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The Friday Fillip

Oyez, oyez! and listen up! because you ain’t heard nothin’ yet.

What with radio and iPods and elevators our ears are almost always full of music (and then there’s that stuff that gets played at supermarkets). And the music is typically mainstream. But there’s a lot of nifty different sound out there and I’ve got a source today for some sounds that are anything but programmed.

framework is a site streaming out of the Netherlands that plays long stretches of recordings made in ordinary public places and mixed into interesting soundscapes — “field recording; contextual and decontextualized sound activity” as . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Opportunity to Discuss Forthcoming Copyright Bill With Minister Prentice Tomorrow

I received a message from a library discussion list this morning informing readers of an open house and call-in event at Minister Prentice’s constituency office tomorrow, Saturday December 8. The message notes that rumours are that the forthcoming copyright bill will resemble the US DMCA in some controversial respects. More information about the open house and call-in is available here. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Substantive Law

Canadian Law Blogs List

Steve Matthews, the brain behind Stem Legal and, has revivified his original list of Canadian blawgs by giving it a home of its own as the Canadian Law Blogs List. This is brilliant.

The only thing that’s needed now, Steve, is the RSS links for each, and the ability to mix a feed of our choosing right there on the site, and….

When you have time, that is. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Technology: Internet

December 6, 1917

Today is the 90th Anniversary of the Halifax Explosion, as it has become commonly known, although in looking for material for this post, I discovered that it was referred to as the Halifax Disaster at the time. The largest man made explosion in history, prior to Hiroshima. As with most things some legal material sprung up around the explosion. The most interesting case being, R. v. Mackey (1918), 52 N.S.R. 165 (S.C.) On March 15 it was determined that the caption (nee captain) of the Mont Blanc was to be released on bail, opposed by the crown, while awaiting . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Equal Justice Initiative of Alabama

A post in Law Librarian Blog this morning, Cruel and Unusual: Sentencing 13- and 14-Year-Old Children to Die in Prison, led me to the Equal Justice Initiative of Alabama, the group that wrote the report on children in U.S. prisons [PDF]. From their “About” page:

The Equal Justice Initiative of Alabama is a private, nonprofit organization that provides legal representation to indigent defendants and prisoners who have been denied fair and just treatment in the legal system.

We litigate on behalf of condemned prisoners, juvenile offenders, people wrongly convicted or charged with violent crimes, poor people denied effective representation,

. . . [more]
Posted in: Substantive Law

Industrial Design Database

There’s now an industrial design database on the Canadian Intellectual Property Office website. The database goes back to 1861, seemingly, and contains all the designs registered, and so protected, under the Industrial Design Act. Industrial design protection is something like a copyright, but flowing out of the shape of an object rather than, say, a writing or a work of art; the definition section says it better:

“design” or “industrial design” means features of shape, configuration, pattern or ornament and any combination of those features that, in a finished article, appeal to and are judged solely by the eye;

. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information

Be Smart at Holiday Parties!

The end of the year is fast approaching and many offices will be throwing holiday parties, either in-house or in restaurants, clubs or bars.

It is also the season of many questions about drunkenness, sexual harassment, liability and many other touchy topics.

A few texts with useful reminders:

  • Serving Smart at Holiday Parties (Ogilvy Renault): ” ‘The liability risks of holding staff parties are a big concern for employers this time of year. They need to be responsible, inclusive and aware,’ says David Bannon, a partner in Ogilvy Renault’s Employment and Labour Law practice. ‘Companies can be liable if an
. . . [more]
Posted in: Miscellaneous

Harvey Strossberg Essay Prize

Announcing the 2008 Harvey T. Strosberg Essay Prize Competition

Harvey T. Strosberg, Q.C., Editor-in-Chief of the Canadian Class Action Review and Irwin Law Inc. are pleased to announce the fifth annual Harvey T. Strosberg Essay Prize competition. The prize of $10,000 is awarded to an outstanding student paper on Canadian class actions.

The competition is open to all Canadian students enrolled in an undergraduate, graduate, or professional program. The deadline for submissions is March 1, 2008.

For more details see . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training, Miscellaneous

Wikipedia Contributors to Be Paid

There are reports today that Wikipedia is about to start paying contributors for certain content. This represents a break from their roots as an all-volunteer project. The program, funded by a single donation right now, aims to improve the quality of the illustrations on the site – that’s currently the only thing they have plans to pay people for.

I’ve always found Wikipedia a good place to go for images, and have never felt a lack of good illustrations to be a shortcoming, but I’m for anything that could improve the site.

In other Wikipedia news, more schools have jumped . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Libraries & Research

No Chumby for Us

There’ll be no Chumbies in Canada, we’re told. I’m not sure if that’s a sad thing or not. This USD180 retro tube, which is about the size of an old fashioned alarm clock, is an always on, content-constrained iPod Touch, connecting like it’s sleek sister through wifi, but unlike her only pulling in certain “channels” from the internet. This reminds me of the mini TV’s that you’d see (in the movies, okay?) in people’s kitchens back in the 60’s: always on: nothing much on.

Are you (a) sad? (b) indignant? (c) indifferent? (d) faintly pleased? (e) none of the above? . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology

Khadr’s Counsel Is Times’ “Lawyer of the Week”

William Kuebler is featured as the Times Online’s Lawyer of the Week. The U.S. Navy Lieutenant Commander says of the situation facing his client, Canadian Omar Khadr, the first child ever to be prosecuted for war crimes:

[It is] a system where the deck is stacked heavily against him. The rules can change from day to day and, under the view of the Government of the United States, even if acquitted, our client could be detained indefinitely as an enemy combatant. We have to avoid enabling an illegitimate process and to keep our sights focused on creating the circumstances

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