Canada’s online legal magazine.

Archive for ‘Technology: Internet’

Darwin Talks and Blockchain Thoughts

OK. Not all lawyers are obsessed with the legal tech revolution.

Not all self-identify as early technology adopters, participate in hackathons, or call themselves lawyerpreneurs.

Some have maybe never even heard about TechLaw, TechReg, BankTech, CoinTech, LoanTech, PayTech, SecTech, TradeTech, InsurTech, InterTech, GovTech… or SmartTech, TechRisk, FinRisk, FinReg, SuperTech, ResTech, SupTech, or even NonNet. (Not you, of course… I’m talking about them.)

Some (presumably) haven’t even heard of Richard Susskind, or read his 2013 book Tomorrow’s Lawyers that predicts radical changes in the legal sector over the next decade due to three main drivers:

  1. Increased pressure to
. . . [more]
Posted in: Technology: Internet

UNCITRAL Adopts Model Law on Electronic Transferable Records

UNCITRAL has now adopted a model law on electronic transferable records. See the press release below. The full text will be available online shortly at the URL shown at the end of the document.

Canadians showed little interest in this project while it was being developed, so Canada’s attendance at the working group meetings was intermittent.

Does it sound more interesting now that it is final? Would your clients benefit from an internationally accepted law on the topic? This UNCITRAL text is the best that will be available in the foreseeable future.

Should steps be taken to implement it here? . . . [more]

Posted in: International law, Technology: Internet, ulc_ecomm_list

Courthouse Libraries BC’s Open Invite in UX Testing “Sprint” to Improve Website

The key to improving ease of use is to erase assumptions. 

That’s important when aiming to improve website usability, generally, but it’s not always easy when you’re dealing with an esoteric culture of users (such as lawyers) who are used to finding information according to old patterns.

Luckily, tools like Treejack, offer “tree testing” as a “usability technique for evaluating the findability of topics in a website.” This is a structure . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Technology: Internet

Be Aware, Be Very Aware

Let’s reclaim our minds from being hijacked by technology”—Time Well Spent

Sam Harris hosts the podcast Waking Up. He holds degrees in philosophy and neuroscience and has written on many topics including neuroscience, moral philosophy, politics, religion, rationality, free will, and ethics. In general he explores “how a growing understanding of ourselves and the world is changing our sense of how we should live.” In this episode called, “What is Technology Doing to Us?,” he talks with Tristan Harris, who describes himself as “an expert on how technology hijacks our psychological vulnerabilities”, is . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Internet

2017 Law via the Internet Conference Call for Papers

The organizers of the 2017 Law via the Internet conference have posted a call for submissions.

The event takes place at the Rutgers Law School in Newark, New Jersey, October 19-21, 2017.

The conference brings together people from the Legal Information Institutes (LIIs) from different countries and continents that together form the Free Access to Law Movement.

The submission deadline for abstracts is July 30, 2017. Organizers are looking for papers on the following topics:

  • Development and Implementation of Standards for Preserving and Presenting Legal Information
  • New Initiatives in Free Access to Law
  • Technical initiatives and developments in
. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information, Technology: Internet

Internet Archive Wins Webby Lifetime Achievement Award

The Internet Archive, a non-profit that has harvested and preserved billions of web pages and made them available for free, has been awarded a Webby Lifetime Achievement Award by the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences.

One of the Archive’s most well-known and coolest products is the Wayback Machine that lets users see what a web page looked like at various times in the past. The Wayback Machine is the librarian’s best friend.

The Award was given to the Internet Archive in recognition of:

” … its unflagging commitment to making the world’s knowledge available online, and preserving

. . . [more]
Posted in: Technology: Internet

What if Your Personal Digital Assistant Defames Somebody?

We recently had a discussion about police access to the recordings made by in-home digital assistants like Amazon’s Alexa and its (her?) ilk.

Now our focus turns to the actions of these devices if they do bad things themselves. This story reports that Siri, Apple’s version, routinely answered requests in Toronto for prostitutes by referring the inquired to an “eSports bar” – one where clients play electronic sports games. Apparently the word may be too close to “escorts” for Siri’s sense of discrimination. It is clear – take it as established for the present discussion – that the bar is . . . [more]

Posted in: International issues, Technology: Internet, ulc_ecomm_list

LSUC Finally Fights Back Around Legal Advertising

Legal marketing has begun to run amok in many major cities in Canada.

I raised attention to this nearly 2 years ago in National Magazine, and since then the mainstream media has picked up on it as well. In particular, the Toronto Star has run a series of articles, focusing primarily on the personal injury bar. There were apparently 604 complaints about licensee advertising in Ontario between 2011-2015, over half of which were initiated by the Law Society of Upper Canada itself.

In response to this, Convocation last Friday introduced a number of changes. The first was to implement . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Marketing, Technology: Internet

Trump Administration to Roll Back Net Neutrality

In 2015 the US FCC took steps to prevent ISPs from discriminating against internet traffic. This is called Net Neutrality, which Wikipedia describes as “…the principle that Internet service providers and governments regulating the Internet should treat all data on the Internet the same, not discriminating or charging differentially by user, content, website, platform, application, type of attached equipment, or mode of communication.”

The gist of the concept is that the owner of the pipes shouldn’t be able to favour the delivery of its own content over content provided by others.

At the risk of oversimplifying this, net neutrality is . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Internet

Reduce the Distraction From the ‘Casino in Your Pocket’

This article is by Tim Lemieux, Claims Prevention & Stakeholder Relations Coordinator at LAWPRO.

In the early days of email, one of the common bits of productivity advice was “turn off your inbox notifications.” The “You’ve Got Mail” sound or pop-up was a constant source of distraction while trying to get work done. Even with the advent of smartphones that advice was still mostly good enough. The phone meant you could check email everywhere you went, but the distraction was still limited to emails and texts from friends and clients. Jump forward to 2017, and we’re all carrying around what . . . [more]

Posted in: Reading: Recommended, Technology: Internet

United States Asking Foreign Visitors for Social Media Info and Cell Phone Contacts

I heard about the United States Custom Border Agency had been asking Canadians for access to their Facebook accounts and cellphones when they arrived at the border to join the women’s march on Washington the day after Donald Trump’s inauguration. When some Canadians refuse to surrender their information, they were denied entry into the US and turned away (this is in addition to those who were refused entry because they were going to the march). I was appalled to hear this, and appalled at the invasion of privacy and violation of civil and human rights – and in 2017! I . . . [more]

Posted in: Justice Issues, Miscellaneous, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Foreign Law, Substantive Law: Legislation, Technology, Technology: Internet

Supreme Court of Canada Tackles Link Rot With New Online Archive

To combat link rot, the Supreme Court of Canada today launched an online archive of Internet Sources Cited in SCC Judgments (1998 – 2016).

Link rot refers to broken URLs or to URLs that direct to the original site but whose corresponding document has been removed or relocated without any information about where to find it.

From the Terms of Use:

“The Office of the Registrar of the SCC, recognizing that web pages or websites that the Court cites in its judgments may subsequently vary in content or be discontinued, has located and archived the content of most

. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information: Publishing, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Technology: Internet