May 01

Lawyers Are Also Entrepreneurs!

If you are a lawyer, then one of your life goals may be to set up your own law firm.  In order to succeed at this, you need to not only have skills as a lawyer, but also as an entrepreneur.  As with any business proposal, you need to think about it in a logical way and follow some steps to ensure you cover all bases and don’t hang yourself out to dry.  Here is some basic information to get your wheels moving in the right direction.


The first step, of course is to have a plan of what you want to achieve.  In all forms of business, it is important that you have a sound business plan in order to convince potential investors that they will not lose if they decide to put money into your new company.  This master plan also allows you to understand your own ideas down to the smallest detail and helps you clarify what you are really trying to achieve and what the potential outlay will be if you do not succeed in your new venture.

One huge thing to think about is your business premises.  Whilst you may logically think it would be easier and cheaper to work from home, you have to think about your clients expectations and how they view your credibility.  Would it not seem strange for someone to be paying a lot of money for a solicitor yet that professional does not have their own premises?  Would this seem that you are unprofessional?  In my mind, it would, so I would definitely be looking at office premises as a must have in my new business.  


It is important to remember however, the added cost and stress that having an office brings.  If you have ever moved house, you will be well aware of what a stressful experience that can be.  Obviously, there is a huge financial burden to think about when signing a long term lease, but fit out costs can also be very expensive and management of this whole part of getting your business off the ground can need an entirely different skill set to what you are used to as a lawyer or solicitor.  At this stage, it is important to link up with someone who knows exactly what they are doing so you don’t make any silly mistakes that could potentially cost you a lot of money.


Owning a business also means that you must have professional indemnity insurance which can be a significant cost if you do not hunt around for a good deal.  Starting a new company as a solicitor in the UK also means you must register with the SRA – The Solicitors Regulation Authority.  These are not the only two things you need to worry about.  It is really important that you seek advice from someone who can explain all the ins and outs or starting up your new firm as very recently, some solicitors were getting fined as they had breached the Data Protection Act because they had not notified the Information Commissioners Office.  Unfortunately, there are many similar pitfalls that can swallow you up when starting a new business and they change on a regular basis.  Something like this really does require expert advice from someone who has a constant finger on the pulse, otherwise you are bound to miss something and big fines will be imposed.


Many people also worry about how they are going to go about getting clients.  The obvious answer is referral work but that can often not be enough.  You should have a strategy in place to gain clients on a month to month basis.  One hugely untapped area is the online world.  With more and more people gaining access to the internet every year, other forms of advertising are starting to have less and less impact.  General publications get your name out but your audience is not particularly targeted.  However, with internet search engines, you can receive properly targeted prospective clients. 


There is generally two ways to get new business off the internet via search engines.  You can, and should pay for adverts that show up next to the search engine results when a person types in a search term.  You can laser target what terms you want to show up for and get some great leads from this method.  Alternatively, you may wish to set up your own website so that your prospective clients can find you but that means you will have to get involved, or pay for, search engine optimisation and try to get listings in a local business directory.  That is way beyond the scope of this article but is definitely a great way to find new customers for your fledgling business.


As you can see, starting your own law firm will require many skills, as well as your knowledge of the law, in order for it to be successful.  Calling on other professions is all part of this process and trying to take on the micro management of all these elements is likely to lead to an extremely stressful start or maybe failure.  Good luck!


Apr 27

Lawyer’s iPhone Apps

The iPhone is increasingly becoming one of the must have gadgets in the modern world. Not only is it stylish but also functional. The iPhone has many features designed for the modern professional and even better you can download applications that specifically assist you in your area of specialization. With the busy schedule of a lawyer, you can increase the efficiency of your iPhone using the top rated iPhone apps for lawyers. Below is a short description of the most important Lawyer’s Free iPhone 5 apps.

Pocket lawyer- This is one of the best iPhone apps in regards to legal issues we have on the market today. As its name suggests, you have a mobile lawyer with you. The application offers all the information you need to know about common crimes. You get to know exactly the sentence of the crime and the exact source of the information.

The FBI hand book- This application offers you information on some of the FBI investigation procedures and this places you in a good position if you have to battle with them in a courtroom. Even if you aren’t a criminal lawyer, you may come across a case involving the FBI and it’s better to have some information on some of their operations.

