Wednesday: What’s Hot on CanLII

Each Wednesday we tell you which three English-language cases and which French-language case have been the most viewed* on CanLII and we give you a small sense of what the cases are about.

For this last week:

1. Polgampalage v Devani, 2021 ONSC 1157 (CanLII)

[41] The pandemic has been a difficult time for everyone. I have special empathy for students and young lawyers who may be deprived of close contact with mentors and senior peers to assist with their training. Partners, employers, and mentors may not even realize how much their juniors are suffering from the lack of ready access to more experienced colleagues whether for formal training, informal feedback, or even serendipitous educational opportunities that may arise from casual chats in office corridors.

(Check for commentary on CanLII Connects)

2. Rebel News v. Al Jazeera Media, 2021 ONSC 1035 (CanLII)

[60] The defence of responsible communication on matters of public interest requires two elements to be proven: (a) the impugned statements must be on a matter of public interest, and (b) the publisher must demonstrate that it was reasonably diligent in the steps taken to validate the accuracy of the factual statements made.

(Check for commentary on CanLII Connects)

3. Simpson v. Facebook, 2021 ONSC 968 (CanLII)

[26] If there is no evidence that any such personal data was actually shared with Cambridge Analytica, then none of the PCIs that deal with invasions of privacy, whether at common law or under the specified provincial privacy statutes, can be certified. And if none of these PCIs can be certified, it follows that the proposed class action itself cannot be certified.

(Check for commentary on CanLII Connects)

The most-consulted French-language decision was Ward c. Commission des droits de la personne et des droits de la jeunesse (Gabriel et autres)2019 QCCA 2042 (CanLII)

[41] Comme celui-ci le souligne au paragraphe [77] de ses motifs, c’est le plus souvent dans le cadre d’une action en diffamation que les tribunaux sont appelés à déterminer si des propos ou des écrits portent atteinte à la dignité, à l’honneur ou à la réputation d’une personne ou, dit autrement, si des propos sont injurieux ou diffamatoires. Les règles qui régissent, en droit civil québécois, une telle voie d’action sont connues et ont comme fondement l’article 1457 C.c.Q. : le demandeur doit prouver l’existence d’une faute, d’un préjudice et du lien de causalité. Dans ce type de litige, le décideur est souvent appelé, aux fins de déterminer si une « faute civile » a été commise, à statuer sur la délicate question du « point d’équilibre »[22] entre deux valeurs fondamentales qui s’opposent, soit, d’une part, le droit à la dignité, à l’honneur et à la réputation de la personne qui s’estime victime de propos diffamatoires (art. 4 de la Charte) et, d’autre part, la liberté d’expression de l’auteur des propos litigieux (art. 3 de la Charte).

(Check for commentary on CanLII Connects)

* As of January 2014 we measure the total amount of time spent on the pages rather than simply the number of hits; as well, a case once mentioned won’t appear again for three months.

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