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Archive for March, 2006

Finally the Times Notices

The Times Law Page for Tuesday March 28 contains an assessment of where English law firms are on the blogosphere: ‘A blog shows we are not a stuffy, old-style firm.’ Discuss

Not surprisingly English law firms are divided as to the usefulness of the legal blog – a few quotes:

BLOGGING is to public relations what e-mails are to letters and is one of the most important technological innovations for law firmsAndy Havens, a US legal marketing manager.

“If your firm doesn’t have at least one lawyer who is blogging, you look like a firm who, in 1996,

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Posted in: Miscellaneous

Plagiarism Happens to Judges Too

A fascinating post from Australia about a judge who just found it too tempting to copy from another judge’s earlier work.

‘Plagiarist’ magistrate refuses to quitBy Hedley Thomas, 25-03-2006, From: The Courier-Mail

COPYCAT federal magistrate Jennifer Rimmer has rejected a top-level invitation to “take the honourable step” and quit her $220,000 job to save further public embarrassment.

Federal Chief Magistrate John Pascoe asked Ms Rimmer to resign her job-for-life after it was revealed she had copied more than 2000 words from a Victorian colleague’s judgment in a sexual harassment case.
Mr Pascoe, concerned that public confidence in the

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Posted in: Miscellaneous

Fighting Words – Googling To/for Dummies

The NYT has a provocative op-ed today on whether students are being so spoon fed by search engines that they lose their ability to research and think for themselves.

We have to warn articling students about the dangers of Googling, but after a while, they’re back on the engines.

Are we just too trusting about web-based research? . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

The Friday Fillip

As befits a Friday Fillip, this one has the merest connection to the law, let alone to legal research — though somewhat more to IT. The connection is the voice. Law is/was an oral discipline in part and this is all about the marvel of the human voice.

It’s a Honda ad, in which a choir impersonates a car, so to speak. No trivial “zoom-zoom” here. Here we have the full experience. You go to The intro – Discover the New Honda – starts you off, but then you find yourself in a garage. When you get there, click . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

LSAT Thumbprint

From the March issue of the CAUT Bulletin: Canada to Investigate Use of Thumbprint for Law School Test. And Michael Geist in a February article in the Toronto Star.

Personally, I think it is time for a cage match pitting the Patriot Act vs. PIPEDA. And because I’m in a ranting mood, why don’t we start giving our acts catchy stage names? Think of the possibilities, PIPEDA could be the Beaver Libertarian Act. The Criminal Code could be the Evildoers Disincentive Act, you get the idea. I’m sure we can come up with lots of catchy names that will get . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Continuous Partial Attention

One of my IT colleagues, who freely admits that he does not carry a Blackberry because of its addictive nature — even in the evenings when with family, brought to my attention a Newsweek article that recaps a presentation by Linda Stone, a former Apple and Microsoft executive, on the social implications of a syndrome she calls continuous partial attention. At a technology conference who’s theme was The Attention Economy, where speakers were reportedly competing with laptops and Blackberries for their audience’s attention, this speaker apparently struck a nerve.

The article says:

Stone first noticed the syndrome a decade

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Posted in: Miscellaneous

Librarian Doe

Revisions to the U.S. Patriot Act still don’t adequately protect the rights of American librarians and readers of library materials. As set out in the New York Times story today, under the original version of the legislation:

[a] Connecticut librarian …was visited by the Federal Bureau of Investigation last year and presented with what is known as a national security letter demanding patron records.

The subpoena, issued as part of a counterterrorism investigation, not only barred him from disclosing the target of the inquiry, but also forbade him and others at his place of work to ever discuss the letter

. . . [more]
Posted in: Miscellaneous