May 2010


From My Window - May 2010 From My Window May 2010

Governments are always thinking up new ways of increasing their revenue streams. In this country, five-and-a-half million taxpayers support something like 13 million who enjoy cash social benefits. In the long run, this is simply unsupportable. It is critical that efforts must be made to turn the 13 million recipients of other people's hard work into net contributors to the national weal. But before then (if that ever happens) here's another tax, fresh from the agile minds and pens of the mandarins in the Treasury. Seizing upon the alleged problem of climate change and relying on the manner in which some pretty spurious scientific claims have been translated into given fact by aggressive and unpleasant environmental activists, they have hit on a carbon tax to be applied to the motor industry.

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Civil Procedure through the lens of the Bill of Rights The Law May 2010

How much influence does the Constitution have on civil procedure in South Africa's lower courts? In this article we examine one example, namely the applicability of the Bill of Rights to applications for rescission in the magistrate's courts.

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Choosing sides: gender in law The Law May 2010

The law, being what it is, fundamentally requires all its subjects to be either male or female. However, not all its subjects find this black and white approach to gender descriptions appropriate or reasonable.

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Genetically modified foods – friend or foe? Consumer Law May 2010

At the end of Part I (April issue, pp16-17), we left readers with a number of questions relating to genetically modified foods and the social and legal issues surrounding its production and use in South Africa. In this Part, we will address these questions and explain what South Africa's legislature has in the pipeline for both consumers and producers of GM foods.

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Does this mean voetsek voetstoots? Consumer Law May 2010

The voetstoots clause has been a cornerstone of trade since Roman-Dutch times. It allows a thing to be sold “as is" and ensures the seller is not liable to the purchaser for latent defects (of which the seller was unaware). This clause is indispensable in many industries, particularly those of second-hand cars and goods. The impending Consumer Protection Act, however, raises an ominous question mark as to whether the voetstoots clause will continue to be permissible in transactions that are subject to the Act.

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Telkom at the Tribunal Competition Law May 2010

Telkom will soon be appearing before the Competition Tribunal to defend itself against a 2004 complaint referral after it unsuccessfully challenged the competition authorities' jurisdiction to regulate conduct in the telecommunications industry.

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Stem cell patents and the morality debate Intellectual Property May 2010

Stem cell research has been controversial since it first emerged and presents a great legal and moral challenge.

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Google’s AdWords programme gets the go-ahead . . . Intellectual Property May 2010

You want to buy a Louis Vuitton handbag and for reasons of convenience you decide to purchase it online. You are not sure where to start so you do a search on “Louis Vuitton handbag" using the Google search engine.

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. . . and here is another assessment Intellectual Property May 2010

A recent judgement handed down by the European Court of Justice (ECJ) and involving search engine Google's AdWords service may have profound implications in South Africa. Two articles in this section examine the judgement from different perspectives.

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Everyone loves Madiba Intellectual Property May 2010

On February 11 2010, the world commemorated 20 years of freedom for the man who would later become South Africa's first democratically elected president, Nelson Mandela.

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New Rules to the European Patent Convention boost the quality and efficiency of applications Intellectual Property May 2010

Many significant changes to the European Patent Convention are currently underway in an effort to improve the quality of European Patent (EP) applications.The ever-mutating IntellectualProperty(IP) world requires constant changes to adapt and conform to ensure the patent system is fit for its purpose This was one of the issues addressed in a speech by Alison Brimelow, president of the European Patent Office (EPO).1

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A judgement that takes your breath away Platteland Perspective May 2010

STRANGE, but I'd never thought of Bru Jakkals as old: he doesn't seem to change. Though I don't like to ask, I've decided that, judging from his reaction to a recent High Court decision, he's probably at least of pensionable age.

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Words, words, far too many words Not The Law Reports May 2010

Foss-Harbottle J: The applicant is an offshoot from a well-known public speaking organisation. Toastbusters has decided that it is useless to try to teach people to speak well in public. The success rate is minimal. Their laudable aim is to prevent people from speaking badly in public. To that end they have brought this application to curtail the length of wedding speeches. The nominal defendants represent, like dough itself, an amorphous mass of potential, namely bridal couples who responded to the summons published in a number of bridal magazines.

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The road to Kroonstad Prison Financial Law May 2010

Adecision recently handed down in the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) in the matter of McCarthy vs Absa Bank 2010 (2)(SA) 321 SCA deserves attention. It is interesting because of the underlying background and relevant facts, and because of the position clarified by the Court relevant to the contractual relationship between a bank and its cheque account customer, and the requirement that the bank must perform its mandate with the required degree of care, good faith and without negligence.

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Long-term archiving: implications for persistence and integrity Management May 2010

No single data management or storage vendor today has a good solution to help organizations solve the problem of building a long-term archive. In fact, most vendors exacerbate the issues with proprietary products and disruptive, manual upgrade paths." (Forrester, 2 July 2008, “Archiving: Finding Data in 2050")

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