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Law via the Internet

The 7th International Conference on the Computerization of Law via the Internet, will be taking place this year, from November 17th to 19th in Vanuatu. I’m sure many in the SLAW community are already aware of this conference, but given the topic, if a SLAW contributor were going to be attending perhaps they could volunteer to make some posts from the conference. I am sure there will be some topics that will lead to good discussions in this forum.

Past conferences have been in Montreal, Sydney and Paris, . . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Global Slaw

I’ve come across a nifty little service, gVisit, that, via some javascript on your site, monitors site visitors and creates a map of their locations using Google Maps. The free version records your site’s last 20 visitors. When I can figure out how to do it, I’ll create a page with a link on the main page, that will let the curious see who’s been scoping Slaw.

But for now I wanted to share this map with you, from yesterday. (Sorry about the quality: I had to cut and paste and then shrink to fit.) I love the fact . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Historical Legislation at Your Fingertips

Our Future, Our Past: The Alberta Heritage Digitization Project (AHDP) is an ongoing, not-for-profit endeavor to provide all those interested in Alberta’s history free, online access to cultural and heritage materials. Don Sanders, librarian at the University of Calgary Law School headed up the legislative project, and the steering committee which I belonged to.

The University of Calgary Press with the support of the Alberta Law Foundation are behind the project, which has now digitized all of the documents that form Alberta’s legislative history. Here you will find all of the Statutes up to 1990, Legislative Assembly Bills, Debates and . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Title Maché

“Paper is everywhere -- floating in the water, trapped in tree branches,? says the Los Angeles Times. For instance, in the basement of the Civil District Courthouse, three bocks from the Superdome, water has lapped over 20 per cent of the 60,000 leather bound books that contain records of all the property transfers in the modern era.... “Whatever our records say, that's who owns the property.?Can you imagine the difficulty?
Posted in: Miscellaneous

Websites – the Definitive Source?

A recent Ontario Reports paper part contained a new Superior Court of Justice Practice Direction – correction – contained a summary of the Practice Direction, and advised readers to consult for further details.

I guess it’s fair to assume that all Ontario lawyers now access websites regularly. It is certainly helpful to know there is one website containing such valuable information. Lawyers in other areas of practice, such as corporate finance, are quite used to accessing websites for day to day valuable information, so the use of websites to convey legal information is not new. The only issue, I . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

The New (?) Economics of Canadian Legal Research

Simon Chester’s post last month about outsourcing legal research referred to a recent U.S. article. Last week, one of my partners forwarded an email he had received from an Indian-based “professional legal organization” offering legal research and writing services.

The prices quoted (US $10 – 15/hour for legal services and US $199 for legal research services on a case – work completed in 72 hours) are much lower than the rates quoted in the earlier article. At these prices, it’s hard to avoid the temptation to “try them out”.

In the wake of Katrina, a number of state jurisdictions are . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Comparative Law

Fascinating developments in the USSC on the extent to which foreign law is relevant and welcome.

This week’s New Yorker has a feature on Justice Kennedy: see “How Anthony Kennedy’s passion for foreign law could change the Supreme Court”

  • The basic debate between the isolationist wing of the court (Nino Scalia) and Kennedy, Breyer and Ginsburg is sketched out well in

  • A good scholarly analysis is found in Professor Anderson’s paper at

  • and the fuller analysis from SSRN at

  • .

    Given that section 1 of the Canadian Charter compels the examination of foreign law, and that . . . [more]

    Posted in: Miscellaneous

    Law Librarian Linkblogs

    [Cross posted @ CS-SIS Blawgs]

    For those interested, both Connie Crosby and myself have created Linkblogs to exchange our ‘online reading lists’ via the RSS Feeds:

    The concept of linkblogs, briefly, is to post timely articles or links regularly without any commentary (read: little effort). By banding together, we can cast a wider net, and share our common surfing interests. And hopefully spend less time finding, and more time reading.

    If you’re interested in taking part, it’s also a quick & easy way to get started in personal blogging. . . . [more]

    Posted in: Miscellaneous


    You go to law school, you teach for a whole bunch of years, you read a bit of this and that in law and still you’d no idea that:

    163. (1) Every one commits an offence who
    (b) makes, prints, publishes, distributes, sells or has in his possession for the purpose of publication, distribution or circulation a crime comic.

    So says part of the Corrupting Morals section of the Criminal Code. And goodness me, it’s right up there with “obscene phonograph recordings,” “indecent shows” and advertising “instructions…for restoring sexual virility.”

    It’s peculiar that though I’ve read half the crime . . . [more]

    Posted in: Miscellaneous

    “My Name Is Connie, and I Will Be Your Librarian for the Next 10 Months…”

    Articling students arrived en masse today in Toronto Bay Street firms. Upon arrival, they were immediately sequestered into training and orientation sessions to bring them up to speed with technology, practices and procedures in the firms. Every firm library staff have their own methods and madness for easing students into their new research roles.

    Probably for the first time ever we are seeing an extremely tech-savvy group of students. They blog, they use chat rooms, and they don’t really need to be shown how to use e-mail (but it will be shown to them anyway, no doubt!). It will be . . . [more]

    Posted in: Miscellaneous