The cliff Maier reference apps- These apps are very helpful when it comes to finding a reference in the middle of a legal battle. There is no need to go about checking for reference the old fashioned way with large legal books. These apps help lawyers to access references such as the constitution, the NY CPL, Patent rules and many others.

Finally, you need to have the case date which is an important app that keeps your entire client’s information in one place. You may be overwhelmed going through paperwork trying to find out which case should be handled at what time especially if you are working with numerous clients.


Apr 25

Is the Internet Changing Copyright Law?

If you’ve ever written a blog or a website, or even posted a useful link on Facebook or Twitter – there is a very real possibility that you have assisted in infringing someone’s copyright somewhere in the world.  That neat photo or graphic you found online added to this weeks blog update?  Did you check you were allowed to post it – or did you just copy/paste/upload image and move on.

Of course in reality, even though copyright is being infringed in all sorts of ways all across the internet – most companies take a pragmatic approach.  There’s little real value in pursing thousands of bloggers or web site owners for posting a picture or video that already exists in thousands of places online.

Companies in some countries did however, aggressively pursue even the smallest infringement. Several music companies in South Korea used to heavily monitor how their material was used on the internet.  They’d trace images and movie files that appeared on forums, blogs and sites then ensure they were removed.  Nowadays they rarely bother except in exceptional circumstances – it simply isn’t worth the effort. Even if you pursue in a country like the USA where law suits are a way of life.

There are still very strict intellectual property laws in many countries across the world.  But the reality is that there’s little a company can do against the torrent of files that are uploaded across the web every minute of the day.  Unless you start operating on the level of the Pirate Bay, chances are you’ll never get any problems with using such content.

It would seem that it’s finally becoming apparent that the business model of these companies has to change.  Selling an album for $20 on iTunes when a quick visit to a newsgroup or warez site can get it you for free is never going to work.  However when the price is much lower, people tend to stay legitimate with their purchases.

You can still put some protection up for material uploaded.  Most people have come across the – video not available in your country messages which show that content is being restricted to specific countries – more examples here –   But the amount of resources required to keep track of every uploaded copy is simply not cost effective.  The clever companies are realising that such copying can actually be used to their advantage – perhaps like the incredible success of the ’Gangnam Style’ videos which have spawned a host of imitators to create a global phenomenon.

Apr 01

The Law and The Internet

Every once in a while we see an interesting question as it related to the law.  Frankly, I know most of you think that we’re going to be talking about California’s contentious Prop 8 here, but I think even though Gay Rights to Marry might not be settled case law now, it is IMO at least, only a matter of time given that 70% of the population under the age of 35 think those rights need to exist.

Instead, I wonder if the internet is a basic human right.  What do you think? Does the internet belong right there with water, cleam air and much more that we have all depended on for centuries and even millenia?

How long before we can consider the internet a basic human right?

Mar 21

Cycling and the Law


Cycling is a great activity whether you are doing it professionally or recreationally. It can provide a great adrenaline rush, help to improve your mood, or be the ideal way to relax. However, with the rise of traffic accidents recently, it is also important to familiarise yourself with the rules of the road and the complex cycling laws.

For example, if you are cycling in the UK, you must ride with lights, one red on the rear and one white on the front, fixed, working, and operating on your bike during the hours of darkness. It is an offence if you do not. Also, it is an offence to ride on a public footpath that does not have a dedicated cycle lane, but it is possible to cycle on a bridleway. It is rules such as this that make it difficult to become comfortable with the different laws that govern cycling.

Similarly, if you go cycling abroad, it is vitally important that you find the rules and acquaint yourself with these before you start out on your bike.

Of course, many of the accidents that occur on our roads are not always caused by cyclists acting in a negligent way. It can be that another road user has jeopardised your safety by not paying attention, for example, a driver not checking their mirrors before changing lanes. It can be helpful to familiarise yourself with the rules of the road for other users just in case you feel yourself needing to rely on these in the event of an accident.  

Be sure to check out the relevant laws, it will pay off in the long run.

Mar 21

Lack of Support for New Teachers

The Welsh assembly are desperately trying to improve educational standards in Wales.  However there are multiple issues which seem to be causing problems.  The latest is the delay in implementing a new mentor system that was designed to help new teachers.  The scheme was supposed to take place this school year but six months in and no mentors have been appointed at all.

