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A Legal Wiki on Legal Wikis

An odd sort of an announcement today about a White Paper on the implications of Web 2.0 for the legal profession, but without any indication how to find the white paper.

Here is the press release:

Collaborative Network Addresses Emerging Legal Issues

2008-06-26 21:58:06 –

– nGenera, together with California law firm Folger, Levin & Kahn, and Legal OnRamp, today announced that they had collaborated to use a wiki tool to author a sophisticated white paper on legal issues presented by new Internet technologies, including wikis themselves. . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law, Technology

ICANN Approves Expansion of Top-Level Domain Names

ICANN, the body which oversees website address naming, today approved a proposal to allow those applying for domain names to self-select top-level domains. Currently there are only 21 top-level domains including common ones such as .com and .org. This new development will open up domain naming. According to the ICANN press release:

This proposal allows applicants for new names to self-select their domain name so that choices are most appropriate for their customers or potentially the most marketable. It is expected that applicants will apply for targeted community strings such as (the existing) .travel for the travel industry and

. . . [more]
Posted in: Substantive Law

Judicial Council Report on Reforms

From the Canadian Judicial Council press release:

The Canadian Judicial Council has released a report on reforms undertaken across Canada to make it easier and more affordable for Canadians to seek justice in the courts. The Chief Justice of Canada, the Right Honourable Beverley McLachlin, who also heads the Council, has identified access to justice as one of the most important challenges facing the justice system today. …

This report, which was undertaken by a sub-committee of the Council’s Administration of Justice Committee, is based on records developed at its request for the new Inventory of Reforms created by

. . . [more]
Posted in: Practice of Law, Substantive Law

Online Collaboration on LiveJournal Results in Book Deal

Havemercy, a book created via online collaboration on LiveJournal between two 21-year-old women in Victoria and New York, is now on sale. This 400-page book, after being written online in only 18 days, caught the attention of a senior editor at Spectra, the science-fiction imprint of Random House’s Bantam Dell Publishing Group. It offered a $30,000 advance to the two authors, and secured world rights to the book in English. And it all started with an online thread between the 2 women, discussing The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.

Article from The Globe and Mail . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Significant High Court Decision on Justiciability of a Referendum on Lisbon Treaty

Stuart Wheeler has lost a High Court case in his bid for a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty.

Two judges rejected the millionaire’s claim that there was a “legitimate expectation” of a public vote. The Beeb summarizes the decision well, the Guardian has the key findings of the case, and Bailii has the entire decision. It has quite a style of cause: The Queen (on the application of Wheeler) v. Office of the Prime Minister, Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs and Speaker of the House of Commons . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Foreign Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

Comment Feature Added to Facebook Mini-Feed

The popular social network platform Facebook today added the ability to comment on items in the “mini-feed” of news in each individual’s profile. Mashable compares this to the functionality of the new platform FriendFeed.

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What do you think about this new feature? Can Facebook continue to add features of other networks, and become everything to everyone? At what point will it become so unfocussed that no one will use it?

Hat tip to David Tallan for catching the story earlier today.

[This blog post is recreation of a post from earlier today that was lost in a technical . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology

Two Clichés to Cut

Keeping clichés out of your writing is not easy. I’m sure that my hasty blog posts are peppered with the pesky things. So I ought to be more generous than I feel towards writers whose wheels slip into the ruts; but at least I keep my tsk-tsks to myself. Nearly always. Except today — when I want to carp about two phrases that have fallen into use. And use. And use.

The two candidates for exile from the language are “send a message” and “going forward” in all their variations.

As do all clichés, I suppose, these hackneyed phrases create . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Lord Black Loses U.S. Appeal

Conrad Black has lost his appeal to have his convictions on fraud and obstruction of justice overturned. You can read the judgment here [PDF].

Congratulations, by the way, to the Globe and Mail for making the actual document available and providing a link. I’d only just complained a few days ago about the lack of links on news media sites to to the actual documents involved in news stories. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Substantive Law

Canadian Judicial Council Releases National Model Practice Direction for E-Docs in Civil Litigation

Last week, the Canadian Judicial Council released its National Model Practice Direction for the Use of Technology in Civil Litigation:

“The Practice Direction provides much-needed guidance to trial judges and lawyers with respect to the best practices for exchanging productions in electronic form, as well as handling paperless trials. Counsel will be encouraged to use a format of exchange which reduces the cost of litigation and improves access to justice.”

“The Practice Direction is accompanied by a Generic Protocol which can be adapted as a checklist and form of agreement between parties to establish a meaningful and simplified exchange

. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information: Information Management, Substantive Law

CanLII Offers Popup Help

I just noticed this morning that CanLII has introduced a help feature. When you mouse into any of the search entry fields, a popup appears with the various options available to you to do a Boolean search dans les deux langues, naturellement. The graphic below shows what comes up when you mouse over the “full text” entry field.

It’s possible that this has been around for a while and I’m the last to find it — if so, I apologize for the stale news. But CanLII has a habit of introducing changes by stealth, so it might indeed be . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Publishing

LLRX Does Gadgets

Here it is again: the LLRX tour d’horizon of gadgetry, “60 Gadgets in 60 Minutes” by Ed Vawter, Barbara Fullerton and Dina Dreifuerst. From the frivolous (marshmallow gun) to the somewhat less frivolous (a Cadillac automobile), the gadget gamut is certain to offer you something that you just can’t live without — even if only for ten seconds, until rational thought kicks in again.

It’s offered as an iPaper set of slides and as a PDF and PowerPoint presentation suitable for downloading and viewing while you let your “sweat analysing shirt” do its work. . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous, Technology