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Archive for June, 2009

The Friday Fillip

Flickr is one of the roaring dot com successes… Modest start, Canadian connection, unfortunate trend setter for dropping the ‘e’ in ‘er’, huge sale to Yahoo! And now with an astonishing two billion photographs on board. How to mine this wealth? Well, there are a good many ways — in addition to Flickr’s own search function — it seems, and in today’s fillip I’ll take a very brief look at a few of them.

Compfight helps you find photos you can use — because they’re licensed under one or another Creative Commons license. As well, you can ask it to . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Organization Charts via Cogmap

Who doesn’t love Org Charts? Thanks to Karen Sawatzky re-tweeting Mark Eaton, I have a new source to feed my desire to see collections of organization charts, Org Charts by Cogmap.

What is Cogmap?

Cogmap is the Wikipedia of organization charts. We are an organization chart wiki! This means that it is a collection of organization charts online that anyone can edit, add to, and help maintain.

Cogmap is a tool for sales people, entrepreneurs, and recruiters to understand organizations and keep information up to date. If you are like us, you had some of these things happen to

. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information, Substantive Law

The Tweet Stops Here With Tony LaRusa

We’ve talked a little about litigation around domain names of famous people. But what about accounts on social media platforms?

Tony LaRusa, manager for the St. Louis Cardinals, is suing Twitter at the Superior Court of the State of California for a now inactive account that bore his name and likeness in LaRusa v. Twitter, Inc.

Although close scrutiny of the account does indicate it was not really LaRusa’s (citing parody), they did make off-the-cuff remarks like,

Lost 2 out of 3, but we made it out of Chicago without one drunk driving incident or dead pitcher.

LaRusa had apparently . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law, Technology

Asper Law Centre Website

The University of Toronto’s David Asper Centre for Constitutional Rights has a new website. Within U of T’s Faculty of Law, the Centre is “devoted to advocacy, research and education in the areas of constitutional rights in Canada.”

At the moment the resources available via the site seem to be those culled from the normal operation of the Faculty of Law, i.e. relevant journal articles and books. There’s an interesting section on “Cross-Canada Appellate Cases,” which lists some recent cases from across the country and offers brief summaries of the issues involved. I’d recommend that they have an . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training, Education & Training: Law Schools, Legal Information, Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Substantive Law

Newsletter Hidden Gems

In the new world order of feeds and blogs and tweets, we don’t talk about newsletters anymore.

Yes my friends, newsletters still exist! Michel-Adrian posted about finding law firm newsletters and Ted mentioned the CCH Law Student newsletter and we all know about the collection of law firm publications at Lexology.

Although the lines blur with technology, I suggest that to be labeled a newsletter, the information must be sent in hard copy or be made available electronically with some sign up action on the part of the recipient. Though signing up for information by a recipient may seem . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Publishing, Miscellaneous

Presumption of Innocence Now Meaningless in Ontario?

Back in April I wrote a somewhat sarcastic article here on criticising the new Road Safety Act (“RSA”) as allowing “convictions without trials” ( The story took on a bit of a life of its own resulting in some TV appearances that in turn generated a fair bit of commentary from the general public. One theme that ran through a vocal minority of those who called in to the talk shows took me to task for “overreacting” or being “alarmist” in my complaint that the RSA authorized police to issue tickets from which there is no appeal. . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law

Google Squared Launches

The semantic web is coming, the semantic web is coming!

Simon Chester alerted us a while ago to Google Lab’s new project: Stub Posting on Google Squared. It has now launched: Simon C asked in his post what Slaw readers might make of this, and I’d like to repeat his question now that you can take it out for a spin and kick its tires. I can see how the basic organization into fundamental facets that shift depending on the nature of your search terms would be useful to school students; but I’m not sure whether it . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Technology, Technology: Internet

Canada’s Big Neighbour…

… to the north west is Greenland. We moan about how folks in the U.S. know precious little about Canada, even though we’re camped right on their doorstep (well, I do, certainly). But what do we know about Greenland, with whom we share a long boundary? Do we even know that it goes by the name of Kalaallit Nunaat (i.e. land of the Kalaallit, who are the people of Western Greenland)? Or that yesterday its citizens elected the left-wing Inuit Ataqatigiit (Community of the People, IA) over the Social Democratic Siumut Party that governed Greenland Kalaallit Nunaat for three decades? . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law

Great Firewall of China Descends on Tiananmen Square

As the rest of the world prepares to observe the 20th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square on June 4, 1989, the Chinese government is taking its usual steps to prevent citizens from talking about it. According to various reports, TV broadcasts have gone black when the issue is brought up and articles have been censored and pages ripped out of foreign- and Hong Kong-based newspapers.

In addition, draconian restrictions on internet traffic have been put in place, including keyword-based censoring and active monitoring. The censors have also blocked websites such as Twitter, Flickr (in case the illegal photo gets . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Anti-Spam Bill Merits Close Attention

John Gregory recently mentioned the new anti-spam bill, the Electronic commerce Protection Act, Bill C-27.

My take on the bill is in my Free Press article for this week. It can be found on my blog, the Free Press site, and the Canoe tech pages.

In a nutshell, while the goal is laudible, the wording needs to be looked at very carefully before it is passed, as it has the potential to affect more than what we would typically consider spam. Indeed, it might be interpreted to prohibit things that business and consumers alike would consider normal.

It also . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Online Federal Legislation Authoritative

Library Boy noted yesterday that as a consequence of the Legislation Revision and Consolidation Act federal consolidated statutes and regulations are ‘official’ and can be used for “evidentiary purposes.” The government press release is here.

The federal Laws Site also now offers a side-by-side bilingual version of legislation in PDF. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Substantive Law: Legislation