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Archive for ‘Legal Information: Publishing’

NDAs: One Tight, One Loose

Ideas are certainly a coin of the internet business realm, if not the only specie, and so it’s natural that makers and marketers want to claim and protect them. Since there’s no copyright in ideas, corporations are careful to require strict non-disclosure agreements from those whom they employ or with whom they do a certain business, relying on secrecy (and prompt NDA enforcement) to protect a notion until it can be matured to a patentable or copyright-able form. Apple, for instance, imposed a NDA obligation on anyone who wanted access to that company’s iPhone operating system data in order to . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Publishing, Technology

Publication Bans in the Era of Online Information

The website of the Ministry of the Attorney General for Ontario includes an interesting discussion of publication bans in Ontario, but really misses the point when it comes to the distribution of court judgments and publication bans in the era of online distribution and access to legal information.

Publication bans are described on the website as “an exception to the constitutional right of the media to publish information about court cases”. The website goes on to say that publication bans may be necessary in certain cases “to protect the fairness and integrity of the case, the privacy or safety of . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Publishing, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

Persistent URLs for Legislation

The Library of Congress website THOMAS, which provides information about U.S. legislation, has established a system of persistent URLs for legislative documents. This means that hyperlinks using this format will always (i.e. for the foreseeable future) take a reader to the desired document, regardless of any server changes that might have occurred since the link was created.

The persistent link is created by following a syntax that assembles a document’s URI. (A “uniform resource identifier” is a unique string of characters that is used to identify a particular resource on the internet; a URL — “uniform resource . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Publishing, Substantive Law: Legislation

Electronic Casebooks

Robert Ambrogi has a post over on Legal Blog Watch about a conference at Seattle University School of Law on the digital future of legal casebooks. It seems that the situation in the U.S. is no different from that here: publishers and academics are unclear about what they want in a casebook, though both (some academics, certainly) perceive that electronic casebooks are the way to go.

One upshot appears to be that CALI and Gene Koo will organize a group to build and use an e-casebook on cyberlaw. There is, of course, a certain “rightness” about a course in . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training, Legal Information: Publishing, Technology

Will Old Law Reports Ever Die?

From the earliest days of online legal research, the death of the traditional law report in print was predicted. Online access to cases would make print unnecessary. In the paperless world that was imminent, there would be no need for the traditional law report. Storage problems for sets of law report series would be eliminated and the cost of searching cases would be greatly reduced.

That was the vision for online legal research in 1973 when Lexis Nexis and Quicklaw pioneered in offering commercial online access to case law. It was going to be just a matter of time before . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Legal Information: Publishing, Reading, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

CanLII Expands Labour Law Coverage

In case you missed the announcement yesterday, let me report that CanLII has added 25 databases involving 130,000 decisions in labour law. These come from boards and arbitrations in just about all of the jurisdictions in the country. For a list, see the CanLII announcement. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Publishing, Substantive Law

Banning Spam… Et Al.?

The Conservative Party of Canada has announced as part of the current federal election campaign that if re-elected, it will bring forward legislation to ban spam.

The Canadian Press story mentions this (and a number of other consumer-oriented promises).

Earlier this month the Supreme Court of Virginia, in Jaynes v Virginia [PDF], struck down that state’s anti-spam legislation as unconstitutional, because it was ‘over-broad’. Its rules prohibiting misuse or misrepresentation of IP addresses applied not only to commercial but to all messages, including political or religious ones. This was an impermissible infringement on free speech, said the court. As a . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Publishing, Substantive Law

Ontario Divisional Court Judgments

A note from Maritime Law Book points out that cases from the Ontario Divisional Court from 1984 to the present are available free on MLB’s Ontario Appeal Cases database and that CanLII offers Div. Ct. (Ont.) cases from 2002 to the present only. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Publishing, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

Europeana Is Coming

The European Community is preparing to launch a digital “library, museum and archive,” Europeana, that will give visitors some access to two million European objects of cultural interest and value. Two years in the making, this front end for a host of digital objects will launch in November of this year. But you can see a canned demo now that will give you a pretty good idea of what’s in store.

There’s also a short video accessible from the main page that’s less useful but which features Nancy Sinatra’s “These Boots Are Made For Walking,” one of the all-time . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Publishing

Lawyer Type


Adobe Caslon “a”
Wikipedia

Typography is one of my fascinations. Tiny adjustments to the height of ascenders, to the contours of the very thin lines, to the flares that finish off the ends of strokes — all can affect our reading in ways that are too subtle to be noticed by the ordinary eye. Ever since the invention of movable type, there have been people — typographers — who worried about how to make these minature (minuscule!) moves, how best, in effect, to make reading as effortless and as enjoyable an experience as possible.

But this subtlety has a price. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Publishing, Practice of Law

Victorian Government Commitment to Access to Legal Information

Good news from Austlii, which has had a rocky year since some of its core funding was cut off. There is a good explanation of just how the legal profession benefits in a letter from the Law Council.

From a Canadian perspective, Austlii has effectively supplanted the commercial services for our access to Australian law. It’s financial troubles are deeply troubling, and one hopes that Canberra will follow Victoria’s lead

The Australasian Legal Information Institute (AustLII) is to receive nearly $840,000 to expand the scope of Victorian legal information, such as legislation, decisions and interpretive material, that was

. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Publishing

Happy Birthday Canlii

Our friends at Canlii are celebrating eight years. Yes August 29, 2000 it all started.

Now CanLII publishes over 140 databases, gets nearly 25,000 visits per day, 2,500 new cases are added every week and 11 statutory databases are updated monthly.

The announcement has links so you can look back at what it used to look like.

Long may it thrive. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Publishing, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Technology