As a teacher who used to work in Wales the education policies for my home country fill me with worry.  There seems to be an endless stream of plausible sounding policies and initiatives.  Yet for each one there seems to be a problem or obstacle to stop it.  Prior to this scheme there was another one which provided funding for schools to appoint their own mentors to help new teachers but again this was scrapped in 2012.

New teachers are in a very vulnerable position, it can be a very stressful time and many teachers drop out after their qualification.  The investment in these young teachers is then lost and who knows what is the impact on the pupils of a stressed and struggling new teacher.

The Welsh government seem to be good at coming up with initiatives but little skill at implementing them.  It is imperative that mentors are recruited in order to help teachers in there vital first year.  There is some mentoring being implemented but this is only due to the schools themselves taking the initiatives, they are providing mentoring from head teachers withing individual schools.  This unfortunately is not a solution and is certainly not being implemented across the board.

More and more teachers will drop out without doubt unless this is not corrected.  I haven’t taught in Wales for ten years now and in fact I am online able to keep up with events through the internet.  I am able to watch the UK and Welsh news through using this site – which helps me watch British TV on the internet from abroad.

Additional Update – For iPad users – use this link

Mar 21

Moving Advice

Obviously when you are moving house you will need to get legal advice and representation to make sure everything goes through correctly, the same can be said when you are selling your house. The process can be difficult and stressful enough so making sure you have good legal advice is extremely important in putting your mind at ease.

It is just as important to endure you have a high quality estate agent ensuring that you have the best opportunity of selling your property as well as looking out for the kind of property that you want to put a considerable investment into and call your home. Indeed, it is an exciting time for many whether it is your first property or you have been through it all before but it can all turn sour without the right people in place.

Mistakes can be made but when it comes to property mistakes tend to be extremely costly which is why people tend to do a bit of research and look for recommendations before deciding on the people that will help them through this complicated time. Making sure you can look back on the process without regret is something that most people will be happy with.


Mar 21

Stressed Out Lawyers Should Take Up Gardening


If you’re a lawyer, you probably know that you were going to be taking the career path of one of the most stressful jobs. The job of a lawyer is quite difficult, and can be a hassle, even though the pay can be very rewarding. What you can do to lower your stress of your job as a lawyer is to take up gardening. Silly, right? Well, it truly can do wonders for your stress, as it’s one of the activities that can be very relaxing.




If you have the spare money to do so, it would be beneficial to look into greenhouse gardens. With a greenhouse garden you’re in full control of the atmosphere and the environment for your plants. This means that it doesn’t really matter what plants, fruit or vegetables you want to grow, because the atmosphere of the greenhouse garden is all yours to control. Not only that, you’ll have an escape from the outside world where you can be truly at peace and forget about all of your duties as a lawyer for at least a couple of hours.


 Whether it’s a greenhouse garden or a normal garden, the activity of gardening can help you be at peace when you need it the most. There’s just something about tending to plants and interacting with Mother Nature that’s soothing for a lot of people. The plants will be like your own offspring, as you care and nurture for them until they grow for you and provide you with nutrients and food.


 If you decide to plant your plants within a greenhouse, then you’ll shield them from problems like rough weather, such as storms and hurricanes, and also serious seasonal pest infestations. Protect your plants better within a greenhouse garden, and allow yourself to a getaway from the day’s troubles.


 The greenhouse garden is also an optimal environment for growing plants. You’ll enhance the growth of whatever you decide to plant, as you can give it whatever level of heat and water vapors you need to maintain their warmth and humidity. By taking this up as a hobby, you’ll be responsible for the death or life of your plants, and you’ll have something to emotionally invest in that doesn’t involve the personal lives of others. Lawyers know that they need a hobby or two to cope with their stressful job, and this is one of the healthiest hobbies out there. It will definitely keep you away from some hobbies that you may develop that you didn’t want to in the first place.Find a good selection of greenhouses at


 One of the best things about a greenhouse garden or gardening in general is observing the growth of your plants. You’ll be proud to know that you had a hand in the successful growth of your plants, and feel better about yourself because you’re contributing to a healthier environment that’s usually overrun by carbon dioxide and fossil fuels.

So, if you’re a lawyer, consider taking up the hobby of gardening. You more than likely won’t regret it.


Mar 21

The Web Design Pricing of Educational Websites for Doctors


Becoming a doctor is not easy. After they have graduated from college with a medical degree, they will have to pass an exam to become licensed medical practitioners. They also need to specialize in medicine, and that specialization will take years to complete. In addition to all that, doctors also have to be constantly aware of current advances in medicine. You can help in their education by putting up an informational website, although the web design pricing will be influenced by the scope of your site’s coverage.

An Educational Assistance Site for Those Reviewing for the Medical Boards

There are many fresh graduates studying for the medical boards—different states often give their own tests for those who want to practice inside their borders—and your site can either give information which can help everyone on a general level or information specific to a particular state board exam. Such assistance can help students prepare for the state medical board exams more effectively, and also has the fortunate side effect of producing better doctors as well. Sample tests may increase the web design pricing, but they can prove invaluable in educating future doctors.

Current Events Monitor

Your site can also help doctors who are already licensed by making sure that they are apprised of all notable news concerning their particular specialty and in medicine in general. Doctors traditionally read medical journals for this type of news, but doing so often takes a lot of time. Your site can save doctors precious time by featuring links to various important articles in one page. The web design pricing may depend on how many specialties your site will focus on as part of its service.

Mar 21

Linking Economics to the study of Law


As is the case in the link between Cordyceps and holistic health, the relationship between law and economics goes far beyond what many people know. The principle understanding here is that law influences economics, as is it does in most disciplines, but the fundamental question here is-does economics influence law? The scope of economics is factored around the socio-economic ethos of any particular society. The elements of these societies are then magnified through global trade and other factors that see this country interact with other economies of scale.

The industrial structure of a country is known to have a direct impact on the shape of policies based on the strength of the specific economic institutions. The verdict here is; economics, when put in perspective, forms the basis of the study of law, by any stretch of the imagination. Policy instruments are all shaped by economic factors, and it takes its principles of practice from the study of law as a significant influencing factor.

An example of a similar kind of link would be, as earlier mentioned, the study of nature as an element in the study of man. The use of other forms of life that is in direct interaction with human life and the way they assist in maintaining and assisting man’s overall well being. Consider the use of the Cordyceps sinensis fungus to treat diseases and improve bodily function, or the study of plant life as food alternatives. Research is all about interconnectivity between disciplines, thus, in a similar capacity, the study of law is heavily reliant on economic factors.

This is not the end of it. When you consider that the study of any discipline is interlinked with other areas of study, then you will come to realize that the bar does not stop at economics and law. The study of economics itself takes on an element of anthropological study. The study of man and his interactions with nature are a crucial part of the entire program, and, as such, is involved in the fine print of the curriculum. When it all comes down to it, for you to master any discipline, you require at least some entry level knowledge of about a dozen other related fields of study. It sounds exhausting, but at the same time, it is just as equally fascinating.

You will find, in many cases that crime is the direct effect of economic strangulation, and thus, it is two shades short of impossible to separate the two fields of study.


Mar 21

Lawyers Are Out Of Control

Lawyers are everywhere and it can be successfully argued that they play much too big a part in our society. Our health care system, for instance, is collapsing on itself much because of lawyers and people who sue doctors for extravagant amounts of money. Even in the stock market, where we recently had a botched Facebook IPO, investors have sued the NASDAQ exchange and other entities trying to get money back. So many people were trying to buy Facebook stock and it got so much publicity that something went wrong and the end result is that lawyers get involved. Crazy!

Another example is the upcoming general election in the United States. Both sides have an army of lawyers waiting to pounce should they be needed in a close election. In the Bush – Kerry election, lawyers played a pivotal role in deciding the final outcome. One can honestly ask why this is happening and how it can all be stopped?

People today are very aggressive. It seems they are much more aggressive and angry than they were in years past and thus the “need” for lawyers. Since everyone is ready to sue at a moments notice, it has become a situation where you might have to employ a lawyer just to defend yourself. Our society is fractured and increasingly people are using lawyers to try to hurt others under the guise of protecting their rights. 

Of course most lawyers love it as it all means more business for them. Our law schools turn out more lawyers than ever before and in the end it all sucks money out of our economy with nothing being gained. Ultimately it is not the lawyers fault as much as it is our fault, our whole societies fault that this is happening in the first place. 

Mar 21

Illinois Propose a Stupid Internet Law

There are few areas that can rival the number of ill conceived and downright stupid laws as the internet.  It’s certainly fertile ground for policy makers especially when you consider that many internet laws are completely unenforceable.

