Posted Dec 01, 2010 08:05 am CST
For news about judges and discussion of their decisions, especially in the higher and highest courts of appeal in the land.
Bench Memos is the National Review Online’s critical look at judges, jurisprudence and constitutional authority from a largely politically conservative perspective. A mainstay of the blog is “This Day in Liberal Judicial Activism,” a series primarily authored by Ed Whelan.
First One @ One First is a more personal, hipper complement to SCOTUSblog. Mike Sacks (who guest-blogged and wrote for the ABA Journal) took his coverage of the venerable court to the line, where he logged what motivates individuals to wait hours on end to get a seat to witness oral arguments in person.
Josh Blackman’s Blog is an almost daily fix for constitutional law junkies. Posts cover con law as if it were a sport, so it should be no surprise that Blackman is the man behind FantasySCOTUS, which boasts more than 5,000 members who can try to predict SCOTUS outcomes.
The Justice Brennan Blog: More than a companion to Seth Stern and Stephen Wermiel’s new biography of the late justice, this is an exploration of how the appointee of President Dwight D. Eisenhower remains relevant decades after he left the court.
SCOTUSblog is the one-stop shop for news and expert analysis of all things U.S. Supreme Court—from lower-court cases causing a stir to oral arguments, opinions and the impact of rulings. Sporting a fresh design, it’s timely, authoritative and comprehensive without being dry or stodgy.
There’s a lot at stake in class action tort cases, and whether the civil justice system needs reform is the subject of constant debate. There are bloggers here from both sides of it.
Abnormal Use: Lawyers at the tort defense firm Gallivan, White & Boyd write informal products liability posts and conduct occasional “Abnormal Interviews” featuring Q&As with law professors. “Friday Links” skip tort law and focus on the rest of the blawgosphere.
One look at Boston Personal Injury Lawyer Blog’s cookie-cutter layout had us bracing ourselves for rote entries about local car crashes. But we found nothing of that ilk here. Alan Crede looks far and wide for content and commentary to back his blog posts in defense of medical-malpractice litigation.
Drug and Device Law co-founder Mark Herrmann said farewell last December. So now posts are more tightly focused on defense-side drug and medical-device litigation than they previously were, and it’s an all-Dechert team at the helm.
Jackson on Consumer Class Actions and Mass Torts: Skadden partner J. Russell Jackson sees the comedy and tragedy in appellate products-liability litigation and pores over courts’ analyses in their latest rulings. Consumer fraud issues as they pertain to advertising pop up as well.
FDA Law Blog: “Given the countless decisions that come out each day in the food and drug industry, it’s tough to separate the wheat from the chaff,” writes Jeff Grizzel of FDA News. “I’m looking for trends, game-changers and reversals of policy, and Kurt [Karst] and Jeffrey [Wasserstein] do a great job.”
“I have a master’s degree in public health. I never thought I’d end up reading a lawyer’s blog day in and day out. I do that with Marler Blog,” writes Bix Weber of Philadelphia. “When it comes to food safety, he scoops the scoop. And he cares. He is, though he doesn’t know it, a master in public health.”
New York Personal Injury Law Blog: Eric Turkewitz breaks news. He was the first to publish a letter from a law firm to a judge in a multimillion-dollar 9/11 settlement case; he also got his hands on a letter with Justice Antonin Scalia’s take on a state’s right to secede.
The Pop Tort: From one post: “We love finding fissures in the conservative movement and its generally disparaging views about the civil justice system.” Here, the plaintiffs-side Center for Justice & Democracy makes strident observations about newsy tort cases and never misses the humorous angles.
A few of these labor law blogs were on last year’s list as well, but not all in the same category. This year we wanted to be sure to spotlight this practice area.
Connecticut Employment Law Blog is where Dan Schwartz asks good questions about employment law raised by new Connecticut laws and court rulings, as well as by social media—which, as he wrote in a recent entry, “continue to dominate the world.”
At Delaware Employment Law Blog, associates from Young Conaway Stargatt & Taylor preview labor law cases before the Supreme Court, post on federal labor laws being considered, discuss social media in the workplace, and note events for Delaware practitioners.
Fair Competition Law: While lawyer Russell Beck covers other labor law issues, most posts address the law surrounding noncompete agreements. Beck has charted out the state-by-state variations in noncompete law, and he’s made the chart (PDF) available on his blog and firm website.
Ohio Employer’s Law Blog: Jon Hyman offers employer-side litigation tips and covers labor law cases that have interesting fact patterns. Hyman’s Friday staple is “WIRTW” (what I read this week), containing links to select opinions and blog posts.
Work Matters: Michael Maslanka covers interesting labor law rulings when he sees them, but he generally looks at the bigger picture, writing about how lawyers can create fair and peaceful workplaces, and counsel their clients to do the same.
These virtual mentors discuss the nitty-gritty about day-to-day practice and share cautionary tales and real-world anecdotes to keep their readers connected to a larger legal community.
Adam Smith, Esq. contains posts by lawyer and consultant Bruce MacEwen that are rooted firmly in BigLaw’s competitive landscape, featuring the latest trends in hiring, compensation, billing and business models.
AdamsDrafting is a regular tutorial on clear writing for lawyers looking to cut to the chase, avoid legalese and simplify contract language for the sake of clients, adversaries and themselves. Lawyers love to debate language use, so it’s no surprise that posts here often generate lively discussions. Editors’ note: On, Dec. 2, 2010, Ken Adams announced that “the AdamsDrafting blog is dead,” and that he is now posting at The Koncise Drafter.
