Each Monday we present brief excerpts of recent posts from five of Canada’s award-winning legal blogs chosen at random* from forty-one recent Clawbie winners. In this way we hope to promote their work, with their permission, to as wide an audience as possible.
Looking Abroad: The UK’s New Supreme Court Flexes its Muscles on Fundamental Justice
Canadian law students are reminded of their imperial heritage in the many cases they study from the “House of Lords.” The House of Lords as a judicial institution actually ceased to exist in 2009. The Appellate Committee of the House of Lords, as it was formally known, has been replaced by the new United Kingdom Supreme Court (UKSC). One of the aims of this reform was greater judicial independence. At the time, skeptics questioned whether a re-branding would achieve anything. The UK is in the unusual situation of having an informal constitution whose aim was to bind the monarch, and not Parliament. Therefore, it is interesting to consider a recent decision in which the UKSC seemingly overrode a statute in spite of this constitutional handicap. The case of R. v. Hughes,  UKSC 56, dealing with an absolute liability driving offence . . .
Wise Law Blog
140 Law – Legal Headlines for Friday, September 6, 2013
Here are the leading legal headlines from Wise Law on Twitter for Friday, September 6, 2013:
· Tim Hortons coin thrower found guilty of assault
· Japan’s Fukushima region fishery products banned in South Korea
· More law profs respond to Obama’s call to make law school two years
· Recent Publications From the Canadian Judicial Council on Court Management
· Worse than PRISM: the NSA’s war against Internet encryption . . .
Youth & Work
Should advertising unpaid internships be banned?
Earlier this week Nick Clegg, the Deputy Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, came out swinging against the idea of a ban on the advertising of unpaid internships. This was an interesting development in the ongoing battle against unpaid internships in the U.K. (read about a big win here). Earlier this year, U.K. MP Hazel Blears proposed a private members’ bill which would have banned unpaid internships advertisements. You can read her address to Parliament upon the first reading of the Bill here. It should be noted that Mr. Clegg’s comments appear to directed to Ms. Blears supporters and intern rights advocacy groups pushing for an advertising ban. This (rather wonky) blog post is going to explain the law regarding unpaid internships in the U.K. . . .
Entertainment & Media Law Signal
Enforceability of Depiction Releases Redux – MHR Board Game Design v CBC
Whatever else one might want to say about the CBC television series Dragons’ Den, this much is indisputable: no other television show in Canadian history has been as important for advancing the state of Canadian jurisprudence regarding the enforceability of depiction releases. In the most recent case, a lawyer who appeared on the show had his claim against the CBC dismissed on a motion for summary judgment. Depiction releases typically contain language which not only allows a producer to make use of footage and photographs of a TV show participant, but which also specifically precludes the participant from suing the producers or broadcasters of the show for any reason – one previously unsettled issue was the extent to which such language (which is generally provided to participants on a “take it or leave it” basis) would be enforced by the courts. The answer appears unambiguous: a properly drafted release will be fully enforced by the courts . . .
Off the Shelf
It’s that time of year! The 1Ls are being initiated into the ways of the law student today, and soon the rest of the Osgoode community will return from what was hopefully an extremely relaxing and invigorating summer next week. While I’m sure that many students are not even thinking about the library while it’s still hot and humid outside (and certainly not before Labour Day), the time will come when you need to knuckle down and actually get some study and research done (and it will come sooner than you think!). I just want to run down a few of the very basics about the library . . .
*Randomness here is created by Random.org and its list randomizing function.