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Archive for October, 2011

Lessons in Disruption From Steve Jobs

Ten years ago, when we had our first child, my wife and I bought a $1,000 video camera that had many features. One of these features was an infrared capability that allowed us to take videos of our sleeping child at night. We used the feature once and then we never looked at it again. Today, with our third child, our video camera sits on the shelf gathering dust and we use our iPhone to take videos.

The iPhone camera app does not have a fraction of the features of our video camera but it is convenient to use and . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law

Articling and Access to Justice: An Ontario Legal Corps – Why Not?

We need to create an Ontario Legal Corps composed of lawyers and articling students to address the access to justice crisis in this province and we need to do it now. An Ontario Legal Corps will also go a long way to addressing the current deficit in available articling positions.

The articling crisis in Ontario is a supply-side program. It deals with the issue of the scarcity of supply of articling positions. As many judges and now the Governor General have reminded us, we have an Access to Justice crisis which is a demand side problem. The demand for legal . . . [more]

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

“Rumour About You” Twitter Hack Attempt

Beware of “rumor about you” DM that is Twitter account hijack exploit

Earlier this afternoon I received the following message from a lawyer I know: “There is a rumor/blog going around about you http://tdotco/abcdefg might want to read it” (TLD is and other part of the URL is s1bYMHV).

If you click on this link and successfully load this site, it sends this message to all your followers. It is currently circulating among Canadian lawyers. Beware and don’t get fooled. . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology: Internet

Inmagic’s Special Library Products and InMagic Brand Purchased by SydneyPLUS

No doubt many libraries in our community have already heard the news: SydneyPLUS has just purchased a big piece of the Inmagic pie. This includes Inmagic’s DB/Text Library Suite of products: DB/TextWorks, DB/Text WebPublisher Pro, and Inmagic Genie.

According to Kathy Bryce via Andornot’s blog:

The move will strengthen both SydneyPLUS and the new Inmagic division by bringing together complementary technologies to meet the needs of special librarians, while allowing Inmagic, Inc. to focus on new markets.

Inmagic, Inc. (the company) will retain its Presto technology and its related products PrestoKnowledgeNetPresto AssociatioNet, . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Information Management, Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Technology: Office Technology

Bills on Today’s Agenda vs Newspaper Reports

I like to know things first. It’s a character flaw that is exacerbated by a desire to place the libraries first in the minds of my firm’s lawyers for being the source of current information. With all the technology available for learning things, it should be easy to learn what you need to know. Lately though, I find myself stymied in my desire to know things first.

Today is a good example. Being from an Alberta farming background and growing up with my great grandfather’s shotgun stored in my closet (unloaded of course), I thought I would write about the . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Legislation

Service via Facebook in Quebec

Already the subject of Slaw posts in the past with regard to different jurisdictions (see here and here), it is now Quebec’s turn to recognize service via Facebook after the Court of Quebec authorized this past summer a plaintiff to serve its motion to institute proceedings via this social network ing site.

In Boivin & Associés c. Scott, 2011 QCCQ 10324 (CanLII), the plaintiff submitted evidence that it had made every effort possible to serve the defendant by traditional means, but to no avail. Indeed, the defendant had no known address in Quebec and her last known address . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions, Technology

Dodek & Wright on the McLachlin Court

Public Law at the McLachlin Court: the First Decade, co-edited by David A. Wright and Adam Dodek, Ottawa law prof and brand new blogger at Slaw, has just been published by Irwin Law.

Dodek and Wright have made the introductory chapter available on SSRN, so you can get a feel for the scope and tone of the book.

From that introduction:

This book focuses on con­stitutional and administrative law decisions rendered in the first decade of the McLachlin Court. It includes contributions in both English and French from leading scholars who examine the Court’s legacy in areas

. . . [more]
Posted in: Reading

Maximizing Intranets for Corporate Communications

In September, I attended the 18th “Intranets for Corporate Communications” conference hosted by Federated Press. Attendees and speakers were an interesting mix of marketing, corporate communications and knowledge management experts as well as intranet consultants. The focus of the two day course was on using intranets to better maximize internal communications, breakdown silos, motivate employees, promote organizational change and firm branding. The three themes that really stood out for me were the importance of an intranet’s usability, content and role in helping to communicate change through out an organization.

Don Hameluck, a usability expert, talked about the winning formula . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing

Huge Collection of Fake IDs, Documents and Cheques Given to Lawyers by Fraudsters

Fraud attempts against lawyers can involve a great deal of counterfeit documentation, starting with the initial client ID (passports, licenses), various agreements, loan documents and bank statements, and ending with the cheque that finally arrives at the lawyer’s office. When we add posts about a fraud to the AvoidAClaim blog, we also provide images of these fake documents that lawyers have provided to us.

On a new page on the AvoidAClaim blog we have post a large selection of the fake passports, licenses, documentation and cheques in one place. The page is called “Huge collection of fake IDs, documents . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law: Practice Management, Technology: Internet

Bilingualism in the Federal Courts

Given the recent interest in whether the nominees for the Supreme Court should be bilingual, I thought readers might be interested in a dispassionate overview from those great folks at the Legal and Legislative Affairs Division of the Parliamentary Information and Research Service: “Bilingualism in the Federal Courts,” [PDF] by Marie-Ève Hudon.

This document analyzes the rules that govern the use of both official languages in the federal courts, that is, the courts established by Parliament. It gives a brief overview of Canada’s court system before examining the legislative, constitutional and judicial framework of bilingualism in the federal

. . . [more]
Posted in: Miscellaneous, Practice of Law

Autopsy of a Deal – Why Do It

Outsourcing deals are often long-term arrangements that span over periods of 10-15 years. It is not unusual to see personnel changes on both sides of the contract during the term of the deal, right up to the point where there is no-one left from the original deal team on either side. For many this might not sound like an issue – after all, knowledge transfer tends to be an ongoing exercise for both parties (including knowledge transfer on how to manage and interpret the contract). Unfortunately, when the original deal team has left, and this does happen, something valuable could . . . [more]

Posted in: Outsourcing

Legal Research Services for the Public – Looking for a Solution

Ever since I set up a shingle four years ago to consult independently, I have been asked periodically as to whether I do legal research. Most recently, a few people have asked if this is a service I provide for the public. My response until now has been that I really don’t know of anyone who does any substantive legal research for the public. It would be great to have the great collective mind of the Slaw community work on a solution since it is something I haven’t been able to crack myself.

Some libraries (public and academic) may be . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Technology