Commentary

Monday, 16 November 2015 09:00

Top 10 things you need to know about e-discovery

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Top 10 things you need to know about e-discoveryIn January 2011, I wrote “Taming e-discovery anxiety.” In the five years since, I have written 29 articles to de-mystify e-discovery and provide a language and common framework to improve general understanding of the basic process and mechanics of e-discovery. Generally, the source of my inspiration was questions from readers and others.
Monday, 16 November 2015 09:00

Get naked

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"Get naked and be a pig.” You’re not going to get much more vivid advice from an in-house client on what their expectations for service are.
Monday, 05 October 2015 09:00

Combatting the lynch mob

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Illustration: Dushan Milic
Illustration: Dushan Milic
Billie Holiday, in her 1939 song Strange Fruit, sang: “Black bodies swinging in the southern breeze. Strange fruit hanging from the poplar trees.” She was singing about lynch mobs. In the southern United States, in the late 19th century and first half of the 20th century, mobs of white people lynched black men for crimes that were presumed and never proven. Historians estimate about 3,500 black men were murdered in this way. With some notable exceptions, the legal profession looked the other way.
Monday, 05 October 2015 09:00

I’ve been inspired

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In the close to two decades I’ve been working in the legal community, it never ceases to amaze me how truly inspirational many lawyers, judges, and others in the profession are.
Monday, 07 September 2015 09:00

Social media e-discovery: its time is here

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Social media e-discovery: its time is hereSocial media is an important source of discovery in an increasing range of cases and can often yield the most important evidence. Social media and its derivatives are prevalent with many people using social media as their dominant communications channel, preferring some in-app messaging tools to e-mail. Corporations, too, are using these media to target and communicate with their customers. Ignore these sources and you leave potentially game-changing evidence on the table.
Monday, 07 September 2015 09:00

Transparency and law firm numbers

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Dentons LLP is in a dogfight with American Lawyer magazine over the media empire’s Global 100 law firm rankings. The firm takes issue with the profit-per-equity-partner figure cooked up by the magazine, after Dentons announced last year it wouldn’t disclose its numbers. So much so it created the web site accuracy100.com to argue its case after the firm says requests for corrections fell on deaf ears.
Monday, 07 September 2015 09:00

Editorial: Building bridges

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A few months ago, I was looking for a writer in Saskatoon to help with our Saskatoon city report. Some colleagues suggested I reach out to Mervin Brass, which I did. He grew up on the Key First Nation and is currently the editor and publisher of Treaty 4 News, so he’s steeped in the news and culture of aboriginal Canadians. While we were chatting about the Saskatoon story, Brass suggested Canadian Lawyer do something about the many lawyers who’ve worked with First Nations people who had the misfortune of being sent to Indian residential schools.
Monday, 03 August 2015 08:00

Trust is the crux of it all

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Illustration: Darcy Muenchrath
Illustration: Darcy Muenchrath
Trust and law. The optimal relationship between the two is an ethical conundrum at the heart of legal practice. How much can we trust each other? How much law do we need? Do unnecessary legal rules replace trust to the detriment of a truly civil society? Does increasing legalization — turning every problem, no matter what it is really about, into a legal issue — damage the fabric of our community?
Monday, 03 August 2015 08:00

Augmentation, not automation

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Augmentation, not automationThe article “Beyond automation” in the June issue of Harvard Business Review has sparked many excellent legal and other responses since its publication, including a summary on the excellent 3 Geeks and a Law Blog.
Monday, 03 August 2015 08:00

Total ad ban a no go

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The Law Society of Upper Canada is looking at making changes to the rules governing lawyer advertising. It has stirred up a hornet’s nest.
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