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Archive for November, 2012

May Receivers and Trustees Require Disclosure of Passwords to Do Their Work?

Since most information these days is generated, communicated and stored electronically, those who need access to a person’s information need access to the person’s information systems. That access may require a password and perhaps a means of decrypting the information. To what extent can the person with a legal right or even duty to access the information compel disclosure of these access methods?

In Ireland, a receiver is investigating the corporate and personal affairs of Sean Quinn in his dealings with the Bank of Ireland. The High Court of Ireland has ordered that several members of the Quinn family turn . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law, ulc_ecomm_list

The Friday Fillip: A New Design for Slaw

After more than 300 frivolous Friday Fillips, I feel I can hijack one fillip to do a bit of administrative business, namely to announce that as of this coming Sunday, Slaw will have a new design. I want to tell you a little bit about it here.

Webdesign styles change quite rapidly, and in the two years and more since our last makeover there’s been quite a movement towards enhancing readability. This makes great sense, especially for a publication that works its magic in words. As of Sunday, Slaw will load more quickly than ever before, and the text will . . . [more]

Posted in: The Friday Fillip

Insurance Policies From the Strange Files

If you have an insurable risk, there’s a good chance someone is willing to sell you a policy for it. We’ve all heard stories of celebrities insuring their body parts, but how about someone buying insurance protection just in case they are molested by a ghost or probed by aliens? Here are a few of the strangest insurance policies ever sold. You be the judge if people need them.

Alien Abduction Insurance

Now you can sleep at night knowing that you and your family will be protected against the financially devastating effects of an alien abduction for as little as . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law

Comparative Law Content in Recent Law Commission Reports

I have always loved law reform commission reports. They are great sources for legal research. Many of the reports provide historical background on an issue and you can often find comparative information about how other jurisdictions have responded to a legal problem.

This past month, 3 law commission reports from England and New Zealand caught my attention for how they incorporated a comparative law approach:

. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Substantive Law: Foreign Law

EFF Tutorial on Anonymous Email Accounts

In the fallout surrounding the American FBI investigation of CIA Director David Petraeus, you may have come across stories about how he attempted to hide his digital email trail. Utilizing a jointly held email account, messages between Petraeus and Paula Broadwell were left in draft mode, never to be sent and assumed not to leave a digital trail.

Well, leave it to the EFF to point out where things went so terribly wrong. Take a look at this tutorial released yesterday, on how to create an anonymous email account.

Some of the suggestions include:

  • Using the Tor Browser Bundle;
  • Signing
. . . [more]
Posted in: Technology: Internet

Law Societies as Democracies – Not!

First, I congratulate Treasurer Thomas Conway for opening up Convocation to the public via the internet – this has been a long time coming and has permanently shredded the mystique that has surrounded Convocation for far too long. Hopefully this opening up will inspire a new, fresher slate of benchers to be elected in 2015.

But there is still work to be done.

It was said at the last Convocation, and in various other forums, that democracy is messy but it’s better than the alternative. Cue the dramatic music.

That kind of cold war rhetoric is quaint and interesting, even . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training, Justice Issues, Miscellaneous, Practice of Law

Saskatchewan Employer Successful in Enforcing Non-Compete Clause

The Queen’s Bench for Saskatchewan just granted an injunction restraining a former employee from competing against his former employer, soliciting the employer’s clients, and using any of the employer’s confidential information he garnered while working with the employer.
Posted in: Case Comment, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

A Reinvention of Paper Is Not Enough

If you are a publisher and your e-book strategy is called EPUB or any of the likes, you are still stuck in the print era.

E-book formats and reader devices came with the promise to transform the way we consume books. However, those formats did not reinvent the book but they rather reinvented paper. They do not necessarily offer the possibility for a use case that is radically different from the use cases that we know from the world of print. True, it is cool and practical to take many more books than we can actually read while on vacation. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Publishing

WIPO SCCR 25 Update: Progress on the Horizon

Last week the WIPO Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights (SCCR) met in Geneva to further Member States’ negotiations on several matters.

WIPO published its SCCR 25 conclusions this week, and they are summarized in its SCCR 25 Update. The outcome of the negotiations is progress on three points: work toward a legal instrument to benefit visually impaired or print-disabled persons—the most concrete outcome, it appears (and attaining Canada’s endorsement); exceptions and limitations for libraries and archives and for educational institutions; and the protection of broadcasting organizations.

From the SCCR 25 Update:

Negotiations advanced to the

. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Substantive Law, Technology

Let’s Not Hate on Ford for the Wrong Reasons

Don’t get us wrong, we dislike Rob Ford as much as the next guy. Maybe more. And we were delighted with Justice Hackland’s decision on Monday ordering the Mayor be removed from office for violating Toronto’s Municipal Conflict of Interest Act.

We’re ecstatic about him being booted, but we’re also disappointed with how people continue to flippantly ridicule the Mayor about his weight. His physical appearance is irrelevant, and the more his weight gets brought into this, the further we get from legitimately critiquing his horrible record as a member of City Council, not to mention the further we get . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

ITU Proposes More Government Control Over the Internet

The International Telecommunications Union (ITU), the telecommunications arm of the United Nations, is hosting a World Conference on International Telecommunications starting Dec 3. The agenda includes gaining a role for the ITU on Internet governance. This is in part fueled by repressive government regimes wanting more control over the internet and its users. It has drawn huge opposition from human rights and free speech advocates. Also from companies such as Google. Vint Cerf – now with Google but considered the father of the internet – has come out very strongly against it.

This is a very bad idea. One . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology