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Archive for September, 2012

A “Real Name” Law?

According to,

On Thursday last week, eight judges in South Korea’s Constitutional Court unanimously struck down a law requiring the use of real names online on the grounds that it violated the constitutional right to free speech.

Would the Canadian Charter or other law produce the same effect if Parliament passed a similar statute?

Is there any remedy against a private service provider sought to enforce such a policy? I know that Facebook states that users must use their real names, bit I also know that that rule is not universally applied. (It is a bit hard to . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Foreign Law, Technology: Internet, ulc_ecomm_list

K-K-K-K-K Katmandu

But for the moment we’ll stick to k-k-k-k-k-causation and contribution.

Does Clements-Resurfice material contribution apply between tortfeasors claiming contribution?

Is there any reason in principle not to allow contribution between tortfeasors where their liability to the plaintiff is based on material contribution?

I can’t see one.

(Other than that if we take Clements at face value its ratio deals only with causation of injury in claims for damages in claims based on negligence.)

In principle, there is nothing about the material contribution doctrine to risk doctrine that necessarily limits it to being a basis for causation of plaintiff’s claims for . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions

Breaking Up With eBooks

Current Cites recently ran a description of a spirited rejection of the current (broken, expensive) eBook offerings from publishers, from Sarah Houghton, Director of California’s San Rafael Public Library:

As the technically-savvy library director for the San Rafael Public Library (CA), the author can be considered on the front lines of the disaster known as e-books in libraries. And this post makes it clear that she’s fed up and won’t take it any more. Using a brilliant metaphor of breaking up with a “bad boyfriend”, Houghton skewers the e-book publishing industry.

(some NSFW language in the wall of text, but . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Publishing

Whither Stanley?

As I write this the NHL is roughly 12 hours away from locking out the players for the third time in a row; right about now you are thinking that this is going to be a post about labour law (note labour spelled the proper way-with a “u”); but that is not the case. This post is going to trend closer to property law. You may recall that during the last NHL lockout a question arose as to the ownership and awarding of the Stanley Cup which arose in part from Lord Stanley’s words in 1892 when he wrote:


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

The Friday Fillip: Novelty Songs

I wrote last week about memory and dredged up a strange novelty song, Purple People Eater, to make some point or other. Which got me thinking about novelty songs. So here’s a more or less random, and certainly idiosyncratic, set of those catchy, silly (or even daft), bits of nonce music that once were all the rage but now seem to have disappeared (whether in favour of earnestness or coolness unalloyed, I’m can’t say, being fairly unattached to the current pop music scene). Please feel free to disabuse me of this and point to current novelty tunes — or simply . . . [more]

Posted in: Miscellaneous

Marketing Effort Must Allow for Business Development

Stop marketing. Stop all the events, sponsorships and advertising. Stop updating your website, the firm blog and lawyer bios. Stop all the busy work that is often necessary in legal marketing.

If you don’t, you (and your lawyers) are at risk of not making adequate time to zero in on critical business development activities that bring in new work. The marketing function exists to build your reputation, raise your profile, establish credibility and generate interest. It will also help to identify where relationships stand and perhaps even the needs of your clients and prospects. And this is where marketing passes . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Marketing

You Might Like … to Reflect on Nerf Guns, Big Bangs, Big Data, Bike Locks, the Inner Child and More

This is a post in a series appearing each Friday, setting out some articles, videos, podcasts and the like that contributors at Slaw are enjoying and that you might find interesting. The articles tend to be longer than blog posts and shorter than books, just right for that stolen half hour on the weekend. It’s also likely that most of them won’t be about law — just right for etc.

Please let us have your recommendations for what we and our readers might like.

. . . [more]
Posted in: Miscellaneous, Reading: You might like...

Saving on Law Firm Costs Not the Canadian Way

Just when I had given up on major law firms doing something that makes them more efficient and innovative, international law firm Bingham McCutchen LLP relocates 250 of its staff from around the globe (if they choose to move) to Lexington, Kentucky into a former IBM building on the University of Kentucky’s Coldstream Research Campus business park.

The firm decided to move its finance, accounting, human resources, information technology, knowledge services, marketing, operations and risk management staff into one location to save costs, improve coordination and become much more efficient.

Certainly the $6.5 million in tax incentives from state and . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Future of Practice, Practice of Law: Practice Management

Recommendations for New Manitoba Legislation to Remove Barriers Faced by People With Disabilities

Manitoba is the second province in Canada that intends to make their province accessible for persons with disabilities.
Posted in: Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Legislation

Professional Publishing Partnerships and Joint Ventures

I’m always surprised when people or businesses delude themselves into thinking they can be the best at everything, that they can excel at whatever they do and don’t need help from others, even if others are the experts. Perhaps it’s part of the “believe in yourself” culture that focuses exclusively on self rather than on teamwork or, more likely on greed, the idea being that profits can never be shared. More generously, maybe, in part, it’s because of human nature, fear and the practical experience that it’s difficult to make money when having to share the pot among too many . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Publishing

Apple Announces iPhone5

Apple just announced the new iPhone 5. Some of the features Apple is touting:

Thinner and lighter – apparently the world’s thinnest smartphone. A bit taller than before, which give a bigger screen (close to 16:9)and better colour. Apps designed for the current screen size will be letterboxed like a TV.

It includes LTE for most major US and Canadian telcos. (Apparently no NFC, though.)

It has a new, faster, more energy efficient CPU (the A6), and longer battery life.

Of course an improved camera.

Enhanced audio.

A new, smaller “Lightning” connecter replaces the current Apple connector. (It’s about time. . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology

Working the System and Contempt of Court

“This is not a case where a contemnor was deprived of the opportunity to purge his contempt . . .”

“Contemnor” — Now there’s a word your don’t run across every day. Garner’s Dictionary of Legal Usage (American) tells us that because the correlative “contemnee” is “exceedingly rare”, the spelling “contemner” is generally preferred. But whether -or or -er, it’s someone guilty of contempt, typically contempt of court, of course. And if you’re curious about what such a person might do to earn this label, you need look no further than the very recent Ontario Court of Appeal case of . . . [more]

Posted in: Substantive Law: Judicial Decisions