Podcasts from 2010 CALL Conference available

If you are a member of CALL, but were not able to attend the conference in Windsor this year, you may be interested in listening to some of the podcasts from the conference.

The available podcasts are:

  • We are Stewards of the Great Lakes: Law and Policy for Changing Times - Maude Barlow, National Chairperson of the Council of Canadians
  • Avoiding Obsolescence: Understanding and Engaging the Net Generation - Susan Gibbons, University of Rochester
  • Law Libraries in a Changing World
  • Twitter and Blogging in the Courtroom
  • CALL/ACBD Annual General Meeting
  • Vendor Liaison Open Forum

To access them, go to http://www.callacbd.ca/index.php, log in using your member ID, click on "Professional Development" and then click on "Podcasts".

June Seminar & Social! Plus photos...

Summer is here! Take a break from your busy day and join us for our Summer Social Event and roundtable discussion on Thursday, June 24th!

This is an opportunity for VALL members to get together, share stories and summer plans, and enjoy a fantastic BBQ lunch!  We will be introducing next year's Executive, announcing the new Lifetime Members and catching up with many of our Honoured Members! A photographer will be available to take individual and group photos as well, so if you have been thinking about updating your VALL profile with your picture or if you'd just like a shot with your friends and colleagues, this the time to do it. 

New B.C. Supreme Court Civil Rules

The new B.C. Supreme Court Civil Rules came into force on July 1, 2010. They can be found at http://www.bclaws.ca/EPLibraries/bclaws_new/document/ID/freeside/168_2009_00

To coincide with the coming into effect of the new Supreme Court Rules, the Supreme Court has issued a new collection of Practice Directions and Administrative Notices; these can be found at http://www.courts.gov.bc.ca/supreme_court/practice_and_procedure They include an Index and Table of Concordance.

Crown Publications has announced that the updates for its Rules of Court loose-leaf are expected to be delivered in late July due to a publishing delay.

Irwin Law's Canadian Online Legal Dictionary

Irwin Law has released its Canadian Online Legal Dictionary, available for free at http://www.irwinlaw.com/cold. The dictionary is currently comprised of terms "defined in glossaries of Canadian law books published by Irwin Law" but will be kept up-to-date by Irwin Law editors. It also has a collaborative element so that "users will be able to submit terms of their own choosing for addition to the dictionary."

(Thanks to SLAW and Shaunna Mireau for the tip.)

"The Future of Books Related to the Law?"

Eugene Volokh has written an article in the Michigan Law Review entitled "The Future of Books Related to the Law?" In the article, he talks about the likely impact of e-readers (such as the Kindle) on legal publishing.

Although the focus of the article is on how law e-books are likely to evolve to meet the demands of law students and faculty, there are a lot of interesting points for anyone interested in the future of law books. Pluses of e-readers include no maximum limit on the length of a book  and the ability to put in hypertext links; minuses include such issues as how does a library legally "lend" an e-book if the licencing agreement prevents copying?

"Cornerstones of Law Libraries for an Era of Digital-Plus"

John G. Palfrey Jr., Vice Dean, Library and Information Resources, Harvard Law School, has written a paper entitled "Cornerstones of Law Libraries for an Era of Digital-Plus". The abstract reads:

Law librarians would be well served by sharing a vision for the future of legal information, one that is informed by the methods of multiple disciplines and that will promote democratic ideals. This shared vision could guide us as we continue to lay the cornerstones for law libraries in a “digital-plus” era.

In the paper Palfrey emphasizes that it is important for law libraries collaborate to make the most of this "digital-plus era". Libraries need to understand how users learn, and adjust their systems accordingly. Although the focus of the paper is on academic law libraries, there are still some interesting points for those of us working in other types of law library.

The paper can be downloaded from SSRN.

Joint Study Institute update

Joint Study Institute: Constitutional Law, the Charter of Rights and Parliament

We hope you are planning to join us in Montreal for an exciting series of programmes covering Canada’s Legal Kaleidoscope.

On Monday morning, June 21st, we will have two programmes designed to introduce attendees to the unique legal and political situations in Canada. 

"The Constitution and Charter in the 21st Century” will start the conference off with a discussion of constitutional and charter issues in the news and the courts right now.  Mahmud Jamal will provide a brief introduction to the Charter of Rights and then speak more specifically about a number of topical charter issues: freedom of religion, freedom of expression, gay marriage, and federalism and the creation of a federal securities regulator. The second speaker, Professor Bev Baines, an expert in the constitutional rights of women, will discuss such topics as reasonable accommodation, Sharia law, decriminalization of polygamy, and religious equality.

Joint Study Institute update

We hope you are planning to join us in Montreal for the CALL Joint Study Institute June 20-23, 2010. We are very pleased to be able to feature Mr. Justice John H Gomery, who will be speaking on Transparency and Access to Information. Best known as the Commisioner of Inquiry into the Sponsorship Program and Advertising Activities, Justice Gomery was recently elected President of the Quebec Press Council. Transparency in society is a major preoccupation for Justice Gomery and there is no doubt his speech will give us great food for thought on Canadian politics.

For more information and to sign up now, go to: http://www.callacbd.ca/conferences/JSI/program/index.htm. 

Recent Alberta judgment involving online charges

Shaunna Mireau's latest column in SLAW talks about the comments made by Mr. Justice Macleod in Aram Systems Ltd. v. NovAtel Inc., 2010 ABQB 152 regarding recovering the costs of legal research. Although the disbursement was ultimately disallowed, the judge's summary of the current situation facing law firms is spot on:

"Indeed, it might be argued that a lawyer who chooses to forgo computerized legal research is negligent in doing so. This is particularly so given that many law firms and indeed governments are now cancelling hard copy subscriptions to legal resources in favour of the electronic versions. The practice of law has evolved to the point where computerized legal research is no longer a matter of choice."

Many thanks to Shaunna for pointing out this case.

The Business of Law: Views from the Law Firm Administrator's Chair

This January, we were very lucky to have a distinguished panel of speakers shed some light on this timely and important topic. They were:

  • Ernie Gauvreau, General Manager with Gowling Lafleur Henderson
  • Miriam Redford, Director of Administration and Finance at Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP;
  • Bob Waterman, Director of Administration at Richards Buell Sutton LLP.
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