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Archive for October, 2008

Your Seat Is Waiting! New Business Conferences Starting Online Now

Opportunities for learning and professional development are quickly expanding as it becomes easier for everyone to develop and add their own content to the Internet.

Earlier this week Mitch Joel, President of marketing firm Twist Image, put together Pixelated, a free full-day online conference with some of the world’s leading speakers on the topic of how business is changing including Sir Ken Robinson, Seth Godin, Chris Anderson, Avinash Kaushik, Chris Brogan and many more. What is incredible is it is all freely available video from around the web, and he has posted it to his blog.

His . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: CLE/PD

Law on Dumpster Diving

I spent some time in September at the local landfill depositing the post modern garage sale furniture that used to furnish my world. This post from The Court caught my eye due to it’s engaging title.

An important issue in the case is the way that the privacy interest over Patrick’s garbage is characterized. The trial judge characterized the interest as informational in nature: the contents of one’s garbage may tend to reveal intimate details of one’s personal life choices. On appeal, however, the interest was characterized as territorial:
Patrick has a privacy interest in objects left in opaque plastic

. . . [more]
Posted in: Miscellaneous

The Tide Is Turning for LPO (At Least in the USA).

I had everything planned for this week’s column. But, as with many things in life, you can’t always plan for the unexpected. So, since my last column, there have been two very significant events that have taken place in the US with regard to the legal process outsourcing (“LPO”) industry. This week’s column is dedicated to those events.

Significant event number 1…..

Previously, the Bar committees in New York City, San Diego County, and Los Angeles County have ruled, that US lawyers may outsource legal work to foreign lawyers (or non-lawyers) outside the US, provided the US lawyer (a) supervises . . . [more]

Posted in: Outsourcing

Google RSS on the Way. My Wishlist…

Search Engine Land confirmed yesterday that RSS feeds for search results are on their way to Google.

Interesting? Yes, but after a bit of thought, I’m lowering my expectations. There’s no way to be know if these concerns will ever come about, but let me document them anyway:

  • Drinking from the Firehose? – If, as expected, this works similar to blog search RSS, the amount of content could be huge. Putting up tighter filters may help, ie. searching in quotes, longer search phrases, more specific search terms; but the web is a big place…
  • Content I Want? – Blog search
. . . [more]
Posted in: Technology

Driving Lawyers to Drink


A culture of long hours and stress are driving increasing numbers of lawyers to drink and drugs, both within and outside the workplace.

Times Online has a piece, “Long hours and stress drive lawyers to drink and drugs,” on a survey published this week by Legal Business, that shows alcohol and drug abuse to be “endemic” among lawyers in big, City firms. One unfortunate soul, a partner in a big London firm, claims to have spent £100,000 on cocaine in a year “and nobody noticed.”

As the stress caused by the financial collapse works its way . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law

Electronic Casebooks

Robert Ambrogi has a post over on Legal Blog Watch about a conference at Seattle University School of Law on the digital future of legal casebooks. It seems that the situation in the U.S. is no different from that here: publishers and academics are unclear about what they want in a casebook, though both (some academics, certainly) perceive that electronic casebooks are the way to go.

One upshot appears to be that CALI and Gene Koo will organize a group to build and use an e-casebook on cyberlaw. There is, of course, a certain “rightness” about a course in . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training, Legal Information: Publishing, Technology

Wikis and KM at Law Firms

Bill Ives has a couple of posts on the use of wikis for knowledge management at law firms on his blog, Portals and KM.

In Wikis in Knowledge Management at Law Firms – Part One: ThoughtFarmer Example he reports on a discussion at a recent event in Boston, where two examples were discussed. The first was of a Canadian firm (unnamed) where the KM and IT people had set up Domino wikis (i.e. inside the firewall) for the various practice groups. The result was that they created silos of information. As a solution they turned to ThoughtFarmer. After . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Information Management, Technology

Encrypting Personal Information

The states of Nevada and now Massachusetts require that holders of personal information must encrypt that information. Nevada imposes this requirement on businesses with respect to some kinds of information — names associated with social security numbers or various other kinds of access codes. Massachusetts imposes the requirement on everybody and applies it to storage on mobile devices and transmission through open networks.

A memo by the Chicago firm of Wildman Harrold describes both laws and gives citations.

Do we need this kind of rule in Canada? PIPEDA and its provincial counterparts require holders of personal information to keep it . . . [more]

Posted in: Administration of Slaw, Substantive Law, Technology, ulc_ecomm_list

IT Infrastructure – Think Disaster Prevention, Not Disaster Recovery

That was the message delivered last night by Steve Spencer of Digital Fortress Corporation at the monthly Internetwork meeting.

He makes a good point. Many people think about disaster recovery when dealing with business continuity plans. That is the wrong focus, as recovering from a disaster has a huge cost in terms of lost customer service, idle staff time, and and hits to productivity and customer relations.

When it comes to IT infrastructure – ie the servers and systems that run a business – the better approach is to think about disaster prevention. In other words, consider the possible things . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

New Proposed Apology Legislation in Ontario

Just over a month ago I said right here on Slaw,

government officials should also review legislation relating to liability of public apologies so that responsible companies like Maple Leaf are not penalized in the process.

It seems someone was paying attention.

A new proposed law would address this issue. The Ministry of the Attorney General of Ontario said in a release today,

The Apology Act would, if passed:

  • Allow individuals and organizations, such as hospitals and other public institutions, to apologize for an accident or wrongdoing, without it being used as evidence of liability in a civil
. . . [more]
Posted in: Substantive Law

Gary P. Rodrigues

Readers will have already noticed that Slaw now counts Gary P. Rodrigues among its regular contributors; but we are proud to announce it, even if we’re a little late in doing so.

Gary was the senior publishing executive at both Carswell and Lexis Nexis during the periods of their greatest expansion and development and was, in effect, the architect of their current print and online publishing programs. As well, he is a former President of the Canadian Publishers Council and a former CoChair of Access Copyright when it was known as Cancopy. From time to time, he has served as . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous