Corporations Casebook, Printed on demand from H2O

This summer, in conjunction with Professor Spamann’s staff (as well as Berkman-Klein intern Kate Mays), the H2O team exported Prof. Spamann’s Corporations Playlist from H2O and undertook the legwork necessary to insert it into a design program and format it for print-on-demand.

We’re proud to present the end product- pictured below!

While a not-negligible amount of man hours were necessary to produce this, we’re working on streamlining this process. The end goal is to make the steps between exporting playlist and printing book as few as possible.

Watch this space for more on this front!

Interested in turning a playlist of your own into a print-on-demand version? Shoot us an email at h2o[at and let’s discuss!

New content on H2O! Samuel Moyn’s International Law and Human Rights course

With assistance from the H2O team, HLS professor Samuel Moyn has uploaded the materials for his International Law and Human Rights course, including case law, articles, and international organizations’ documents.

The materials for his course can be found here.

Interested in using H2O to upload your own course materials? Reach out to the H2O team at h2o[at, or create an account today!


Syllabus-only content on H2O: Bruce Mann

With the wide range of law courses taught across the US, instructors having insight into how their peers structure their own courses can have significant pedagogical utility. H2O is a great way for faculty to be able to view syllabi of their compatriots.

One example is Prof. Bruce Mann, who teaches, among other courses, Property at Harvard Law School. While H2O isn’t his primary method of delivering materials to his students, his Property syllabus structure is on H2O, for others to view, interpret, and if they like, clone in H2O.

See Professor Mann’s Property syllabus structure here.

Questions or thoughts? contact the team at  H2O at!


Multimedia playlist on H2O: Chris Bavitz

Many instructors use H2O’s database of court decisions to compile a playlist that mirrors a customary casebook; others have taken advantage of H2O being a web-based platform, such as  Harvard Law School instructor, Chris Bavitz. He has utilized H2O for his Music and Digital Media course. The Introduction section of his playlist demonstrates the range of items he draws on for this course:Screen Shot 2016-04-11 at 7.11.09 PM

In just this one section, Professor Bavitz has included a self-annotated case (Eldred v Ashcroft), sections of U.S. Copyright Law, a section of Larry Lessig’s text Remix, as well as links to articles on Huffington Post, New York Times, and Salon, as well as videos on YouTube and the PBS website.

Creating items to add to a playlist, such as the YouTube video used by Professor Bavitz, is very simple. After creating an account, you can click ‘Create,” select “video”:
Screen Shot 2016-04-14 at 11.37.13 AM

enter the video title, and paste in the embed code copied from the YouTube video (see below):Screen Shot 2016-04-14 at 11.40.43 AMThis creates a media item (video) that, when clicked, appears embedded in H2O:

Screen Shot 2016-04-12 at 6.33.36 PM

Interesting in learning more? Visit to create a free account or email us at h2o[[at]

H2O Doc export: Word Styles

When an H2O playlist or item is exported as a Word document, the exported .doc file comes with “Word styles” already added to the document for use. (A style is a set of formatting characteristics, such as font name, size, color, paragraph alignment and spacing.)

Through the use of Word styles, you can quickly and easily apply a set of formatting choices consistently throughout your document. H2O’s .doc exports include styles that already correspond to areas in the document, ex. “Item description,” “Playlist title,” “Annotated text” etc.

By right-clicking on a specific style in the Word header, you can modify that style (for example, by changing text color to red):

and that change will apply to all text that falls within that style:Screen Shot 2016-03-11 at 7.34.02 PM

Note: Word styles are applied to the document upon export, based off the HTML tags of the particular items- cases, text blocks – within it. Not all items in H2O have identical HTML, meaning that while Word styles will successfully apply to the majority of items in an export, there may be some outliers that must be manually changed to reflect what’s changed when a Word style is modified.

Jonathan Zittrain’s H2O-made Torts Casebook

Having built his Torts Playlist on H2O, Prof. Jonathan Zittrain was interested in converting that work into a physical casebook. Utilizing H2O’s new export feature and with the assistance of Jordi Weinstock and Samantha Bates, edited cases and commentary were pulled out of H2O and, after some additional formatting work, a casebook was created & printed for Prof. Zittrain’s 1L course at Harvard Law School.

“Torts!” was printed by a local on-demand service and is a hit with Professor Zittrain’s 1L students. This is an exciting project to see come to fruition, as the casebook was created for free in H2O, and being able to create print-on-demand books one of the goals of H2O’s continually-improving export feature.


