published in the OC nor in a trade journal, which are destined for publication.

Judgement of the Federal Supreme Court 2A.254/2000 of 2 April 2001 consid. 1

Citation of judgements that are neither published in the OC nor in a trade journal, irrespective of whether they are published online or not.

Judgement of the Federal Supreme Court 1P.440/2000 of 1 February 2001, (publ. in:) SJ 2001 I p. 221 or SJ 2001 I p. 221, 1P.440/2000

Citation of judgements that have been published in a trade journal.

Further information: www.bger.ch/01_zitierregeln_d.pdf, citation rules by the Federal Supreme Court published in May 2013 (available in German, French and Italian).

Citation of Judgements of the Federal Administrative Court.

BVGE 2007/1 consid. 1.1.1 p. 4

For judgements that are published in the OC. Possible indication of the consideration is optional; it stands, as the case may be, in front of the page reference, which is also optional. No commas within one reference, several references are separated by commas.

If several BVGE are cited consecutively:

Each reference consists of a complete chain of «BVGE», year and number of the decision, potentially supplemented by «consid.» and «p.».

Judgement of the Federal Administrative Court B-2125/2006 of 26 April 2007, destined for publication

For judgements which are destined for publication in the OC, but have not yet been published at the moment of citation.

Judgement of the Federal Administrative Court A-3478/2007 of 1 September 2007 consid. 1.1.1

For judgements that are not part of the OC, irrespective of whether they are published online or not.

Judgement of the Federal Administrative Court A-3478/2007 of 1 September 2007, (publ. in:) SJ 2001 I p. 221 or SJ 2001 I p. 221, A-3478/2007

For Judgements that have been published in a trade journal.

Further information: www.bger.ch/zitierregeln.pdf, citation rules by the Federal Supreme Court published in May 2013 (available in German, French and Italian).

Citation of Judgements of the Federal Criminal Court

TPF 2004 40 consid. 2.1 p. 43

For judgements that are published in the OC. Possible indication of the consideration is optional; it stands, as the case may be, in front of the page reference, which is also optional. No commas within one reference, several references are separated by commas.

If several TPF are cited consecutively:

Each reference consists of a complete chain of «TPF», number of year / volume and first page of the decision, potentially supplemented by «consid.» and «p.».

Judgement of the Federal Criminal Court TK.2006.133 of 21 September 2006,
destined for publication

For judgements, which are destined for publication in the OC, but have not yet been published at the moment of citation.

Judgement of the Federal Criminal Court BB.2005.35 of 10 October 2005 consid. 2

For judgements that are not part of the OC, irrespective of whether they are published online or not.

Judgement of the Federal Criminal Court BB.2005.35 of 10 October 2005, (publ. in:) SJ 2001 I p. 221 or SJ 2001 I p. 221, BB.2005.35

For Judgements that have been published in a trade journal.

Further information: www.bger.ch/zitierregeln.pdf, citation rules by the Federal Supreme Court published in May 2013 (available in German, French and Italian).

Documents of the Federal Gazette (BBl)

  • BBl 2002 7859, p. 7864 (p. is optional)

Documents of the Official Compilation of Federal Legislation (AS)

  • AS 2004 1677, S. 1687 (p. is optional)

Citation of Judgements of German Federal Courts

Federal Constitutional Court
= BVerfG

Cited e.g.

BVerfG, Order of the second Chamber of the First Senate of 11 November 2002 - 1 BvR 2145/0, BVerfGE 57, 70 <98 f.>

Federal Court of Justice
= BGH

Cited e.g.

BGH, Judgement of 25 July 1989 - 1 StR 479/88, BGHSt 36, 231, 234;

BGH, Judgement of 13 January 2011 - I ZR 111/08;

BGH, Judgement of 4 march 2010 - III ZR 79/09, BGHZ 184, 345;

BGH, Order of 10 January 1995 - X ZB 11/92, Rn. 12, BGHZ 128, 280, 283

Senat für Anwaltssachen: AnwZ (B) 22/09

Senat für Notarsachen: NotZ 9/09)

Federal Administrative Court
= BVerwG

Cited e.g.
Order of 3 February 2011 - BVerwG 10 B 32.10;
BVerwG, Judgement of 15 December 2010 - BVerwG 8 C 37.09

Federal Labour Court
= BAG

Cited e.g.
BAG, Senat 27 November 2008 - 6 AZR 632/08 - Rn. 20, BAGE 128, 317


Literature.

Cited authors are generally written in small caps.

As we’d like to keep the citations as consistent as possible please follow these rules: When first citing a book or an article, state the complete first and last name(s) of the author(s); first and last name(s) of the editor(s); title of the book or the article; title and volume of the journal or rather title of the work and place as well as year of publication; page or paragraph number or footnote (for stating a cited footnote in the cited work).

Commentaries and online journals published by Editions Weblaw shall be cited according to our own recommended forms of citation.

