A recent paper part of the Ontario Reports contained a new practice direction – correction – contained a brief summary of a practice direction along with directions to a website for more complete information. While lawyers are certainly used to accessing information on the web (SEDAR and eLaws are obvious examples), I had thought that there were certain information flows which were immune from “webinization”. I may have been wrong.
What is the best balance between “paper” and “electronic”? Electronic delivery of information is becoming more and more popular. With the daily flood of email, however, email notification of new developments is not necessarily the best way to insure that new developments are noted. RSS feeds are another obvious tool to deliver the latest and most important news to lawyers – but there is the same risk of “too much information”.
Sowhat is the best combination of paper and electronic? The legal publishers now offer us extensive databases of information, while continuing to deliver paper products to our offices. There is now a considerable quantity of “free” legal information on the web. I admit that I have not figured out (from either a cost or a useability perspective) how to make sure I see the “right” amount of information about current legal developments. Instead, I appear to have adopted an unworkable compromise of continuing to read a great deal of paper (pages of headnotes from the paper parts of case report series, summaries of unreported cases, tables of contents), together with daily or weekly emails containing summaries of important developments, full text of cases, etc.
Am I being foolish to ask the legal publishers to analyze more carefully the dilemma faced by lawyers and offer us better options (both paper and electronic) to cope with this current awareness nightmare?