'Link Round-Up’ gives you a glimpse into the articles that got the most airtime around the Loom Analytics water cooler this week. Published every Friday, article topics include access to justice, big data, legal technology, and what’s happening in the Canadian legal landscape.
- The Ontario Budget for 2017-2018 was tabled earlier this week. Betakit breaks down the tech investments in the new budget, including $50 million invested in AI, "$130 million in 5G wireless technology, $20 million for quantum computing, $75 million for advanced computing, and $80 million for autonomous vehicle technology."
- Several weeks ago, we shared the news that a drug trafficking case coming up before the Supreme Court of Canada would provide the opportunity to revisit R v. Jordan, and much sooner than anyone would have expected. This Tuesday, the case was brought before the court, and the SCC "faced calls by several provinces … to relax tough new criminal trial timelines while defence lawyers urged judges not to cave to those demands," reports Tonda MacCharles of the Toronto Star. While prosecutors argued that a greater degree of flexibility is needed to deal with complex cases, the defence team, Michael Crystal and Frank Addario, said the decision is working as it is meant to.
"Crystal said, if the high court now tinkered with the Jordan ruling, it 'would allow the culture of complacency to return.'
'By setting presumptive ceilings and subtracting defence delay, Jordan forces Crown prosecutors and defence lawyers to abandon their silos and Cold War posturing so that they, and not judicial officers, are the ones to resolve disputes.' Crystal urged the court not to re-calibrate the Jordan timelines, saying that it was 'an aggressive step forward and that it is changing the game.'"
- With Donald Trump's government repealing privacy protections on browsing data, David Daley of Salon reports that political parties on both sides of the aisle are beginning to look to internet browsing habits as a potential means for redistricting intelligence (read: gerrymandering). However, though tech and Big Data certainly have the potential to be used for (ever more scarily precise and micro-targeted) evil, Zohar Lazar of Wired points out that math and tech are also the best front in the fight against gerrymandering, describing the efforts of one Eric McGhee, a research fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California, who is using math to calculate the "efficiency gap" of a district. The bigger the gap, the more gerrymandered the state. As Zahar puts it, "The data of democracy is up for grabs. Thank goodness the mathematicians are watching."
- Finally, to take you into the weekend on a high note, Brendan Kenny of Lawyerist lets out his inner legal writing geek and explores The Supreme Court’s Style Guide, published last month. Ever wonder what the United States Supreme Court's take on using the Oxford Comma is? Wonder no more.