In the second citation, you can revert to a shortened way, e.g. without first name, without stating the title, but referring to the first detailed citation (footnote).

Incidentally, we recommend the common forms of citation that are described for example in Martin Wyss / Franz Kummer / Rafael Häcki, Suchen – Finden – Überzeugen, Arbeitstechniken im juristischen Alltag, 2nd edition, Editions Weblaw, Berne 2014.

Abbreviations.
In relation to abbreviations we also pursue an application as uniform as possible. We differentiate between two categories:

  1. Abbreviations introduced by the author: If an author introduces abbreviations theyare to be used consequently. The word that is supposed to be abbreviated should be fully written out only at the first mentioning followed by the parenthesised abbreviation.
  2. Common abbreviations: e.g., i.e., etc., viz., n.b., Inc., Ltd., FDFA, FDHA, FDJP, DDPS, FDF, EAER, DETEC (7 Federal Departments). The common abbreviations never need to be written out.


Links.

We are thankful for links to additional information that are accessible online. Correctly cited Judgements of the Federal Supreme Court (BGE-Publications, Judgements destined for publication and Judgements not destined for publication), VPB-Editions, SR-Numbers, OC-Editions are automatically linked by us.

3. Particularities Jusletter.

Jusletter – The generalistic designed specialist journal for swiss jurists has been published every Monday since 2000, about 45 times a year.

The Most Important Article Categories.

  • Scientific Articles
  • Commented overview of jurisdiction
  • Judgement reviews
  • Articles
  • Essays
  • Conference proceedings
  • Recensions

Requirements for Articles.

  • With regards to content «correct» and argued in a reasonable / comprehensible manner;
  • is in its formulation discernibly addressing a legal audience;
  • footnotes are not mandatory;
  • references to laws are cited;
  • contains references to the essential literature;
  • contains references to the essential jurisprudence;
  • content is conveniently structured and organized;
  • offers an added value for the reading audience interested in the subject.

Additional Requirements for Scientific Articles.

  • As a general rule, a topic is discussed more profound and broader than in an article. Scientific articles also tend to be more extensive than articles, though this is neither mandatory nor the sole criteria. The scientific article is essential or at least important regarding the respective field.
  • Generally, an author develops scientifically and formally correct ideas and viewpoints by studying literature and court rulings.
  • Relevant literature is assimilated and cited;
  • relevant rulings areassimilated and cited;
  • references to laws are cited comprehensively;
  • where needed, legislative materials are cited;
  • cross-references within an article are desirable.

Requirements for Judgement Reviews.

  • Discussion or rather commenting of a judgement (Federal Court, Federal Penal Court, Federal Administrative Court, cantonal courts, if the decision is of particular importance):
  • at least contains concrete references such as in which considerations the court has expressed itself to what points.

Requirements for an Essay.

  • Short, witty article;
  • legal topic, but not necessarily a purely legal article;
  • possible are e.g. topics like legal policy;
  • focus is the authors’ personal examination of the topic;
  •  «correct» in terms of content and argued in a reasonable manner;
  • criteria of strict scientific methodology can be disregarded.

Requirements for a Review.

  • Title must be as follows: «Review: Title of the Book»;
  • Evaluating summary of the book, including a conclusion;
  • The bibliographic information at the end of the review should contain the following data: author (or editor), title, subtitle, series inlcuding volume number, place of publication, publisher, date, number of pages, ISBN, price.

Jusletter is available as a subscription service. Individual Articles may be purchased in our shop.

Editorial staff.

Contact: jusletter@weblaw.ch

4. Particularities Jusletter IT – The Journal of IT and Law.

Jusletter IT is published four times a year and pursues an international, multi-lingual as well as an interdisciplinary journal approach. is published four times a year and is structured internationally, multi-lingual and interdisciplinary. Jusletter IT focuses on the fields of IT and Law. The articles are sorted by field of law, region and article category (scientific articles, articles and judgement reviews – see above: 3. Particularities Jusletter).

With Jusletter IT Flash we have introduced a new service to Jusletter IT in December 2015. There, at irregular intervals and between regular issues, articles (briefly and succinctly, max. 3 to 5 pages), podcasts and important information are  published.
 
Jusletter IT is available as a subscription service.
 
 
Contact: jl-it@weblaw.ch

 

5. Particularities of the Swiss Judges' Journal «Justice - Justiz - Giustizia».

The Swiss Judges’ Journal «Justice - Justiz - Giustizia» reports on all concerns of the judiciary in Switzerland, including the prosecuting authorities, and is published four times a year. In particular, the journal is the official publication medium of the Swiss Association of Judges.

The most important categories include:

  • Science;
  • Forum;
  • Column SVR
  • Associations;
  • News CH;
  • News Abroad;
  • Judicature.

The editorial team is responsible for the quality of the Swiss Judges' Journal «Justice - Justiz - Giustizia».

The Swiss Judges' Journal's correspondents monitor important developments in in the judiciary of their scopes of report. They report particularly about structural and personal alterations as well as legal policy changes on a regular basis.

The Swiss Judges' Journal «Justice - Justiz - Giustizia»is available as a subscription service. Individual Articles may be purchased in our shop
 

6. Particularities dRSK.

The dRSK contains case law commentaries from over 100 specialists in over 30 fields. The commentaries of the experts go through an internal peer-review process which is conducted by renowned editorial staff. Thus, a high standard of quality is guaranteed.
 
Besides the commentaries from experts the dRSK also offers blog posts. The authors and owners of the blogs are responsible for the content of these posts (a list of the blogs can be found here).
 
Furthermore, the podcasts from Swisslaw-Speeches regarding decisions of the Federal Supreme Court (liability law, social security law and civil procedure law among other things) are at your disposal.
 
The dRSK is offered seperately and as part of the information and research portal «Push-Service Entscheide». The commentaries are citable using the suggestion for citing as well as recitals.
 
On the one hand, the commentaries, blogs and podcasts are published in «Push-Service Entscheide», on the other hand a «monthly review» is published at the beginning of each month in dRSK.
 
Particularities.
  • Extent of the commentary: max. 10‘000 characters including blanks;
  • Number and date of the commented decision are to be presented.

The article is to be divided into following categories:

  • Situation;
  • Considerations;
  • Commentary.
dRSK is available as a subscription service
 

7. Particularities Podcasts / Videos / Videocasts (hereafter referred to as Podcasts).

As an additional «form of contribution», podcasts can be published in the online journals Jusletter, Jusletter IT, Swiss Judges' Journal «Justice - Justiz - Giustizia» and dRSK.
 
Generally, these are film and sound recordings of a presentation, presentations including sound recordings of a speech or just sound recordings with a length that should not exceed 30 minutes.
 
To be able to guarantee the searchability, these «contributions» also need an abstract in accordance with the style sheet. Additionally, information such as literature, materials, media releases or judgements can be stored and linked.
 
Otherwise, the specifications listed under section 1 (Procedure of Publishing in Editions Weblaw – Online Journals [peer-review process].) and section 2 (Design of your text – Online Journals) apply.
 

8. Copyright / Transfer of Rights / Right of Access.

Copyright.
The authors assure and avouch that they are entitled to the sole copyright to their work and that as of now they have not made any provisions that would oppose the transfer of rights of these guidelines.

If the work contains parts of other works (linguistic, text, imagery or musical works of a lesser extent, single works of the visual arts or individual photographic works), the author is obliged to designate (indication of source) the works or parts of the works contained.

The author handles the obtaining of reproduction permissions for pictures or texts. The authors bear the costs.

Transfer of Rights.
The publisher (Editions Weblaw) receives the following exploitation rights without a claim to exclusiveness:

The author grants the publisher the right to publish his/her articles online in Jusletter, Jusletter IT, dRSK and the Swiss Judges' Journal «Justice - Justiz - Giustizia» as well as in printed or other digital forms (e.g. e-books, podcasts). The publisher has the right to compose and publish summaries, automatically create and publish registers (indexes, registers of law acts, lists of abbreviations) as well as to extend the work by references to the original sources (court rulings, legislation etc.) by means of technical additives.

Auxiliary bibliographic data as well as the abstracts may be incorporated into free-access or fee-based databases. For retrieval of the full text, the original source has to be indicated. Assimilating the full text into commercial data bases like so-called online-repositories or rather open access databases is forbidden (except for articles or podcasts that are released for free by the publisher in the first place) . The publisher holds the sole right to make the article available in free-access or fee-based databases.

All articles will be archived in e-Helvetica/Helveticat by the Swiss National Library.

The publisher is obligated to disclose the date of first publication and the author. The re-publication by the author has to be approved by the publisher.

Apart from that, the author generally remains free to use his article, he/she is particularly allowed to publish it on his/her own website without an embargo period. The author retains his/her copyrights and may publish the articles in other media. With a citation, he/she indicates the first publication in our online journals. Podcasts published in online journals have an embargo period of 6 months. A publication needs to be approved by the publisher. Other than that, the above-mentioned provisions regarding citation and indication of original source apply. Podcasts that are made freely available by the publisher may be uploaded to the speaker’s website without an embargo period, as long as the aforementioned provisions regarding citation and indication are met. Podcasts that have been published in other series (e.g. Podcasts@Weblaw Financial Market Law)and are secured by access authorization or rather a paid subscriptionmay not be made available in other media, unless an explicit authorization is given by the publisher.

Right of Access.
As an author you gain a free two-year access to the online journal you have published in – including its archive. Afterwards, the contract will expire automatically. With each published article a new two-year-period starts running. Already concluded paid subscriptions will not be refunded, they will expire automatically after the contract period (1 year normally) ends. The author is exempted of the notice period.

At many universities Editions Weblaw’s online journals are available free of charge for students and university members (Campus).

The present edition of the Publication Guidelines is updated to 21 Dezember 2016.