So step forward the latest offering being drafted in the Illinois State Senate, to completely eradicate any form of anonymity online. The method is to force any webmaster to remove any comments posted which don’t have a recorded IP address and a verified real name attached to it.

This mindless piece of legislation is to be called Internet Posting Removal Act and just in case you think it’s a joke, the status is here – SB614. The act will provide that the webmaster shall remove any comments by an anonymous poster unless they agree to attach their names to a post and confirms their address, legal name and IP address.

This is supposed to cover forums, web sites, blogs, message boards and any other webpage where people can discuss anything. The webmaster should also provide forms and contact points where people can request such removals or verifications.

The first point that occurs when you read the bill (go and I dare you), is that those people drafting it have very little idea of how any of this technology works.  I’m sure none of them have much idea about how a proxy or VPN works – hint try this link. Or how easy it is to modify and hide your real identity. The amount of people using security software, proxies or VPNs to hide their location just so they can watch the BBC or Canadian TV in the US for instance.

How any poor webmaster is going to verify real names and addresses to every poster on their site is a complete mystery.  It’s nonsense on so many levels, but the sheer scale of what they are suggesting is hopefully the first block that means this madness will never get out of Illinois. But just in case stay vigilant because if the Internet Posting Removal Act makes it to the senate then truly anything however ridiculous is possible!

Joe Jenkins

Mar 21

Teaching New Winemakers

teaching winemakingTeaching is clearly one of the most important jobs that any of us have.  Be it as a parent, or as a husband, uncle or neighbor-we are all put into positions on at least a daily basis where we can teach someone something.

One thing I’ve found is that less industries are willing to have people teach the next generation of people. The wine industry isn’t like that, not at all.  Even today you see companies and high end wineries willing to bring people in during harvest, teach them how to make wine without any real reason for doing so.

If you’re interested in learning to make wine.  Here is a great resource and here is another.  As you might expect, learning to make wine is not exactly a straight forward process, far from it but really you need grapes, some yeast and then some time.

Mar 21

Fresh Out of Law School? Mind You Finances

As a new law grad and starting your first real job, it’s important you monitor how much you’re paying in taxes to maintain overall soud financial management.  A paycheck calculator is a great tool for doing this effectively.

The Paycheck Calculator is a convenient tool for anyone struggling to estimate taxes. These calculators can be found online and act as a guide for people unsure of what action to take when making calculations. These calculations are accurate when correct information is place in the system and they save time. This product holds check information, dates and shows withholding information. The system will calculate gross pay, Gross Salary YTD and also show federal withholding.

The Paycheck tool is an important tool for business owners preparing tools and saves on bookkeeping cost. Add dependent information to the calculator along with any exemptions needing calculation and the program will give an accurate measure of paycheck deductions. The system gives directions to confusing financial tax configurations. Take the guess work out of financial calculations.

While on a job search this gadget will help a user download various information into the tool and estimate future salary on a perspective job. This is very useful when trying to decide if a position is financially good for you. Too many times a decision is made on finance without all the variables included and this can cause difficulty. In this device all financial variables can be analyzed. Use this mechanism anywhere.

This is a fast usa web service useful for so many activities that concern money. Any financial search that includes the necessity to estimate expenditures may find this resource central in making a decision. The paycheck calculator helps to estimate future expenses allowing better planning before entering a commitment that might prove hazardous to the financial stability of a family or business. With all facts in any choice is easier to make.


Mar 21

Law Professionals: Mind your Health!

Law professionals have an abnormally high chance of having hypertension.  Consult this Blood Pressure Chart occasionally to see how your BP readings stack up.

Accessing a blood pressure chart would be helpful to any person that would like to know where they stand when it comes to their health. It is important that you are checked on a regular basis by a medical professional in order to avoid having to deal with health problems for some time to come. Being proactive when it comes to having your blood pressure would ensure that you are able to manage any symptoms that cause you any suffering. Also, you would find that it is possible for you to have your blood pressure taken at a variety of stores all across the United States including many pharmacies. It would not cost you anything, but you would be provided with information that would be very useful in helping you to determine what is going on with your body and why you are feeling the way that you do. Also, you would be able to manage your blood pressure in order to start feeling better with very little effort involved.

When you have a look at the blood pressure chart, you want to be aware of hypotension, this would be low blood pressure. This could lead to blurry vision, confusion, fainting, fatigue, weakness and dizziness. If you feel weak on a regular basis, you want to take precautions in order to deal with the source of your problem. Hypertension means that you have very high blood pressure, this can also lead to a list of problems that would make your life very difficult. headaches, vomiting and nausea can be indicators of this problem. However, your health can get a lot worse if nothing is done to remedy the situation.


Mar 21

Use An Amortization Calc to Pay Down Studen Loans

As a recent grad from law school, you may have large student loans to pay off.  You can use an amortization calculator to quickly learn how your loan payments are distributed to hopefully pay them down more quickly.

Creating a good budget plan is important in order for people to properly address their financial matters. In making an effective budget plan, it is imperative to compute things correctly to make sure that money is allotted for the right things. Computing may sound easy but the truth is, it can be complicated when there are big figures to calculate. In order to make things stress-free, one can use an amortization calculator to compute finance-related concerns.

An Amortization Calculator can be used to compute yearly interest rates for loans. It allows financiers to enter different figures without going through the hassle of computing things manually. Through the help of a financial calculator, time can be saved and fewer errors can be committed.

For instance, mortgage amortization can be difficult to compute especially for those who are not that good in accounting. Through an amortization calculator, things can be done quicker with accuracy. Loaners and financiers just need to know the number of periods, the interest rate period and the present value. As soon as all of these are gathered, it will be easy to know what the monthly payment or rate should be.

On the other hand, it is important to take note that financial calculators do not include insurance and tax rates so you need to gather those pieces of information separately. There are many mortgage calculators online so it is easy to double check if the answer that you have is correct by comparing results using different calculators.

Using an amortization calculator can be difficult at first especially if you are used to computing stuffs manually yet once you get used to it, you will notice that is quicker and better to use a financial calculator when computing lots of stuff. You can look for online video tutorials and articles regarding finance to know more about financial calculators and how you can maximize their use for your mortgage and other money concerns.

Mar 21

Do We Need Lawyers in a Future Society?

Some would argue that lawyers are parasites feeding off pain and misery of others. Do lawyers produce anything? Or are they simply takers? One thing is for certain and that is that under our current economic system, lawyers are a fact of life. Crime is rampant so there is no getting round the need for lawyers as things currently stand.

However, there were times in the past when there was no legal system in place. So perhaps in the future also we will transcend the need for lawyers in our society. Whether we will be around in person to see this is another matter entirely. There are various movements who are proposing not a change to our current systems of government but a change to the entire economic system. A move away from a monetary system towards a resource based economy. One such group is The Zeitgeist Movement – The figurehead is a man who goes by the name of Peter Joseph, Joseph being his middle name rather than his last name.

One of the main arguments of The Zeitgeist Movement is that it is our economic system that causes many of the ills we face in society today. Scarcity is a driver of crime. And if we were to move towards a resource based economy, the need to commit crime would be greatly reduced, if not eliminated. The future society would be a happier place than the world we live in. As things stand, people always seem to be trying to get one over their fellow man. But imagine for a second how things could be if we all realized that our own happiness in this world could be increased if we bettered conditions for all who live on this planet.

It is possible that in the future, a vegan diet will be considered normal – Even though plant based nutrition is currently not altogether accepted, humans of the future may consider the murder of animals to reflect poorly on them, and hence move away from that sort of diet.

Overall, a society where money does not play a part could signal the end of the need for lawyers. After all, if there are no lawyers’ fees to be made, how many people would want to enter the profession?

Jan 30

Teaching Chiropractors

a new chiropractorTeaching chiropractors has got to be one of the most scary things on the planet, doesn’t it?  I was talking to the guy who writes the San Diego Chiropractor Directory the other day (find the site here) and he said almost every chiropractor he speaks with gets a really good laugh about the first time they were allowed to adjust a real live human being.  They all say it was an incredibly scary process and one that they, across the board, can’t imagine having to teach people.  Especially given the fact that all medical professionals make mistakes-how exactly do you train people safely for their first adjustment?

Jan 28

Internet Crimes and China

There has just been an astonishing report released by the State Funded – People’s Public Security University.  It’s actually quite surprising to see any sort of information being released by China about internet crime in the first place never mind the actual content.

It was written by various experts from the University and is based on well over 100,000 cases that were reported over the last year in China.  The report recognised that this is likley to be only a fraction of the actual crimes that have taken place as many are simply not reported.

The main threats inlcued fraud, pyramid selling and the theft of personal information for criminal purposes.  Like many police forces across the world, the Chinese authorities have found that investigating and solving online crimes are particularly difficult.   The sheer scale of the problem in China though is much worse than at first estimated.  The report found that nearly one in three online shoppers had either become a victim of some online fraud or had encountered phishing emails or websites.  The estimated loss of these crimes was over 30 billion yen.

China has more internet users than any place on the planet, well over 500 million users active online.  One of the areas that the Chinese government cite as an issue is the lack of legal support in order to fight these crimes.  This is where many people would beging to perhaps worry about this state funded report, as it strengthens China’s position on introducing new laws on the use of the internet.

China heavily censors and filters the internet feed to it’s citizens and recently introduced new laws regarding persona information proetction.  The worry is that these laws could also be used to monitor peoples activities online.  Many Chinese value their anonymity online from both the criminals and the State.  There are many Chinese who invest in security software and VPNs to obscure their identity and location online like this video demonstrates –

Thanks to Youtube for this video – it’s hosted here – How to Set up a VPN on an iPad
This technology also allows the Chinese surfers access to many sites which are usually blocked by the infamous Great Firewall of China.  However the state is heavily investing in technology to block the use of these security programs.

Jan 06

Education 2.0: The future of the education industry

With web design pricing reaching record lows, the web has spawned the birth of communities and start-ups across the globe. This couldn’t be truer than the online education industry which has exploded due to the proliferation of online universities, with record amounts of students enrolling into online degree programs and auxiliary services that service these education providers. This sudden growth is due in part to two reasons:

1.Learning just got a whole lot easier: High bandwidth as well as powerful computers makes learning accessible but more importantly, interactive. The sharing of best practices and industry insights from learners across the world give the online learner a distinctive advantage over local learners.

2.Learning just got a whole lot cheaper: No brick and mortar locations and firce competition means lower tuition fees for online learners.

3.Technology: This goes hand in hand with point one. The growth of HTML5 and cloud technology gives a distinct, engaging experience that is more “social”. 

These online tools gives teachers like us a wide breadth of options to better educate others while giving us more opportunity to innovate and provide new services that were previously unavailable to us due to cost constraints. The future of education for both learners and educators has never been so bright.

Dec 31

Wine and Beer Running Together

a beer distributorOver the past 12 months, we have seen a dramatic rise in the number of alcohol related lawsuits.  The reasons are pretty clear, lawyers see wine and beer distributors as ways to pay their bills.

Seriously, the industry has been seriously consolidated from about 50 nation wide distributors to only about 5.

For any wine of the month club, that’s a difficult situation to deal with to be sure since it is then difficult to find wine to buy and some other wine that you do find, can’t be purchased because of individual state laws.

Weird right?

I mean, I understand that laws like the beer and wine distributing 3rd party system and how they were created in the 1930’s….but can’t we update them since they’ve been around for over 80 years and really aren’t working any more?

Dec 28

Law and Entrepreneurship

When you first come up with an idea it is an exciting time, you begin to imagine what your business will be like, and obviously start imagining the success that comes with creating an amazing idea. However, you’d be advised to research the market thoroughly to make sure that you are not stealing someone else’s already amazing idea.

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Cast your mind back a few years to the infamous Zuckerberg vs Winklevoss lawsuit. Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg was taken to court by the Winklevoss twins as they argued that Zuckerberg had based the model for Facebook on their site ConnectU at Harvard University. This case seemed to go on for eternity, and although being settled in 2011, there is still a debate about whether Zuckerberg did in fact steal the idea.

Obviously this is an extreme example, but it still highlights the importance of making sure an idea is your own and also giving credit where it is due. If you don’t, it may cost you a lot in the long run.

On the other side of the argument, you also want to make sure that nobody tries to steal your idea, otherwise you may be in for a shock when you come to patent it.   Many of the biggest and most powerful media companies protect both their brands and content strenuously although it is always possible to do some research wherever you are – How to Watch Netflix Abroad.

For entrepreneurs, coming up with the initial idea is an exciting time and it can be easy to forget about these important issues. Hopefully though, you’ll be glad that you did research the market and will not have to face these issues.