SCC Website – What’s Next?

A couple of days ago I was at the Supreme Court to discuss potential improvements to the Supreme Court decision website. Some of you probably noticed that over the last year LexUM greatly expanded the scope of decisions available on this site. We now have everything back to 1949, as well as everything from Ontario and BC back to 1876. If everything continues to go according to plan, all of the decisions ever published in the Supreme Court Report will be freely available online before next spring. With content becoming exhaustive, we are now looking to improve the feature set.

To prepare the meeting I drafted a wish list of features we always wanted to implement but that never made it online for all kind of reasons. I am interested to get your thoughts on this list and particularly on any missing feature. I cannot promise that any of them will be implemented on the next version of the website, but at least I can assure you that all ideas will be considered.

  • Structure all case related information under one interface (docket information, data from the bulletins, filings / factums, webcasts, decisions);

  • Cross references between related information of one single case;

  • Links on citations in the body of documents;

  • Links to appeal and first instance decisions available on CanLII;

  • Snippets or keywords displayed in search results;

  • Improved highlights of search results with navigation;

  • Ability to search in Webcasts;

  • RSS feeds (for website updates and also potentially by case);

  • Keywords displayed on updates for the mailing list / RSS / website;

  • Interface for mobile device;

  • Adding all PDFs from the report and making PDFs searchable.

Let me know what you think is missing.

By the way I think this is the first post on Slaw initiated by someone at LexUM. From now on you should see some from time to time as we will try to be more visible on the blogosphere.


  1. Hi Pierre-Paul:

    This is excellent news. I like all of the items you listed, so it is hard to prioritize them.

    I think a number of law libraries would welcome having reliable (and complete) PDFs online, thereby allowing us to free up some shelf-space of the print SCR’s.

    Good work.

  2. A useful feature of the SCRs is not included on the PDFs from about 1985 to the present. Each page of the SCRs indicates the name of the judge who authored that part of the judgment, except where a judgment is authored by the court. It appears as though this is still the practice with the print SCRs, just not the post-1984 PDFs on the SCC website. The UK website has the judges’ names on both html and PDF versions.

  3. One of the discussion related to the PDFs is to make them accessible and authoritative at the same time. That implies replacing all of the post-1984 LexUM generated PDFs by the scan of the report and replacing the current images by an OCRed version. This is one of the priority identified by the court.