Thursday, September 14, 2017

Access to Justice BC Launches New Website

Very pleased to announce that Access to Justice BC has launched a brand new website!



Many thanks to the A2JBC volunteers that helped the process; and especially the project leadership provided by Jane Morley, Q.C. and Jennifer Muller!

Quickscribe Annotations for August 2017

Below are the latest BC legislative annotations from Quickscribe for August.
Quickscribe 2.0 is an easy and effective way to research, track and collaborate on BC legislation. If you haven't explored, there is a free trial.

Tuesday, August 01, 2017

Quickscribe Annotations for June & July 2017

Below are the latest BC legislative annotations from Quickscribe for June and July (just released).

June 2017:
 July 2017:
  • Eileen Vanderburgh, Alexander Holburn + Lang LLP, Personal Information Protection Act
  • OnPoint Legal Research Corporation, Human Rights Code, Securities Act, Local Government Act, Limitation Act, Chartered Professionals Accountants Act, Motor Vehicle Act Regulation 26/58, Fraudulent Conveyance Act
  • Richard Bereti, Harper Grey LLP Environmental Management Act
  • Margaret Mason, Norton Rose Fulbright LLP – Societies Act
Quickscribe 2.0 is an easy and effective way to research, track and collaborate on BC legislation. If you haven't explored, there is a free trial.

Monday, June 05, 2017

Small Decisions Adding Up

As the publisher of Slaw, I get to see a lot of great commentary. I also get to see the statistics behind the website, and I don't mind sharing with you that local colleague Sarah Sutherland of CanLII has a fantastically successful post on her hands!

Her recent piece on Quantifying the Value of Legal Information had as much traffic in its first day as some Slaw posts see over the course of a month. Those are big numbers coming from a website that had 2M+ visits last year.

Sarah's calculation of revenue improvements aside, the premise behind her post is an argument I've been making for years: that small, incremental improvements inside of law firms should be the backbone of law firm administrators.

If you can steer-the-ship to a 1% improvement of efficiency, mid-to-large sized firms can see a serious impact on the firm's profits.  Simply put: Firms make better decisions by having better information in front of them. Some of that information can be external, which is why I liked the case strategy aspect of Loom Analytics; but firms that really know their business model are be able to carve up their internal data collections too.

Good internal information has always been key. Knowing about the firm's settlements in certain areas of practice; or about historical pricing of the firm's services (and its competitors); or as Sarah suggests,
 "things like getting an expert opinion, which is of course what the firm’s clients are already doing, looking at prior history and extrapolating, or conducting research in secondary sources of information and the primary law. This can increase confidence in predicting the outcomes of matters, thereby allowing the firm to make better recommendations. "
Law firms with substantial practice expertise are also in a position to align their accounting data with any of the above factors. This all, of course, is Knowledge Management or "KM".

There will always be individuals inside firms that will question the value of these efforts, but when your job is (as is most firm administrators) to create internal value beyond the artwork on the walls, it's these processes of quantifying the firm's experience that trumps other administrative priorities.

And not just for bigger firms. Small firms (think contingency fees) can profit at an even higher rate when "winning" a decision increases the engagement value.

So is having better legal information valuable? Of course it is.  Sarah Sutherland just happened to put some numbers behind this kind of thinking.

Quickscribe Annotations for May, 2017

Below are the latest Quickscribe additions for new annotations to BC legislation.
Quickscribe 2.0 is an easy and effective way to research, track and collaborate on BC legislation. If you haven't explored, there's a free trial.

Primer on Saskatchewan Legislative Research

It's nice to see law librarian super-blogger Alan Kirkpatrick contributing to VALL Review! In the most recent edition, Alan wrote a short primer on Saskatchewan legislative research, which he's reproduced in full over on his Library Canuck blog.

These seven topics are covered:
  • Court Rules
  • Provincial Point-In-Time Research
  • Legislative Assembly Website
  • Legislative materials
  • Continuing Legal Education
  • Law Society of Saskatchewan Library
  • Additional Resources
Yes, this is a great excuse to visit Alan's blog & put it on your reading list.

Friday, June 02, 2017

Libraries as Friction Points

David Whelan has an inspiring post up this week, titled, Gatekeeper to a Thousand Gates.

The focus of David's discussion isn't necessarily on Law Libraries, though it's a lesson that anyone providing information to a targeted community would do well to listen to. In a fairly detailed example of the digital book sign-out process at his local public library, David describes the delicate balance that libraries must maintain between enabling access to information vs. putting up unintended additional barriers.

In the context of providing 'free' access (or communally paid for access) to licensed content, I think David has it right. Libraries focus on creating an ecosystem that's easy to use, but often end up putting up barriers; and I would add, the publishers themselves don't always make it easy for libraries to act as gatekeepers for paid services.

There is also a bit of an optics issue here. While public libraries often give the impression that the information they deliver is "free access", and publishers certainly do see this kind of access as competition, taking away from their paid product, these types of services are hardly free.

