Canada’s online legal magazine.

The Formal-to-Informal Rule of Lawyer Web Publishing

One of the more interesting transitions the web has brought to legal marketing communication is the greater acceptance of informal lawyer commentary. Where formal business writing and legal analysis were once considered the only output for marketing materials, the advent of blogging, and now micro-blogging (i.e. Twitter), has allowed lawyers to create more approachable online personas and to simplify legal writing in a way that appeals to a wider demographic of readers.

This trend of informal communication, while liberating in many respects, doesn’t come without a few pitfalls. One that has become more evident recently, occurs with the automated routing . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing

Cameron Inquiry Report Addresses Testing for Breast Cancer

I wanted to make sure we didn’t overlook this item, even though it was prominent in the news this week.

On Tuesday, March 3rd the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador released the report from the Commission of Inquiry on Hormone Receptor Testing exploring how testing failed to give correct results for women facing breast cancer in Newfoundland over a number of years, and providing a number of recommendations to prevent the same from happening again.

The Commission was established by the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador under its Public Inquiries Act, 2006 on July 3, 2007. The Honourable Margaret A. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Practice of Law, Substantive Law

The Friday Fillip

About two years ago there was a contest on Slaw to see who could come up with the best collective noun for, well, a legion, a conspiracy, a bombast, an argument, etc. of lawyers. I thought we might revisit the broader topic of collective nouns this Friday, and as a resource to help you follow along you might want to open another couple of tabs in your browser to these two sites (one, two) that have improbably long lists of collectives.

I’m resisting the temptation to delve into the history and origin of the whole business of . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

A Disturbing Trend…

♫ They used to tell me
I was building a dream.
And so I followed the mob

Brother, can you spare a dime? ♫

Lyrics by Yip Harburg and music by: Jay Gorney.

There is one magical quality of a picture – it can convey information in a manner that drives home a point faster than text could ever hope to do.

Accordingly it is one thing to read about the layoffs in the legal profession in a serial fashion in the news – it is entirely another to see that same information graphed and displayed in living . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

New CanLII Legislation System

The CanLII blog announced that their new legislation system is now live. It is not a Friday.

The main improvements introduced by this new approach are:

* Versions of statutes and regulations reflect real changes;
* Legislative updates are carried out on a weekly basis;
* Versions’ dates correspond to legislative changes, such as entry into force, amendment or repeal;
* You can search a legislative text as it was legally binding on a particular date in the past. Historical coverage is approximately five years;
* You can compare two different versions of a particular document;
* You can

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

2009-2011 CALL Election Results

Current CALL President Anne Matthewman announced (via CALL-L) the election results for the 2009-2011 Executive Board on Wednesday. Those were:

  • President: Rosalie Fox
  • Past President: Anne Matthewman
  • Vice-President: Cynthia Murphy
  • Treasurer: Sandra Wilkins
  • Secretary: Ann Marie Melvie
  • Member-at-Large: Susan Jones
  • Member-at-Large: Gregory Wurzer

A big Slaw congratulations to each of you serving on the new Board! . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information

New Minimum Wage in Alberta

As of April 1, 2009, Alberta’s minimum wage will increase to $8.80 per hour from the current $8.40.

What about the rest of the country? The Alberta government news release backgrounder gives all the details, including where provinces fall in the minimum wage comparison after July 1, 2009.

Alberta’s minimum wage as of April 1, 2009

1st Ontario* $9.50
2nd Alberta** $8.80
3rd(tied) Saskatchewan $8.60
3rd(tied) Nova Scotia** $8.60
5th (tied) Newfoundland and Labrador $8.50
5th (tied) Quebec $8.50
5th (tied) Manitoba $8.50
8th (tied) British Columbia $8.00
8th (tied) Prince Edward Island $8.00
10th New Brunswick $7.75

Alberta’s minimum . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information

Legal IT 3.0 – April 20 & 21, 2009

Legal IT 3.0 is coming up on April 20 & 21 in Montreal. Dominic Jaar is once again heading up the organizing committee and has put the program together along with Xavier Beauchamp-Tremblay.

It is the largest and the most important event of the year in Canada on information technology for law. Dozens of experts from Canada and internationally (United States, France and Australia), including the keynote speaker Ronald J. Deibert, director of the Citizen Lab, will be there. You will also see some Slaw folk speaking including Simon Chester, Steve Matthews, me, and of . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: CLE/PD, Practice of Law, Substantive Law, Technology

Canada Declines in International ICT Ranking

A few weeks ago Simon Fodden wrote about the “Ontario in the Creative Age” report that basically says we need to turn more to creative work to be successful economically. That builds on the creative class theory that says communities with a higher % of the creative class tend to do better economically.

Especially in light of that, its dissapointing to see that an ITU report that measures the use of information and communications technologies in more than 150 countries dropped Canada from 9th in 2002 to 19th in 2007.

Michael Geist comments that:

No country in the top 50 . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous