Unit 15: Competition law (solution)
Staying up-to-date on a legal subject is essential to the practice of law. The Internet is full of information sources providing updates on legislation, legal news and discussions of legal developments.
Many of these resources also provide valuable information regarding the development of legal English. Many areas of law develop rapidly – often across borders – and so too does the associated legal English.
In addition to the various techniques for finding information on the Internet outlined in tasks 1–14, there are a number of other sources to help you stay up-to-date with, for example, developments in competition law.
Many newsletters appear online, and it is often possible to subscribe and have them emailed to you.
Newsletter indexes – general
A comprehensive index of online newsletters can be found at www.tile.net. Go to the website and click on the Email Newsletters & Ezines link. Under the Description heading, click L (for law). This will provide you with a list of (amongst others) law-related newsletters to which you can subscribe.
Find and subscribe to a newsletter which might include useful information on competition law in your jurisdiction and/or its associated legal English.
Newsletter indexes – legal
A simple Google search reveals many useful links to legal newsletters. Using the Google search engine, (www.google.com), enter the following search query:
One of the first links returned is to the International Law Office (www.internationallawoffice.com/). As with many websites, this one requires you to register before being granted full access. Registration is free, and only takes a few moments. Once you have registered, you will be able to search and subscribe to any of the thousands of legal newsletters catalogued by the site. These newsletters are indexed by both area of law and jurisdiction.
Find and subscribe to a newsletter including information concerning competition law in your jurisdiction.
Some newsletters are not available as a subscription, but may be either viewed online or downloaded. One example is the EU/Competition/EC Competition Policy Newsletter (ec.europa.eu/comm/competition/publications/cpn/).
Review the EC Competition Policy newsletter archive to find the most recent reference to competition law in your jurisdiction. If you are from outside the EU, choose a jurisdiction with which you or your firm have had previous experience, or may work with in the future.
FindLaw (www.FindLaw.com) provides a useful search facility, detailing law-related newsletters, mailing lists and news items. It is also possible to search for English language articles on foreign jurisdictions.
Use FindLaw to find:
1) A newsletter that provides up-to-date English language references to competition law.
2) Information on your jurisdiction in English.
FindLaw provides a useful introduction to online legal research here:
2) Mailing lists
Mailing lists are a useful way to obtain recent information with insight from experts and enthusiasts. Subscribing to a mailing list will allow you to receive updates on particular topics. The membership and use of mailing lists are sometimes restricted. This is to ensure that new subscribers have a serious and/or professional interest in the subject matter.
A simple Google search reveals many useful links to indexes of legal mailing lists. Using the Google search engine, enter the following search query:
Legal “mailing list”
One of the first hits returned is to the Law Guru mailing list manager (www.lawguru.com/subscribe/listtool.html). This simplifies the procedure for subscribing to one or more of over 600 law-related mailing lists.
Find and subscribe to a mailing list in the area of competition law.
Note: depending on the number of subscribers, mailing lists can generate a lot of email. Unsubscribing to a mailing list is straightforward, and can be done either via email or by following the instructions at the Law Guru mailing list manager (www.lawguru.com/subscribe/listtool.html).
Blogs are also a useful source of recent information. A blog (short for ‘Web log’) is a simple website where entries are posted (put online) on a regular basis. These posts commonly log online references to a particular area of interest, saving you valuable research time. Many bloggers maintain blogs related to specific professions or interests, for example competition law.
Using the Google search engine, enter the following search query:
This will provide many useful indexes of law-related blogs. Use one or more of these indexes to find a blog that includes English language references to competition law in your jurisdiction.
4) News sources
News sources are abundant on the Internet. One way to search for news is to use the special feature of search engines that limits your search to news sources. For example, go to the Dogpile search engine (www.dogpile.com). On the menu appearing above the search field, you can select the News button and then enter your search, which will then be limited to news sources. For example, enter the search query:
Now click on the News button and then hit Go fetch. You will receive links to a list of recent articles on the general area of competition law. Note also that the menu on the right-hand side of the page contains links that can help you limit your search to various sub-categories such as Competition Law in UK, EU Competition Policy, etc.
Google also offers a useful news search (news.google.com).
Use Dogpile or Google to find English language references to competition law in your jurisdiction.
Alerts are also a valuable way to stay abreast of legal developments and associated legal English in a particular area. For a further discussion of alerts, see task 12.
Set up a Google Alert (www.google.com/alerts) to keep you up-to-date with English language references to competition law in your jurisdiction.
A newsgroup (also referred to as a discussion group or a Usenet newsgroup) is an online forum. Users are presented with a summary of discussion topics and can choose to read and/or participate in those in which they are interested.
There are many newsgroups on the Web, covering a wide range of categories. These give users the opportunity to ask other newsgroup participants questions in their area of expertise or interest, for example competition law. Newsgroups are frequently established or maintained by academic and professional institutions, but it is important to know that newsgroups do not necessarily present the latest “news” in the general sense of the word.
The antitrust section of FindLaw (http://www.FindLaw.com/01topics/01antitrust/index.html) includes many useful links to facilitate research into competition law. Clicking the link to Other Discussion Groups will lead you to both the FindLaw antitrust law newsgroup and an index of recommended antitrust law mailing lists.