Interesting in learning more? Visit to create a free account or email us at h2o[[at]

H2O’s print improvements

This week the H2O team is releasing an update that will expand your options for printing playlists and other content from H2O. Up until now, your only option has been to print directly from the web browser, with limited capabilities for reformatting or restyling content.

H2O’s forthcoming changes will allow you to export a playlist, or any portion of a playlist, as a Microsoft Word file. This will enable you to edit content or modify styles within Word before printing or converting to PDF. If you prefer to print directly from the web browser, that capability remains.

New Print Header
The H2O print header has been revamped as part of the changes to print.

You must first be logged in before you can export, since H2O emails a link to the exported content to the email address associated with your account once it’s ready.

After clicking the print button on the right side of the screen when viewing a playlist or piece of content, you will be taken to the print preview & new print header:

toolbar h2o^click to enlarge

style presets allow you to toggle between predetermined collections of print settings – such as ‘classic’ and ‘modern’ – if you wish to use a default set rather than modifying the settings individually.

style settings allow you to customize individual style elements before export.
→ TOC 
is table of contents: the number selected determines the depth of the TOC you wish to output (i.e., 5 will output a TOC that is 5 levels deep).
→ Margins are the four settings on the right side: left, right, top and bottom margins are set here.
→ Para Nos. are paragraph numbers. (Note: paragraph numbers do not carry over to Microsoft Word export at this time.)

annotation settings allow you to dictate how to annotations will appear on the export.

export format is where you select whether you want a Word (.doc) or PDF export.

Printing from Browser
The print preview screen is now a true print preview, meaning the content is not displayed in full in the browser.
If you wish to print from browser, scroll to the bottom of the preview and select “view the rest in your browser”:Screen Shot 2016-01-05 at 10.27.25 AM

As this notes, loading large playlists in your browser may temporarily freeze will working to display all content and annotations. Once this has completed loading, you can select File -> Print in your browser, as was the process previously.

H2O Faculty User Profile: Brian JM Quinn

Boston College Associate Professor Brian Quinn has been an H2O user since 2013. He has used H2O to teach his Corporations course for the past two years, but this year he took the Corporations playlist he created in H2O and published it in book form on Amazon and Createspace.

Three-fourths of his class purchased this casebook at a price of $30 each. The book sales produced a royalty of $10.17 a book, all of which professor Quinn has directed toward Boston College’s Public Interest Law Fund.

The H2O team is currently working on tools to make export and print easier for both faculty and student users, so other users can similarly easily export their work to print-on-demand.

H2O annotating: easier than ever

With H2O’s re-done annotator tool, the most commonly used annotation – hiding text – is drastically simplified. Previously, the hiding of text required one to highlight the text, name and create a layer, then navigate to the SHOW/HIDE button and hide that layer.

Now, one has to simply select the text they would like hidden, and click the hide-eyeball from the annotator toolbar that appears, and the text is hidden. The difference between these is demo’d here.

The following demonstrates the entire suite of annotations available: hide text, highlight, comment, and link – here!

H2O: Changes, updates and new features

We’ve been hard at work on H2O, focusing on improving site performance and user experience. Here are some of the improvements we’ve unveiled this summer!

1. Advanced Search
General search, playlist creation and dashboard all now have advanced search capability: results can be filtered by item type, creator, or keyword.
Adv Search screenshot

2. Dashboard
In addition to advanced search sorting, the user dashboard allows users to set their Print Defaults through My Settings. New playlists can also be tagged with “Primary” to further assist sorting.
Workshop screenshot

3. Annotator
The annotator tool, used for selecting text to edit (hide, highlight etc.) has been significantly simplified: instead of clicking the first & last word of the section you want to modify, you can now click-and-drag to select the desired text. In addition, item owners (and viewers) now have the option to hide paragraph numbers.

4. Performance improvements & bug fixes
We’ve implemented quite a few improvements and fixes, including deactivating the karma bar & heat map which have given H2O a significant performance boost.

Note: with the annotator change, the way text was layered changed from word-to-word to a full text selection -this allows the click-and-drag that’s now possible.
When this change was implemented, it retained all collages’ layers but toggled the state of any that were “on” (i.e., hidden or highlighted) to off. If you have collages from before this summer’s annotator improvement, this may necessitate re-hiding portions of your collages.

We’re pleased with progress so far and are excited for what’s in store! We appreciate any suggestions as we continue to work on hard enhancing and improving H2O -reach out to us at  h2o at !