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Archive for October, 2006

Popular Song Lyrics in Legal Writing

The Law Librarian Blog today mentioned an entertaining pre-print about persuasive legal writing. It is by Oklahoma City University School of Law professor Alex B. Long and is entitled [Insert Song Lyrics Here]: The Uses and Misuses of Popular Music Lyrics in Legal Writing.

From the abstract:

“Legal writers frequently utilize the lyrics of popular music artists to help advance a particular theme or argument in legal writing. And if the music we listen to says something about us as individuals, then the music we, the legal profession as a whole, write about may something about who we are

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Posted in: Miscellaneous

Caselaw on Wikipedia

This is probably common knowledge to many, but recently I could not remember the leading case by Lord Denning on promissory estoppel. It is of course Central London Property Trust v. High Trees House [1947] KB 130 130. So I searched Wikipedia and found a great entry for Lord Denning, links to a wikipedia entry and the full-text of some of his judgments, including High Trees. I was curious and searched for “leading cases” and found an entry for landmark decisions which I found very good. Although largely American oriented, so of limited use in Canada, there were . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

New Decision on Recovery of Costs for Computerized Research

Since these cases are so spasmodic, I thought Slaw folk might want to tuck away an endorsement on an Ontario costs review, in a case called Nelligan v. Fontaine

Computerized research charges were challenged.

The judge said:

[4] The clients object to a disbursement of $359.56 for computer research. The disbursements of $531.36 are modest, and while there is an absence of evidence of the subject of the computer research, I will allow $200.00 as a reasonable amount for computer research as a substantial amount of case law was presented.

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Posted in: Miscellaneous

Copyright and the Draftsperson

The latest issue of the New York Law Journal has an interesting piece on how the law of copyright applies to contracts and other documents drafted within a law firm.

Does contract drafting reach the necessary level of originality? I would have thought that these contracts are essentially collaborative works, given the extent to which one rarely sees someone starting with a blank sheet of paper. Novel clauses keep getting borrowed and reappearing in future contracts.

Does it matter what the status is of the lawyer drafting the contracts? Associates are employees and drafting is within the scope of their

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Posted in: Substantive Law

The UB Law Flood of 2006

Jim Milles has shared a video of his presentation (“slides” and audio) about the flood they experienced at the University at Buffalo Law School in the first week of August, and the emergency measures they undertook to put things back in order. 3,500 books had to be sent out for vacuum freeze drying in an attempt to prevent mould, and fans and dehumidifiers were brought into the library to remove the water. See The UB Law Flood of 2006 on Check This Out! They were fortunate in that this happened when school was not in progress. My favourite line: “I . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Social Software

The lastest newsletter from the UVic e-learning group provides evidence, if any is needed, of the importance of web 2.0 t hinking and technology in higher education.

There is reference to a good article in Educause review, “Web 2.0: A New Wave for Innovation for Teaching and Learning” described as “an interesting survey of many projects and practices built on social software which are leading which are leading to new ways of learning and teaching.

There is also a link to a very useful site at UBC on social software. . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

UK Statute Law Database – Again!!

This is a little late in coming to SLAW, as I have been in at a conference the antipodes, and did not get a chance to post the good news when it came through. The following messahge was posted by a colleague (and came from the Statutory Publications Office) on 21 September:

“We are also pleased to announce that the website as it stands will be launched free of charge to the public once piloting has been completed.
A commercial strategy will still be developed next year, but will primarily be looking at options that concern the commercial reuse of . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Back to the Book

Information technology is being increasingly used to… make books. And now anyone can print them:

…Espresso Book Machine… can print black-and-white text for a 300-page paperback with a four-color cover, and bind it together in three minutes.

So says Jason Epstein, former Random House editorial director, whose new company, On Demand Books, developed the print-on-demand machine. Apparently considered “affordable,” the press will cost “under $100,000.” As the article in says, this will mean that stores such as Kinko’s or Wal-Mart can go into the book-selling business. Great. On a more upbeat note, the New York Public Library will acquire . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Wig Out

Seems that the English judiciary will soon be unwigged. The Lord Chief Justice has begun a consultation that is expected to see all English judges except those in criminal courts wearing plain European-style judicial robes and their own “do” by Christmas time. The Times has the story.

[via Lo-Fi Librarian, who links to a fascinating pdf on the history of legal robes and wigs.]

  . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

TRUSTe v. BBBonline

Dans la mouvance «on va régler la communauté par la communauté», vers la fin des années 90, la fin du millénaire quoi, on a cru à la solution des certifications de sites Internet par des organisations respectables et respectées. Si quelqu’un en doutait, une récente étude, reprise sur le blogue de Wired, est en train d’officialiser le fait qu’il s’agit bien d’une formule qui a vécue. Précisément, une recherche de Ben Edelman, doctorant à Harvard, semble suggérer le manque de fiabilité de certaines organisations et tout particulièrement TRUSTe.

Selon l’article,

“5.4% of Trust-E sites were untrustworthy, while only 2.5%

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Posted in: Miscellaneous

Thanks, Jordan

Sadly, Jordan Furlong’s week as guest blogger is over. As you can tell by the number of comments to Jordan’s posts, his provocative and thoughtful contributions were a hit with Slawyers. Thanks, Jordan, for giving Slaw your insights and your graceful prose. We’ll be returning to your essays again and again to get inspiration (and to pick quarrels) as this blogging carnival of ours rolls along. And now that you’ve got the posting thing down pat, don’t hesitate to give us a piece of your good mind whenever and as often as you feel like it. . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous