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Paper Topics
The following topics are suggested for Fall 2005:

1. Does the CRTC's recent decision to regulate VoIP indicate that greater Internet regulation can be expected? 

2. Will the proposed changes to the Copyright Act in Bill C-60 strike a fair balance between the rights of copyright owners and copyright users? 

3. What the Federal Court gives, the Federal Court of Appeal takes away - where does the law on file-swapping stand in Canada after the Federal Court of Appeal's decision in BMG v. John Doe, [2005] F.C.J. No. 858 (F.C.A.)? 

4. Picketing on the Internet - How far can a union go in its criticism? 

5. U.S. courts are applying the doctrine of initial interest confusion to trade-mark usage on the Internet. Is that doctrine available to Canadian trade-mark owners? 

6. The legal enforceability of digital signatures has been a hot topic for the last few years. Rules are now in place: why aren't digital signatures more prevalent? 

7. What criteria will Canadian courts apply before enforcing foreign judgments against a Canadian's online activities? 

8. Are courts clarifying or confusing the rules relating to click-wrap and shrink-wrap agreements?

9. An examination of the use of electronic agents to conclude online legal agreements. While a contract may be formed by the interaction of an electronic agent and a natural person or by the interaction of electronic agents, emerging technologies continue to push the envelope. For example, "Contract by Spiders" - can automated software tools (called "spiders") be used to legally consent to the terms of use or terms of service agreements on websites they visit -- thereby committing their operators to the terms of those agreements and subjecting them to liability for violations ? Examine the use of electronic agents in the formation of online contracts and the issues raised thereby. 

10. Special On-line Issues - The Internet has become an important tool for the health care industry. What legal issues are raised by the use of online services related to the online collection, use and disclosure of health related data and information ? What legal protections exist today to safeguard same ? 

11. Special On-line Issues II - The Internet has become an important tool for marketing to children. What legal issues are raised by the use of the Internet to market products and services to children and to collect and use information from and about children? What legal protections exist today to safeguard children and what gaps continue to exist? 

12. Should Canadian law protect technologies that protect copyright ? Consider whether Canada should adopt the anti-circumvention provision described in the recent Government of Canada Statement on Proposals for Copyright reform - which would make it an offence to circumvent, for infringing purposes, a technology that is used to protect material that is subject to copyright protection. What impact could such adoption have (such as from the perspective of copyright policy, innovation and freedom of expression, etc.).

13.  Has the law relating to Internet Service Provider liability in Canada changed in the wake of the Supreme Court of Canada's decision in SOCAN v. Canadian Association of Internet Providers 2004 SCC 45?

14.  Defamation on the Internet; Are there coherent rules yet?

15.  Is there still a need for a domain name dispute resolution process?

16.  Does Canadian trade-mark law provide adequate protection to trade-mark owners against search result advertising?

17.  Do the domain name dispute resolution policies strike the right balance when addressing protest or parody web sites?

18.  Spam – can the law protect us?

19.  Does Canada need a data protection directive or other sui generis protection for databases?

20.  Internet pharmacies and the impossibility of regulating e-commerce.

21.   Employer's rights to monitor and limit use of email and the Internet.

22.   Jurisdiction on the Internet – a comparison of Canadian and American approaches.

23.   Should the CRTC regulate "broadcasting" on the Internet?

24.   Should business method patents be available in Canada?

25.   Who owns what?  The rules relating to intellectual property ownership in the workplace.

26.   Do the present Criminal Code and common law search provisions give Canadian police the tools needed to investigate crime in the information technology age?  Compare Canadian responses to those of the US and Europe.  How can legislation keep pace with evolving technologies?

27.   Few crimes are ‘technology specific’ – what criteria should guide Parliament in creating new “e-crime” provisions? Should Parliament move to criminalize spam and other specific internet abuses?

28.   Do offshore internet "casinos" violate Criminal Code gambling provisions?

Interested in writing on a topic not listed above?  

Please send a brief description of your proposed paper topic to or for prior approval.  Your request will be responded to as soon as possible.



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