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Archive for October, 2007

Supreme Court of Canada Client Satisfaction Survey

The Supreme Court of Canada has published an executive summary of a client satisfaction survey of recent Registry Branch customers. The Registry Branch is the administrative arm of the Court.

The survey was done in the spring of 2007 by the firm Phase 5.

299 counsel, agents and self-represented litigants who had appeared before the Supreme Court of Canada in 2006 were invited to participate in an online survey. The response rate was 60%.


  • Information related to appeals was the most commonly accessed service area by respondents (93%), followed by information related to applications for leave to appeal (85%),
. . . [more]
Posted in: Substantive Law

Canadian Lawyer Magazine – “Associates” Magazine

Today’s Bar Talk in The Globe & Mail suggests that the Canadian Lawyer Magazine is soon to formally launch its new magazine aimed at Associates (and to be called by the same name?). So far, there only appears to be “blog-like” postings on the website and it is not clear to me when the formal magazine launch will take place. Since most of the large Toronto law firms are doing student recruitment interviews next week, I thought the posting on the “Google Effect” by Donalee Moulton was timely – as per one of the persons quoted in that . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Publishing

Nino Scalia Meets Bullitt

Fast car chases are a staple of every action film ((I leave it to the dweebs to debate whether Bullitt, French Connection or Ronin takes the medal.)) What is unusual is for the US Supreme Court to be confronted with such a clip. If this doesn’t work, try Youtube 1 and Youtube 2

The case was Scott v. Harris

All but one of the nine justices viewed the tape of the chase before the hearing, and they were entranced by it, discussing it for most of the hearing. Most of the court seemed attracted to the plaintiff’s claim he . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Technology

New Humanities Research Network


The Social Science Research Network (SSRN) is pleased to announce the creation of the Humanities Research Network (HRN). HRN will provide a world-wide, online community for research in all areas of Humanities, following the model of the other subject matter networks within SSRN (

We expect HRN to become a comprehensive online resource for research in humanities, providing scholars with access to current work in their field and facilitating research and scholarship.

At the outset HRN will have networks for classics, English & American literature, and philosophy. Naturally, in each of these subnets there’s a place for law:

  • Classics
. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Libraries & Research

Veropedia Launched

Wikipedia has been both celebrated and panned on these pages. Its strength is that anyone can edit it, meaning there are thousands of people out there to improve every article. Its weakness, of course, is that anyone can edit it.

A new site called Veropedia has recently launched. Its goal is to collect the best that Wikipedia has to offer and save it in a stable, quality-controlled version that can no longer be edited by anyone except Veropedia staff. Articles about which there no longer appears to be any controversy on Wikipedia (that is, they’re no longer marked for . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Libraries & Research

Kline Strong – Death of a Legal Pioneer

Few lawyers in Canada – I except the wonderful Milt Zwicker – will remember the name of Kline D. Strong who died at the weekend. But he transformed the practice of law in North America.

Kline Duncan Strong 1927 ~ 2007 Kline was born January 23, 1927, in Driggs, Idaho He tried to impress upon his family that you’ve never really experienced work until you’ve hoed sugar beets. His professional education included a CPA/MBA from Northwestern University, a law degree from the University of Colorado and he was the first person to obtain a Ph.D in law office management. He . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: Law Schools, Miscellaneous, Practice of Law, Technology

Jurisdictional Details

I’ll tie this to the privacy, law enforcement, and copyright disputes grab bag topic cluster to justify linking to these recent cool developments of the “geographic web”:

3D WorldViewer Everyscape Launches

Everyscape is a new service that takes 2D photos and 3D-fies them to create an immersive street-side experience

EveryScape Takes Streetview Indoors

On the face of it, their service is exactly the same as Google Streetview. EveryScape has driven around each of the cities creating full 360 degree panoramas. However, there’s one key twist — anyone can contribute. Contributions will help them go beyond other services and capture indoors

. . . [more]
Posted in: Substantive Law, Technology

Stephen Fry Talks Dork

The marvelous English actor Stephen Fry (Oscar Wilde, Jeeves and Wooster, etc. etc. and the impending ITV series about a solicitor, Kingdom) has a new column for the Guardian Weekend all about his obsession with gadgets and things techie. The first column, “Welcome to dork talk“, sets the table for what is bound to be a run of highly entertaining — and knowledgeable — columns on thing that might well interest more than one reader of Slaw. Fry says:

…[W]hat kind of devices might I be discussing over the coming weeks? Including, but not confined to: mobile

. . . [more]
Posted in: Technology

8th International Law via the Internet Conference: Take-Away Thoughts

Last week I was fortunate to attend the international conference Law Via the Internet held in Montreal, hosted by the good folks at LexUM who bring us our CanLII system.

Law Via the Internet coincides with the annual meeting of the Legal Information Institutes (or LIIs) from around the world.

Here are some of my take-away thoughts from the conference:

  • free public access to law is key to helping developing countries eliminate poverty. Simply put, making the law accessible allows lawyers in a country do their job representing people, helping fight for people’s rights. Furthermore, organizations wanting to financially support
. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Legislation

Wiki Wha Hae – the Scots Are Here

Today’s Glasgow Herald reports on a new service called CaseCheck, which is built on an open source blog platform. The service sprang from an innovative on-line dispute resolution service.

CaseCheck is a free online archive of decisions by the Scottish courts and industrial appeals tribunals launched on October 1. What makes it unique is the ability of readers to annotate the summary report of each decision, commenting on utility and coherence ((Family lawyers in Canada will remember that this was the service that the late J.G. MacLeod of UWO performed as he edited the RFLs)).

The next step is

. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Technology


Mind42 (“for two” — the notion being collaboration) is an online mindmapping tool that manages to capture pretty much the best of all the features of mindmapping. You can create any number of child or sibling nodes, move them around by simply dragging them, attach files and notes to them, use images for node text, and set up chat channels associated with nodes. When you’re done, you can share your map with a few or many. Or, as I’ve done below, embed it in your webpage via an iframe:

You can also export it to Freemind, Mindmanager and RTF (although . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology

A Discordant Takedown

Almost two weeks ago the International Music Score Library Project (IMSLP), a volunteer-run wiki administered and housed in Edmonton, received a takedown notice from Aird & Berlis LLP acting for Universal Edition AG, the publisher of works by Bartok, Mahler, Schoenberg among others. The letter referred to the fact that some of the 15000 scores available on IMSLP were still under European copyright, though they were now in the public domain here in Canada. In Europe copyright persists for 70 years after the death of the composer; in Canada the post-mortem period is 50 years.

Care had been taken to . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law