Canada’s online legal magazine.

UN Database on Violence Against Women

In 2006, the United Nations General Assembly called on the Secretary-General of the organization to establish a database on the nature and consequences of violence against women, and on the impact and effectiveness of policies and programmes to combat it.

The database was launched last week.

There are a number of ways to search the data:

  • Country pages
  • Advanced search (type of government or policy measure; form of violence; country/region; year; and keyword)
  • Good practices

Sources for the information include:

  • States parties’ reports to human rights treaty bodies
  • Information provided by Member States in follow-up to the Fourth World
. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information, Substantive Law

Proposed New Law Admission Test From Berkeley Profs

Berkeley professors Marjorie M. Shultz (law) and Sheldon Zedeck (psychology) released a report last September, only now picked up on by the New York Times, that releases the results of a study done with a newly devised law school admission test and that recommends that this line of inquiry be pursued on a larger scale, with an eye to replacing the standard LSAT.

Motivated in large part by the recent striking down of reverse discrimination laws and practices in the California and the consequent reduction in the numbers of Black and Hispanic law students in that state, as well . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training


A couple of years ago I posted about IBM’s Many Eyes, a place to turn your datasets into graphs, charts and other ways to make their meanings visible. Timetric is another site/web-app enabling you to display your series of data in useful charts etc. It’s set up such that you can embed the graphic results of your work in a blog or web page and have them updated as your data is updated. Of course, to do that you have to upload your data to Timetric, as with the IBM site, and embed their display of it. But for . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology

Public Forum on Copyright Issues

Our readers may be interested in an event in Toronto next week. I got a flyer in my mailbox from Olivia Chow, the MP for my riding, advertising a public forum on “how to build a vibrant online arts presence while ensuring fairness for both artists and users.”

The speakers are Charlie Angus (the NDP’s “digital affairs critic”), Michael Geist, Don Quarles, Stephen Waddell and Victoria Owen. It’s scheduled to take place next Wednesday, March 18 at 7 p.m. at the University of Toronto.

See the Flyer . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law

Peers Question British Surveillance

That’s the title of my newspaper column this week. It talks about a House of Lords report that expresses concern over the U.K.’s extensive closed-circuit television (CCTV) surveillance network and its growing national DNA database, which contains information even about innocent people.

While the report does not go so far as to say that the U.K. has become an Orwellian state, it does say that “the expansion in the use of surveillance represents one of the most significant changes in the life of the nation since the end of the Second World War.”

I can’t reporoduce the article here for . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

New International Arbitration Blog From Kluwer

Started in January, the Kluwer Arbitration Blog is from Kluwer Law International. They have pulled together a range of contributors from practice, academia and legal publishing for this focused cooperative blog. From one of their first posts:

The international arbitration world is a unique epistemic community. We come from every corner of the globe and yet we all deeply care about the same issues. We number in the thousands and yet there is a remarkable degree of collegiality among our members. The arbitration world is marked by an astonishing variety of individuals who share the common attributes of cosmopolitanism,

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

Three Great Conferences…

♫ Rise up this mornin,
Smiled with the risin sun,
Three little birds
Pitch by my doorstep
Singin sweet songs
Of melodies pure and true,
Sayin, (this is my message to you-ou-ou:)

Singin: dont worry bout a thing,
cause every little thing gonna be all right…♫

Music and lyrics by Bob Marley, recorded by Bob Marley & The Wailers

This year there are three great conferences on legal technology that one can attend. In order of time, the first is:

ABA TECHSHOW, held in Chicago April 2-4, 2009.

Close on the heels of Techshow is LegalIT in Montreal on April . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

New Look for the Canadian Bar Association

I was on the CBA website today and noticed they have changed their look. According to the press release, the new logo was formally launched at the Mid-Winter Meeting on February 21st, and the new website look was rolled out on February 23rd. In the March 2009 issue of CBA’s National magazine (page 44), it explains:

A new brand strategy, complete with a revamped CBA logo, branding compaign and refocused strategy, was unveiled by CBA President Guy Joubert of Winnipeg.

Developed under the guidance of a Brand Advisory Group that reported to the CBA’s Membership and Communications committees, the

. . . [more]
Posted in: Uncategorized

One to Watch?

An item in yesterday’s Bits (“Better Search Doesn’t Mean Beating Google” NY Times – Technology) talked about a search engine that promises to do things differently. Wolfram|Alpha, the creation of mathematician Stephen Wolfram due out in May of this year, has been much ballyhooed as using “a mixture of many clever algorithms and heuristics, lots of linguistic discovery and linguistic curation” ((Wolfram Blog)) to provide answers to your questions, rather than lists of websites that relate in some fashion to your search terms.

Apparently, Wolfram has been making strong claims for the novelty and ingenuity . . . [more]

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

Electronically Manufactured Law – What’s Changed and Why Does It Matter?

Here is a link to a thoughtful article in the Harvard Journal of Law & Technology by Hofstra Professor Katrina Fischer Kuh entitled Electronically Manufactured Law – Why the shift to electronic research merits attention.

It seeks to understand how present and future changes in the communication of law, including electronic legal research, influence the legal profession and legal practice. It explores how the shift to electronic research is likely shaping the law in little-noticed, but nonetheless significant, ways. . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training, Legal Information, Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Substantive Law, Technology

Ontario Law Foundation to Fund Rural Legal Information Fellowships

A year ago, we mentioned that the Law Foundation of Ontario had launched a project on access to legal information and legal services by linguistic minorities and persons living in rural or remote areas. It focussed on access to two components (legal information and legal services) by two groups who can face isolation in our communities (linguistic minorities and persons in rural or remote areas). We should have updated that report to note George Thomson’s report issued in January, and the creation of a website on the topic.

It discusses the digital divide in terms of rural access . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Miscellaneous

Farewell to a Pioneer

This morning’s Globe and Mail carried a death notice for Alison Youngman, who spearheaded Stikeman’s Technology and Outsourcing group, dead of cancer at too early an age.

She promoted the adoption of new technologies before it was fashionable to do so. She became a self-taught expert on technology law, creating a nationally recognized Technology and Outsourcing group for Stikemans. She published widely and served her profession by co-chairing the American Bar Association Negotiated Acquisitions Committee Task Force on Joint Ventures.

She was part of the OBA’s Business Law Section on the Modernization of Business Law in Ontario . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous, Practice of Law, Substantive Law