Canada’s online legal magazine.
Solo lawyer start-up guide
LexisNexis Legal Products

The PORTIA Project on Privacy and Technology

I don’t think we’ve mentioned the Yale / Stanford PORTIA Project before on Slaw:

The PORTIA goals are (1) to design and develop a next generation of technology for handling sensitive information that is qualitatively better than the current generation’s and (2) to create an effective conceptual framework for policy making and philosophical inquiry into the rights and responsibilities of data subjects, data owners, and data users.

Much of the material is inaccessible to the average reader because of a high degree of technical material (e.g. On the Implementation of Pairing-Based Cryptosystems or Private Multiparty Sampling and Approximation of Vector . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law, Technology

No Wooden Nickels: Encouraging Millennials to Want the Right Job

What a different world law school would be if Jordan Furlong’s recent column, Millennial Fever was required reading for current law students. While I hold out hope in the accuracy of Furlong’s vision of generational turnover and its resultant culture change in Canadian firms, the balance of power is still largely seen by students to rest in the hands of the employer.

Early November is the time of year when many 2L’s from Ontario law schools are off to interviews (the majority of which seem to be in Toronto), with the hopes of winning a job offer for next summer. . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

One Laptop Per Child: Give One Get One

SLAW has been following the progress of the One Laptop program (formerly the $100 laptop program) since 2005. This program is finally kicking off with a 15 day “Give One Get One” (G1G1) campaign. It started yesterday. For a donation of $399 (not including taxes and shipping) you will receive one of these specially designed computers. One computer will also be given to a child in a develping country. $200 of your donation will be tax deductible (less the approximate value of the computer you will receive).

The computer is designed especially for children and is intended to . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology

The BlackBook of FaceBerry

Hello, my name is Dominic Jaar and I am a crackberry.

I also happen to be a Facebooker, even if I not too active on that front. Nevertheless, on October 24th, I installed the new Facebook application on my Blackberry 8830 to give it a test drive. If you do not want to read through my complaint, let me just tell you that it has been uninstalled… . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology

The Nerd Handbook: Who Me?

The blog Rands in Repose just published a Nerd Handbook, ostensibly aimed at helping someone attached to a nerd understand that nerd. Here the nerd is understood in terms of involvement with a computer.

You could, of course, understand the handbook as applying to lawyers or legal librarians, it seems to me. The fit isn’t perfect (observation 5 doesn’t carry over for lawyers in my experience), but it’s enough to give one pause.

Herewith the topic heads from the handbook, with substitutions suggested where appropriate, and a few quotes under the first heading to give you the flavour:

  1. Understand
. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information, Miscellaneous, Practice of Law

Legal Threats Database Launched


The Citizen Media Law Project (CMLP) today unveiled its new Legal Threats Database (, a catalog of the growing number of lawsuits, cease and desist letters, and other legal challenges faced by those engaging in online speech. This publicly accessible database — already containing hundreds of entries — will provide lawyers, citizen journalists, and mainstream media alike with a valuable resource for assessing the validity and possible outcomes of legal threats to online speech, based on actual cases and legal actions.

Center for Citizen Media Press Release

The Citizen Media Law Project is an affiliate of both Harvard’s Berkman . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Publishing

A Prophylactic for MTDs

The StupidFilter Project: Because the internet needs prophylactics for memetically transmitted diseases.”
*MTDs = Memetically Transmitted Diseases, similar in concept to STDs. After all, communication is a form of intercourse. I haven’t seen this acronym before, so maybe I’ve coined one.
The dictionary (Random House Unabridged) includes these definitions of intercourse.

1. dealings or communication between individuals, groups, countries, etc.
2. interchange of thoughts, feelings, etc.

Those of us old enough (or otherwise informed) will remember the remarkable euphemisim: “criminal conversation”. (It’s related to the third of the definitions.) . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Word Perhect

Click image to enlarge

Because we at Slaw work hard to ensure that you are kept up to date on the latest developments, particularly as far as technology is concerned, it is with great pleasure that we draw your attention to a new online word processor, Word Perhect. It is my consdidered opinion that you will find it a hoot, a riot and generally quite witty. As an extra bonus, there is the fact that it works, more or less.

PS. Be sure to try the food, drink and smoke buttons in the second toolbar.

[via Things Magazine] . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

The Friday Fillip: A Slaw Six

A Slaw 6 – It’s a Draw

Not one thing today, but six, “A Slaw Six,” a new flick of the fillip that I’ll try from time to time.

1. indexed

A blog of witty sketched graphs and Venn diagrams on 5 x 8 index cards.

2. Bob Truby’s Brand Name Pencils

“a visual encounter with the incredibly diverse world of brand name pencils”

3. JetPens

Japanese pens and stationery. (Okay, okay, and pencils too.)

4. (Online) Etch a Sketch

An oldie but a goodie. Draw, rinse, repeat.

5. Road Signs: Children’s hair-dress world-wide

Monsieur Jean – coiffeur – displays . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

The Meaning of Everything, by Everyone

Well, not by everyone, but by the efforts of thousands of people at least. That’s how the giant Oxford English Dicitionary was created, as pretty much everyone knows.

Reading The Meaning of Everything: The Story of the Oxford English Dictionary by Simon Winchester recently, I was struck by a few parallels between then and now — or, rather, between that and this. One thought was that this is a pretty good illustration of the wisdom of crowds, so popular nowadays. Of course, it depends on the crowd you hang with as to how wise the product will turn out to . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous, Technology: Internet

Demonstration Outside Downing Street

The Law Society is calling for lawyers to participate in a demonstration at Downing Street about developments in Pakistan.

Supporting lawyers in Pakistan

Thursday 08 November 2007

The Law Society, the Bar Council, and the Association of Muslim Lawyers have raised strong concerns about the treatment of lawyers in Pakistan following their demonstrations in support of the rule of law. Andrew Holroyd, Law Society president said:

‘Events in Pakistan must be of concern to everyone who supports the rule of law, and they underline once again that the rule of law is nothing without lawyers. I can think of no . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous, Practice of Law

LegalPubs One Week Later

I won’t bombard Slaw readers with a weekly report, but wanted to relay my thanks after a really great first week for LegalPubs. Over the past 7 days, the website has averaged over a hundred visitors a day, and the RSS feed more than 3500 product views. See the stats graphic below:

After some tinkering, I’ve got the new product email alerts working, and have added a mobile version using the same service as Slaw. I’m not sure how many librarians are doing their collection development work on a blackberry, but it was a 15 minute addition, and certainly . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous