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Submission + - British Columbia teen incarcerated for Swatting and online harassment (www.cbc.ca)

wrecked writes: A 17 year old boy living in Coquitlam, BC plead guilty to a number of charges relating to online harassment , including swatting. His victims were primarily women gamers across Canada and the U.S.A., who he targeted because they rejected his "friends" requests or demands for photos. The judge sentenced him for 16 months incarceration (minus time served) plus a period of probation afterward, and told him, "The last seven or eight years of your life have been a waste of time in that you have not put in any effort to develop the social and academic skills, work habits and moral compass that are required to succeed in the real world.” The teen is a Young Offender, so his identity cannot be disclosed.

Comment Re:Keep on the Borderlands... (Score 1) 59

D&D 5e brings back a lot of the crap I didn't like from 3.x, ignores positive changes made to the game in 4e (powers, tactical battle with miniatures, skill challenges) and introduces a couple of new things: higher prices for books, missing information on how to handle certain situations (for instance: poison), and advantage/disadvantage. All summed up, it's got me saying "meh". The fact that the core rulebooks cost $50 each instead of $20-$30 makes them out of the price range of what 12 year-olds can afford (the age when I started playing AD&D). It seems to me that WotC really fucked up this release, not having the PHB, DMG, and MM ready at the same time. Yes the new books are gorgeous, but have you ever had to use them for building a character or referencing information mid-game? I give it a C.

I respectfully disagree. I started with 1st edition AD&D but lost interest once 2e came around. I once had a look at 4e, and found it completely baffling. I recently got back into D&D with a group of other middle-aged folk, and we initially using the 1e rules. When the 5e playtests came out, we switched to that, because we found that the new rules evoked the feel of AD&D, but are well-designed and coherent. I have all of the 5e rulebooks now, and I personally feel that these rules are like 1e but with all of the stuff that I would have houseruled anyway.

Regarding cost, anyone can download the "Basic" Rules for free: http://dnd.wizards.com/article...

The main difference between the Basic Rules and the hardcopies is that Basic is limited to the four classic D&D classes: Fighter, Cleric, Rogue, Mage. Otherwise, the Basic Rules are completely functional, and you can play solely with these.

Comment Re:What if the defamation is in the link? (Score 1) 88

This is implied by the separate but concurring judgment. The Chief Justice writes: "In sum, in our view, a hyperlink should constitute publication if, read contextually, the text that includes the hyperlink constitutes adoption or endorsement of the specific content it links to." Crookes v Newton (2011 SCC 47) at paragraph 50.


Submission + - Canadian Supreme Court rules that hyperlinking is (canlii.org)

wrecked writes: "One of the elements of libel (written defamation) is that the defamatory content must be published. Today, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that hyperlinking to another website that contains potentially defamatory material, does not constitute "publication" for the purposes of libel. The judgment is Crookes v. Newton, 2011 SCC 47"

Submission + - Australia reviews tier-two software patents (itnews.com.au)

An anonymous reader writes: Australia may consider excluding software from its second-tier patent system to better align the system with those of trading partners like Japan and Korea. A Government review has raised concerns that it may be difficult to justify Australia's low requirements for software innovation patents. The public consultation period for the review closes on 14 October.

Submission + - Timelines.com Files Suit Against Facebook (tekgoblin.com)

tekgoblin writes: "Timelines.com has filed a suit against Facebook on the grounds that Facebook’s new Timeline feature, because of course, no one has ever had the idea of putting a series of events or pictures in a line marked by dates. Timelines.com is a site which “enables people like you to collaboratively record, discover and share history. It’s history recorded by the people, for the people.”"

Submission + - Canadian court finds that website scraping infring (canlii.org) 1

wrecked writes: A trial judgment from British Columbia, Canada, found that Zoocasa, a real estate search site operated by Rogers Communications, breached copyright by scraping real estate listings and photos from Century 21 Canada. The decision thoroughly reviews the issues of website scraping, Terms of Use, "Shrink Wrap" and "Click Wrap" Agreements, robots.txt files, and copyright implications of hyperlinking. For American readers used to multi-million dollar damages, the court here awarded $1,000 (one thousand dollars) for breach of the Century 21 website's Terms of Use, and statutory copyright damages totalling $32,000 ($250 per infringing real estate photo). More analysis at Michael Geist's blog, and the Globe & Mail.

Comment Re:No kidding (Score 3, Informative) 383

Sorry, IAAL in Canada, and I can't let your comment go without a reply. The libel laws between the US and Canada are very different. In Canada, there are several defences against libel: justification (ie "truth", the most difficult defence to prove), absolute or qualified privilege (ie communications in a confidential setting), fair comment (ie honestly held opinion in good faith), and the new defence of "responsible communication on matters of public interest" (ie. "responsible journalism").

The last defence of "responsible communication on matters of public interest" was created in 2009 by the Supreme Court of Canada in Grant v Torstar 2009 SCC 61. That case was actually covered in Slashdot: Landmark Canadian Hyperlink Case Goes to Supreme Court.

Read of that case if you are interested in defamation law (but seek legal advice if you have a problem). It explains the legal tests for all of the defences. Since the defence of "responsible communications in matters of public interest" does not exist in US law, it means that American journalists and bloggers have a higher risk of liability for defamation than their Canadian counterparts. So which country has stronger freedom of expression?

Comment Re:The end of the 'net in Canada? (Score 2, Insightful) 118

Neither should you underestimate the technological sophistication of the Supreme Court of Canada ("SCC"). This is the same court that recently, in R. v. Morelli, overturned a warrant for child pornography on the basis that the contents of an internet browser cache does not constitute possession.

This court also, 4 months ago, decided in Grant v. Torstar Corp. to create a new defence against defamation of "responsible communication on matters of public interest". This new defence allows citizens (including bloggers as well as traditional journalists) to publish critical statements that may not necessarily be true, but are made in good faith towards the public interest. If this defence existed in the UK, then the British Chiropractic Association would not have been able to sue Dr. Simon Singh for scientifically doubting chiropractic claims of success.

A few years ago, the SCC issued a decision in CCH v. Upper Law Society of Canada, that clarified the "fair dealing" defence in Canadian copyright law. That case dismissed an allegation that merely placing a photocopier in a library was an inducement to copyright infringement.

Finally, the SCC itself has incorporated technology into its proceedings. The work flow is paperless; documents must be filed digitally. The court is outfitted with terminals at every station, and the documents are viewed on screens. Selected hearings are broadcast over the internet.

Yes, IAAL, and a GNU/Linux user to boot. It bugs me when people automatically assume that lawyers are technologically inept.

Comment Re:Wow, Savvy Judge (Score 1) 363

If you ever get a chance to visit the Supreme Court of Canada in Ottawa, Ontario, you will see just how tech-savvy it really is. All documents must be filed electronically. Every station in the court (judges, clerks, lawyers and reporting media) has an embedded computer to manage the digital case materials. There are large-screen monitors for the public gallery to follow along.

The SCC broadcasts select hearings over the web. The court's decisions are all published and searchable on the internet.

Slashdot readers would also be interested in the 2004 case CCH v Law Society of Upper Canada, which considered the concept of "fair dealing" under Canada's Copyright Act.

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