Web week

The Lawyer‘s Web Week is a weekly commentary on legal activity on the web. This includes an overview of the best of the week’s blogs. If you want to direct us to useful links, email webweek@thelawyer.com.

All pleasant and corrected
Web week has an apology to make. Susie Law School wrote in: “I nearly fell off my chair in excitement upon discovering that my blawg was featured in Web Week – and better yet, that you liked it!!!”However, imagine my disappointment when I discovered a misprint! The link to the blog is in fact reallylegallyblonde.blog spot.com NOT legallyblonde. blogspot.com which means that the hundreds of new readers bound to now flock to my page will be misdirected and alas, will not find me.”

On her blog this week Susie wrote: “Unfortunately the link was incorrect, but I look forward to a correction in next week’s issue… (although I doubt it because I can’t imagine I’m important enough :()”Well, you’re important enough to us, Susie. Keep up the good work.

An age-old issue
With all the hullabaloo about work-life balance continuing, we found this very sad tale at New Zealand mediator Geoff Sharp’s blog at mediatorblah blah.blogspot.com: “From the documents I had been given beforehand, I knew he had substantial assets so I was surprised at his appearance when we met at the start of the day.

“He was an old man – I guessed well into his 70s, gaunt and gnarled.

“He looked to me like he had been on the land for many years – but I knew that he had not; my papers told me he had been successful in retail in Europe and only returned to New Zealand late in life. “It had also been clear from the background that the family was not close.

“No wife on the scene, perhaps dead – I didn’t enquire. Two daughters and a son, all three of whom were at the mediation, all in their 50s.

“They treated him badly. It took me by surprise. I was missing something, as mediators always do when we sit with families who are at war.

“He seemed too frail for them to do this to – beat up on him just because of what they wanted – for him to take a property off the market – they all but said it: ‘we’ll sell it when you’re gone’.

“Although I had no business to be, he could see I was worried. He pulled me aside late in the morning and what he said caught me off guard.

“I wasn’t ready for the connection. I didn’t think we had one.”‘I’ve taught them too well,’ he said. ‘I was always too busy for them when they needed me – you reap what you sow…’

“And then, as he told me what terms he was resigned to, he stared through me and out the window behind me. He added, ‘You know, at some point in your life you stop thinking of time as passing and think of it as time remaining.’

“I thought about that all the way home.”

War of nerds
It’s encouraging to read more bloggers hailing from around the globe, but it’s still the US that leads the way in the blogosphere. An old favourite of Web Week, wiredgc.com, picked up on the Microsoft vs Google copyright scrap: “It’s certainly a sign of the pressure that Microsoft feels from Google that it takes a public-service position before a publishers association. While one focus of [Microsoft associate general counsel Thomas] Mr Rubin is Google’s book-indexing project, certainly YouTube is on its mind and in its cross hairs.

“In fact, this appears to me to be a sign that Microsoft has decided to use copyright as a legal weapon in this one battle as part of its larger war against Google. It’s almost as if Microsoft is taking on the entire business model of Google.

“I bet Google already has a war room (or war-wiki?) going on this, as evidenced by the quick response from its CLO Mr Drummond. Perhaps ace Google copyright counsel William Patry will take this up on his copyright blog, williampatry.blogspot.com. [He hasn’t yet.]

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