Google provides a comprehensive, searchable index of Usenet newsgroups which can be found at groups.google.com. In order to contribute to Usenet discussions through Google, you will need to set up a Google account. Full details of how to do this are provided at groups.google.com, along with a useful introduction to using mailing lists.
Click on the Take the tour to learn more link to familiarise yourself with Usenet discussion groups. Now use Google’s Usenet search facility (groups.google.com) to identify a newsgroup that includes discussions in English on competition law in your jurisdiction. For example, if you were interested in discussing recent developments in EU competition law, the following search query would lead you to discussions on a wide range of related topics:
EU “competition law” OR “antitrust law”
As Usenet news articles date back to 1981, Usenet can be a useful way of tracking developments in legal thought, attitudes and language. If you wish to limit your search to a certain time period (amongst other criteria) click on Advanced Groups Search and adjust the settings accordingly.
It is also possible to begin your own newsgroup. Both Google (www.google.com) and Yahoo! (www.yahoo.com) allow you to start your own newsgroup, which they will host without charge. You can choose either to have your newsgroup searchable by all Usenet users, or to keep it private.
7) Audio and video files
Many interesting audio and video clips outlining various aspects of competition law can be found through the excellent Dogpile audio/video search facility.
Go to the Dogpile search engine and enter the following search query:
Compare the links returned by both the audio and video search functions. You will notice that relatively few links are returned, and it is not immediately clear from their titles what kind of information they include.
Remember that competition law is a British English term. Now try the same two search facilities, this time using the following query:
Scan through the two lists. Choose at least one audio clip to listen to, and one video clip to watch.
A note on podcasts and vodcasts
Many audio and video files are available to download or listen to online. These include the BBC’s excellent Law in Action programme (news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/programmes/law_in_action/default.stm) and the weekly Justice Talking, produced by NPR (www.justicetalking.org).
Some online radio and TV programmes are available as podcasts (audio) or vodcasts (video).
You can automatically receive the latest episode of such programmes as soon as they are available by using the iTunes media player, or by downloading a free podcast plugin for other media players, such as Windows Media Player. These can then be played on your computer, PDA or mp3 player. Some mobile phones will also allow you to play podcasts and vodcasts.
A useful introduction to receiving podcasts and vodcasts is provided by the BBC at: www.bbc.co.uk/radio/downloadtrial/
A more comprehensive guide to podcasting, together with a podcast/vodcast directory and associated downloads, can be found at: www.apple.com/itunes/podcasts/
A comprehensive list of Podcasts and Vodcasts can be found at:
The research tasks above should lead you to many useful English language online sources of information concerning developments in competition law in your jurisdiction.
The following selection of online sources takes the European Union as the example jurisdiction.
EU/Competition/EC Competition Policy Newsletter
Academy of European Law Newsletter (General EU Law)
2) Mailing lists
Law Guru provides an excellent selection of competition law/antitrust law mailing lists. This can be found at www.lawguru.com/subscribe/listtool.html
The Blawg (www.blawg.org) is one of many useful indexes of law blogs.
The International Economic Law and Policy Blog (worldtradelaw.typepad.com/ielpblog/) is well-maintained by a group of expert, professional lawyers.
The Antitrust Law blog can be found at http://www.antitrustlawblog.com, and includes useful discussions on many aspects of competition law throughout the world.
The Antitrust Hotch Potch (professorgeradin.blogs.com/professor_geradins_weblog/) focuses on articles from a US perspective, critical of EU competition law.
4) News sources
The following keywords entered into either Dogpile’s (www.dogpile.com) or Google’s (news.google.com) news search will provide you with recent news items on the subject of EU competition law:
“competition law” EU EC Europe
The following keywords entered into Google Alerts (www.google.com/alerts) will provide you with regular updates on EU competition law:
“competition law” EU EC Europe
An ongoing discussion of EU competition law as it relates to recent rulings concerning Microsoft’s anti-competitive practices can be found at:http://groups.google.com/group/comp.os.linux.advocacy/browse_
Note: As newsgroups are generally uncensored and open to all, be aware that not all information found at such groups may be accurate. It is also very common to find errors in spelling, punctuation and grammar.
However, newsgroups are a very lively source of information and a good way of contacting people with similar interests (either professional or personal). They also provide excellent English language practice, so why not find a thread that interests you and write a response to a recent posting? Alternatively, you could begin a new discussion topic. It is important to read the FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) and other rules governing the use of the newsgroup to which you intend to write before contributing to the debate.
7) Audio and video files
Many audio and video clips relating to antitrust law can be found at www.dogpile.com.
Blawg (www.blawg.com) provides links to a selection of law-related podcasts.
Although largely focusing on US law, Justice Talking (www.justicetalking.org) regularly includes informative discussions of international commercial law. Archived episodes can be downloaded from the Justice Talking website, which also includes details of how to subscribe to the podcast.
The BBC has recently begun trialing vodcasts, see news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/breakfast/5217512.stm for details.