David's concept of "friction points" alone identifies the user's time investment as a soft cost to accessibility. Libraries can try to reduce this friction, but it's hard to imagine a situation where the library service is actually easier than purchasing the product. Which leads me to this question: Has it ever been easier? Is signing up for a library card and wait-listing for a popular piece of fiction any easier than going to the bookstore?

Don't get me wrong, Libraries can reduce the friction to digital borrowing services, as David describes. We can. I suspect we can get much closer using digital tools than we ever could with paper media. But I don't think we can directly compete with publishers. To be honest, I don't think publishers are motivated to make it easier for libraries (but that's a discussion for another day).

For me, really, all library services need to do is get close. If libraries can offer a reasonable alternative, especially when the original material or service doesn't have ROI for a user or group, then close is good enough.

(Horse shoes, hand grenades & library services? ;)

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Quickscribe Annotations Update for April 2017

Below are the latest Quickscribe additions for new annotations to BC legislation.

Quickscribe 2.0 is an easy and effective way to research, track and collaborate on BC legislation. If you haven't explored, there's a free trial

Saturday, April 01, 2017

Quickscribe Annotations Update for March 2017

Over the course of the month of March, Quickscribe 2.0 received a number of new annotations for BC legislation. Here are the most recent additions:
  • Bill BuholzerYoung Anderson Barristers and Solicitors – Local Government Act
  • Richard BeretiHarper Grey LLP Environmental Management Act
  • OnPoint Legal Research Corporation , Court Jurisdiction and Proceedings Transfer Act, Crime Victim Assistance Act, Strata Property Act, Supreme Court Civil Rules Reg. 168/2009, Insurance (Vehicle) Regulation 447/83
  • Margaret MasonNorton Rose Fulbright LLP – Societies Act
  • Eileen VanderburghAlexander Holburn + Lang LLP, Privacy Act, Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act
Quickscribe 2.0 is an easy and effective way to research, track and collaborate on BC legislation. If you haven't explored, there's a free trial

Monday, February 06, 2017

Quickscribe Annotations Update for January 2017


This past month, many pieces of legislation received new annotations on Quickscribe 2.0. Take a look:
  • Jeff Waatainen, DLA Piper LLP - Wildfire Regulation 38/2005, Forest and Range Practices Act, Forest Act, Forest Planning and Practices Regulation 14/2004
  • Kim Jakeman, Harper Grey LLP – Health Professions Act
  • Daniel Sorensen, Sorensen Smith LLP – Employment Standards Act 
  • Stanley Rule, Sabey Rule LLP – Wills Estates and Succession Act
If you haven't explored Quickscribe 2.0 yet, why not sign up for a free trial today? Quickscribe 2.0 is an easy and effective way to research, track and collaborate on BC legislation! 

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Quickscribe Annotation Update for December 2016

The following pieces of legislation received new annotations in Quickscribe 2.0 last month: 
Quickscribe 2.0 is a better way to research, track, and collaborate on BC statutes and regulations - get your free trial today

Friday, December 09, 2016

Roundup of #clawbies2016 Nominations to Date

We're a little over a week into the 11th annual Clawbies, and already more than 40 different blogs, vlogs, and podcasts are in the running. We'll add to this list as more nominations roll in.

Have you made your nominations in the Canadian Law Blog Awards yet? You've got until December 22nd (fine print for the nomination process here) - and don't forget to use the hashtag #clawbies2016!

Blogged nominations:
  •  Erik Magraken at BC Injury Law & ICBC Claims Blog (Social Media for Law Firms, Thoughtful Legal Management, and Slaw)
  • Samantha Collier at Social Media for Law Firms (BC Injury Law & ICBC Claims Blog, Clio Blog, Thoughtful Legal Management)
  • Ronalee Carey Law ( Liz's Blog, Russ Weninger's Immigration Newsletter, Capelle Kane Blog)
  • Leonid Sirota at Double Aspect ( À qui de droit, Juris Blogging, IdeaBlawg + some additional recommendations)
  • CCLA staffers at Robeside Assistance (Michael Spratt, Labour Pains, McElroy Law)
  • Shaun Berstein at News from the Break Room (Labour Pains, Employment & Human Rights Law in Canada, FamilyLLB)
  • Law Society of Saskatchewan Library staffers at Legal Sourcery ( AvoidAClaim, Michael Spratt, Robeside Assistance)
  • ABlawg (âpihtawikosisân, First Peoples Law, Reconciliation Syllabus)
  • Lawyer Locate (Toronto Family Law Blog, Legal Logik Blog, Ontario Criminal Defence Blog)
  • Energy Insider (ABlawg, Administrative Law Matters, Precedent Magazine)
  • Lisa Stam at Employment & Human Rights Law in Canada (Doug Macleod, Michael Spratt, Sean Bawden, First Reference)
  • Municipal Matters (Alcohol & Advocacy, Wood Bull Blog, Michelle Kelly's Condo Law Blog)
  • StartupSource (Michael Geist, Law & Innovation, The Court)

 Tweeted nominations:

































































Monday, December 05, 2016

Recently Added Annotations on Quickscribe 2.0

Here are a couple of new annotations recently added to Quickscribe 2.0:
Quickscribe 2.0 is a better way to research, track and collaborate on BC legislation, and includes annotations by 25 local legal professionals. Sign up for your free trial at www.quickscribe.bc.ca/online/.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

CLBC Needs Help from BC Lawyers

Courthouse Libraries BC needs the support of BC lawyers to help improve their services.

If you can spare a few minutes out of your busy day, consider taking this survey to help shape the CLBC guide and identify:
  • new products, services and approaches to curating, sharing and connecting legal information
  • the main deliverables in their technological platform for supporting communities of legal practice
  • the precise knowledge management needs of tomorrow's legal profession
Information you share will be anonymous, and CLBC will report on the big picture findings after the survey closes next Friday (November 25, 2016).

BC lawyers who complete the survey or share the link (https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/DPPB9DJ) with their Twitter followers using the hashtag #CLBClawyersurvey2016 will also be given the chance to win one of five $100 gift cards to Chapters/Indigo.

Wednesday, October 05, 2016

Quickscribe Annotations Update for September 2016

The following annotations were added to Quickscribe 2.0 this past month:
  • John-Paul Boyd, Canadian Research Institute For Law And The Family – Family Law Act
  • Michael Bain, Hamilton Howell Bain & Gould – Strata Property Act
  • Richard Bereti, Harper Grey LLP – Environmental Management Act
Have you seen Quickscribe 2.0 in action? The service features annotations for BC legislation provided by a team of two dozen local legal professionals. To try out Quickscribe 2.0, sign up for a free trial at  www.quickscribe.bc.ca/online/
 


Tuesday, September 06, 2016

Quickscribe Annotations Update for August 2016

Here are the latest annotations to be added to Quickscribe 2.0
  • Paul Wilson, Fasken Martineau LLP -- Petroleum And Natural Gas Act, Petroleum And Natural Gas Act Regulation 
  • Stan Rule, Sabey Rule LLP -- WESA 
  • Richard Bereti, Harper Grey LLP -- Environmental Management Act
 Quickscribe 2.0 is a better way to research, track, and collaborate on BC statutes and regulations - get your free trial today!

Wednesday, August 03, 2016

Quickscribe Annotation Update for July 2016

Just one new Quickscribe 2.0 annotation to share for July:
  • Paul Wilson, Fasken Martineau LLP – Petroleum And Natural Gas Act
Grab your free trial of Quickscribe 2.0 today -- it's an easy and effective way to research, track and collaborate on BC legislation!

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

Quickscribe Annotations Update for June 2016

Just a short update to highlight the legislation that received new annotations on Quickscribe 2.0 in June:

Health Professions Act -- OnPoint Legal Research Corporation
Community Charter  -- Michael Hargraves, Stewart McDannold Stuart
Privacy Act, Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act -- Eileen Vanderburgh, Alexander Holburn Beaudin + Lang LLP

If you haven't taken Quickscribe 2.0 for a test drive yet, you're invited to sign up for a free trial at  www.quickscribe.bc.ca/online/. Quickscribe 2.0 offers an easy and effective way to research, track, and collaborate on BC legislation. 

Monday, June 06, 2016

Quickscribe Annotations Update for May 2016

Five local legal annotators contributed to Quickscribe 2.0 in May:
Have you tried out Quickscribe 2.0? It's an easy and effective way to research, track, and collaborate on BC legislation. Annotations are provided by a team of 25 local legal professionals. To try it out for free, visit  www.quickscribe.bc.ca/online/ and click the "Free Trial" icon.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

CALL/ACBD Conference ( #callacbd2016) Underway in Vancouver

I've been watching the CALL/ACBD conference unroll on Twitter the last couple of days, and by all accounts it's off to a great start: a terrific event in the stunning city of Vancouver.

If you're not able to be at the conference, be sure to follow the hashtag #callacbd2016. Seeing photos and candid moments and thoughts from the event really feel like the next best thing to being there! I've already hit on a few cool things...

This short & sweet handout contains three ideas for business development/marketing projects that law firm librarians can tackle right away:

 US legal research terms demystified, from a session entitled "Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about US Legal Research But Were Afraid to Ask! US Legal Research For Canadians":

The winners of this year's Hugh Lawford Award for Excellence in Legal Publishing are Thomson Reuters & WestlawNext Canada:

And lastly, I was glad to see that the panel session Steve participated in, Computers in Legal Research, was well received!
There are still two days of sessions left. I'm keen to see more live-tweeting, especially from this morning's Lightning Talks!