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Don’t Even Mention JD

From the land of “Herr Doktor Doktor” via Language Log:

…Ian Thomas Baldwin, who holds a PhD from Cornell, and now serves as researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology in Jena… [had] been accused of “title abuse” by the German police under a little-known Nazi-era law that specifies that only people who hold PhDs or medical degrees from German universities are permitted to be called “Dr.” [But] persons with a PhD from an accredited US institution can now use Dr. in Germany without jeopardy. As I understand this, however, PhDs from Japan, Canada, and other

. . . [more]
Posted in: Education & Training, Miscellaneous

What’s Hot – According to New York Legal Tech

Here is a link to a summary of the attendee survey results from the ALM Legal Tech Conference in January.

Odd that it took this long to compile – at ABA Techshow in 1988, we were doing automated audience surveys, using unbelievably primitive tools, but real-time.

Here is the answer list to one question:

What topics do you see as hot technology issues in 2008?

Electronic Discovery 69%
Online Collaboration 32%
Knowledge Management 36%
Document Management 53%
Disaster Recovery/Business Continuity 29%
Data Security 48%
Other 13% . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous, Practice of Law, Technology

Animal Law Courses Spreading Across Canada

The most recent issue of The Lawyers Weekly features an article entitled Animal law: from the classroom to the real world? that describes the emergence of animal law as a serious field of study and perhaps legal practice:

“If the law schools are any indication, animal law is a growth area. University of Toronto has just become the seventh law school to offer animal law on its curriculum, after McGill, Dalhousie, University of Alberta, University of Ottawa, University of Victoria and Université du Québec à Montréal(…)”

“Just as actually practising environmental law was seen as a pipe dream of law

. . . [more]
Posted in: Education & Training, Legal Information: Libraries & Research

Steve Matthews – CBA National – “Who Do You Think You Are?”

A tip of the SLAW hat to SLAW’s own Steve Matthews for his article called “Who Do You Think You Are?” in this month’s edition of the CBA National magazine. Among other things, Steve writes on protecting your online brand and developing an online network. Nice work Steve. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Publishing, Miscellaneous, Practice of Law

Legislative History — for a Fee

We’ve blogged a couple of times about Carl Malmud’s efforts to provide free access to U.S. cases and other important documents (see: Case Law Just Wants To Be Free and Carl Malmud Publishes Cases). Now Boing Boing reports that Malmud’s efforts to gain access to U.S. federal legislative histories has run into a block in the form of Thomson West. Complied by law librarians at the U.S. Government Accountability Office, the histories have been scanned by Thomson West pursuant to a deal they made with the GAO; and now Thomson West claims an exclusive right to the documents.

Malmud . . . [more]

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

Link Rot Is Alive and Well

I earlier commented on SLAW on the problem of link rot on the web.

I am updating my “Doing Legal Research in Canada” guide on since I believe I last updated it in 2004 and it is out-of-date (my similar guide on NYU’s Globalex site is more current for now than the guide on

As part of updating the guide, I was struck by the fact that easily more than 50% of the links were broken (and for some topics, it was as high as 90%). All within 3 years or so! And the existing links were . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Libraries & Research

Compendium of Personal Injury Damages in Ontario (1999-2005)

A colleague made me aware of an online Compendium of Damages Awarded in Personal Injury Actions Across Ontario (January 1999 – November 2005). It is posted on the website of the County of Carleton Law Association (CCLA) and appears to have been part of a project chaired by Mr. Justice Chadwick, with the help of local lawyers, students and law clerks.

I assume it was aimed at pro se litigants and must have been quite an effort. What I find puzzling though is that most of this data (and I assume more extensive data) is available in Carswell’s Goldsmith’s . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Libraries & Research

Legal Information for Immigrant Brides

We have friends whose marriages have been arranged and who find themselves far from India in new relationships. A new website provides legal information for women in that situation.

A venture of the University of Alberta’s Faculty of Extension, the Legal Resource Centre, the Alberta Law Foundation, and the Changing Together organization the website was launched last month to help educate foreign brides and immigrant women about marital relationships and the law in Canada. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Miscellaneous

Canadian Association of Law Libraries – CALL/ACBD 2008 Conference Early Bird Deadline

May 25-28, 2008

Tomorrow is the early bird deadline for this year’s CALL Conference.

Also, there is a terrific pre-conference workshop, the Law Library Leadership Institute being held Saturday, May 24th that is definitely worth checking out.

If you work in a law library, or are otherwise part of the law library community, I hope you will join me at the CALL conference! . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: CLE/PD, Legal Information

Oxford Handbook of Business History

The Oxford Handbook of Business History, edited by Geoffrey Jones and Jonathan Zeitlin (ISBN13: 9780199263684; 736 pages; U.S.$150) “provides a state-of-the-art survey of research in business history.” A Q&A with one of the authors explains further:

Sean Silverthorne: What is the purpose of the book, and who is the intended audience?

Geoff Jones: The purpose of this book is to provide a state-of-the-art overview of business history research worldwide. It seeks to speak to researchers in management, economics, sociology, and history who want to know about the latest research in business history, as well as to a wider audience

. . . [more]
Posted in: Miscellaneous, Substantive Law

Booklamp Beta

It’s in the very early stages of its development, but I just found a new site called Booklamp, which claims to do for books what (sadly, off limits to us) does for music: recognize patterns in the ones you like and suggest others that you might as well. The FAQ is not available yet to shed some light on how the matching is done, but it seems to employ five criteria: “density”, “pacing”, “action”, “dialogue” and “description”.

There are very few books in the database yet, so it’s more of a novelty than a useful tool, but they . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology