'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.
- A Newfoundland drug trafficking case will present a Crown appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada in its spring session, giving the court the opportunity to revisit and clarify the controversial R. v. Jordan decision. The case, which took five years to go to court, had to contend with 'several lawyers acting for six defendants, juggling disclosure of some 20,209 pages of evidence, 89 warrants of various types and, according to a lower court ruling, took 1,700 hours of police overtime to prepare.'
- An amendment to the Citizenship Act which will allow Canadians the right to a court hearing before their citizenship is stripped for fraud or misrepresentation has been voted on and passed by the Senate, reports Nicholas Keung for the Toronto Star. The amended bill will be sent back to the House of Commons in the coming week, with a final vote to follow.
- Sidney Green, the 87-year-old Winnipeg lawyer who went to the SCC appealing his suspension from the Law Society of Manitoba, has decided to retire after losing the battle rather than comply with mandatory continuing professional development. After not reporting any CPD for 2012 or 2013, Green was told to comply within 60 days or be suspended from practicing law. When he refused, his license was suspended.
"I objected to going to programs which were of no value to me," Green said. "And I don't regard the law society as an educational institution."
Omar Ha-Redeye of Slaw reflects on the case here.
- To help combat the spread of fake news, Google has teamed up with fact checking groups to implement a fact check feature for its news and search results. The program was initially available only in the US and United Kingdom but will be going global, presenting users of Google News and Google Search with an overview of the claims made in linked articles and their truthfulness according to sites like Politifact or Snopes directly on their search pages.
- Though the timeline for their development and proliferation is still up for debate, there is no doubt that self-driving cars are the future. Agnese Smith from the CBA National examines what the autonomous car revolution will look like and how to regulate it when it does come. David Danks, an AI ethics expert based in Pittsburgh, is a proponent of "an FDA-style regulatory approval process."
While not the speediest route, a “dynamic” framework that mirrors the regulatory and approval process for drugs — one that is flexible and can account for both positive and negative outcomes — could go a long way to ensuring safety. Allow experimentation, verify conclusions and be prepared to change the regulations depending on the outcome, said Danks.
While some Canadian experts agree this is the best way to proceed, others are pushing for looser regulations, "arguing that too stringent rules greatly hamper innovation, hurting firms’ chances of advancing technology and delaying the safety benefits that self-driving vehicles could bring."
- And finally, if you're looking to end the week on a lighter note, Robert Ambrogi shares stories of Lawyers behaving badly on Facebook over on Above the Law.