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Archive for May, 2010

Four Principles for Mastering the Demands of Work

Sandra’s office was piled high with files, her work-life was spent putting out fires and her dog was feeling so neglected it had taken to chewing the couch.

Jeremy felt like it had been a long time since he had a life. Days and weekends were spent at the office, he’d gained 20 pounds in a year, and his wife had gone on vacation to Mexico with her best friend Gary the hairdresser – again.

Sandra and Jeremy are not alone. These days it seems like the standard answer to “hi, how are you?” has become “busy, and you?” Having . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law

Ignition Interlock Regulations Come to Ontario

After much stalling and anticipation Ontario has finally enacted a formal ignition interlock program designed to relieve some of the burden on our courts caused by massive amounts of impaired driving litigation.

Effective Aug. 3, 2010, persons convicted of a first impaired driving offence that does not cause bodily harm or death will be eligible for reduced licence suspensions if they comply with the regulations of the program — the primary requirement being the installation of an ignition interlock device (essentially a mini-breathalyzer machine attached to the ignition of your vehicle making it impossible to operate the car unless sobriety . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Legislation

The Friday Fillip

Of all the world’s familiar objects few are as recognizable as the red, London double-decker bus. And the prince of these — for there have been variations on a theme here — is the Routemaster pictured below.

Recognizable by its distinctive half cab and by the hop-on-hop-off back door, the Routemaster served London from the mid fifties until December 9, 2005, when the very last of the scarlet behemoths was taken out of service.

London Mayor “Red” Ken Livingstone presided over the demise, but five years later Tory blue Mayor Boris Johnson decided that they were wanted again and so . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

The Postradical Legal Generation

The title of this posting is the title of an article that just appeared on the Chronicle Review website of the The Chronicle of Higher Education.

Call it a more temperate look (more temperate than that of a now retired Canadian law professor – already noted on this forum) at law school education, albeit in the United States rather than Canada.

The focus of the article is the education of the graduates from “elite” law schools in the U.S. “at a time when most of the more-radical members of the faculty had either already disappeared or were losing their . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training, Education & Training: Law Schools, Practice of Law: Future of Practice

Lawyers “Step in It” Through Social Media Incompetence

We often bemoan that lawyers don’t take seriously their duty to understand e-discovery. Today we tackle another subject that attorneys seem to avoid, often to their peril as they step on virtual cow pies. Social media is so pervasive that ignoring its legal implications is (we think) simple incompetence. Now that the active Facebook user population is more than 400 million globally (more than the U.S. population), it is clear that the social media phenomenon is here to stay.

Not only do lawyers need to understand the upsides and downsides of social media for their clients – they need to . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Technology

US Federal Judiciary Gets Its Own YouTube Channel

The U.S. Federal Judiciary launched a radical redesign of its website recently.

As part of the redesign, it even created its own YouTube channel.

Other law-themed YouTube channels I have come across include:

Those are just a few examples of what is out there. . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Legal Information: Publishing

Anthropology at the Office

I learned a lot at the recent CALL/ACBD/MichALL Conference. I am very happy to report (just in case my management team wonders why they send me to these things) that I am putting one of the things I learned into immediate practice.

Susan Gibbons, Vice Provost and Andrew H. & Janet Dayton Neilly Dean at River Campus Libraries at the University of Rochester, gave a plenary presentation on May 11 titled “Avoiding Obsolescence: Understanding and Engaging the Net Generation”. Susan’s talk had several objectives including understanding what the new generation of library users expect from libraries. She discussed . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Libraries & Research

Online Discussion Post-Usenet

An event perhaps long overdue, today May 20, 2010 is the day Duke University will shut down the Internet’s first discussion forum. The “Users Network” or its more recognizable name ‘Usenet’ was started in 1979, and evolved to more than 120,000 newsgroups on almost every subject imaginable.

We could call Usenet the Twitter of yesteryear, and that wouldn’t be too far off. But even as we say good-bye, I see attributes in Usenet that are still somewhat unique. Will we ever see the Internet offer a single source and location of global discussion? It’s not likely.

I also find . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Internet