“Avoid a Claim” Blog “provides a running tally of scams directed at attorneys, creating something of a red-flag list for the wary attorney. This is an essential, if often overlooked, aspect (that of avoiding scams) of running a law practice,” says blogger Jared Correia of Mass. LOMAP.
The Careerist is ex-corporate lawyer Vivia Chen’s exploration of the often nonlinear approaches to career success. Posts explore hard truths about who hiring managers are looking for and sometimes the softer side of office fashion debates: Are peep-toe shoes too provocative?
The Client Revolution is where practitioner Jay Shepherd is waging war with the billable hour. With witty, easy-to-read anecdotes and commonsense commentary, Shepherd makes the case for alternative billing.
Law21: “Jordan Furlong is a major thought leader on the topic of the law revolution. His blog is a continuous source for innovative, in-depth concepts on practice management issues, taking the facts one step further to project results and consequences,” says blogger Donna Seyle from Law Practice Strategy.
Lawyerist is a dynamic group blog aimed at supporting better lawyers and better lawyering. Contributors cover everything from advice-oriented career and work-life balance topics to down-and-dirty discussions about use of technology, law practice management and how best to serve clients.
Legal Practice Pro is an engaging, enjoyable advice blog aimed largely at law practice management and lawyers’ use of technology. But it often delves into deeper topics, including personal responsibility and civility.
MyShingle.com: “Carolyn Elefant’s blog inspired me to start my own solo practice over 4½ years ago. Regular posts are written with substantive content and links that make it usually the first stop when I’m reading blogs in the morning.” —Stephanie Kimbro, Virtual Law Practice
Real Lawyers Have Blogs is, like good law blogging, about more than setting up a boilerplate site and leaving it be. Kevin O’Keefe writes about the art of blogging, using social media ethically and effectively, and other legal marketing tips and strategies.
3 Geeks and a Law Blog: “What’s not to love? Research nerdery and industry criticism … written by some of the best and brightest in law firm business development, knowledge management, research, libraries, records.” —Emily C. Rushing, competitive intelligence specialist, Haynes and Boone
22 Tweets houses Lance Godard’s live, often insightful “Twitterviews,” essentially mini-profiles of lawyers who tweet. In 22 tweets, lawyers reveal professional challenges, marketing tips and how to best interact with clients.
At What About Clients? Hull McGuire’s Dan Hull doesn’t pull any punches when he challenges readers to go beyond what’s currently en vogue, take a step back and be sure they’re serving the people who matter most to the firm: clients.
There’s everything here from hard news coverage of the law and the legal industry to a more tabloid-oriented, infotainment approach to covering lawyers and where they work.
Above the Law remains unapologetically irreverent with its sensational coverage of lawyers and the business of law. ATL has added new voices for posts on marketing, small-firm practice and technology. But these contributions pale in comparison to the ballsy musings of David Lat and Elie Mystal.
The Am Law Daily is a primary source for BigLaw news, people moves and business developments. Editors keep tabs on Am Law’s family of legal news pubs to cherry-pick the best stories of the moment. They also use the blog as a way to break news and discuss key issues reported elsewhere.
The BLT: The Blog of Legal Times covers news and goings-on in the legal community both inside the Beltway and far beyond. Veteran legal affairs journalist Tony Mauro anchors the blog, offering keen insights about the U.S. Supreme Court and important legal developments.
How Appealing lacks the bells and whistles of a highly produced blog, but Howard Bashman’s ability to scan for and share news relating to appellate law and practice is unmatched. His posts are a regular source for our Daily News blog posts, and we miss him when he unplugs or heads to court for oral argument.
Law & Disorder is the fast-paced, first-on-the-scene legal blog from the technology website Ars Technica. Posts track developments in Internet law and policy in the U.S. and abroad.
The Wall Street Journal’s Law Blog is the go-to mainstream media spot for quick, reliable and smartly written takes on the law and on litigation that impacts the biz community. Lead writer Ashby Jones plays it straight but isn’t afraid to have a little fun, making posts informative and entertaining.
Legal Newsline is where the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Institute for Legal Reform keeps watch over news and important developments in litigation, as well as court fights over legislation. Posts focus largely on state court actions of interest and their rise through the civil justice system.
Proof and Hearsay: Many daily newspapers have their own police blotter-ish crime blogs that only touch on trials, but this blog of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel really gives Wisconsin’s courts, litigation and lawyer discipline their due.
Wired’s Threat Level doesn’t position itself as a legal blog, but it’s a great source of straight news reporting on breaking stories in the realms of Internet law, intellectual property law and privacy law. Lawyers shouldn’t miss it.
For news and information about law school happenings and substantive discussions about developing case law and legal theory, these profs keep readers in the loop without putting them to sleep.
Brian Leiter’s Law School Reports: Drexel’s Dan Filler is the new blogger on the block, joining the University of Chicago’s Leiter to keep the legal academy on top of law school news, including people moves, appointments and goings-on in administration, plus rankings and data to rival those published by U.S. News.
Concurring Opinions doesn’t shy away from weighty legal theory and con law issues. The dozen-plus authors and guests pull from a broad background of academic interests to draft well-written posts that can strike a chord and draw thoughtful discussion in the comments or on other blogs.
The Faculty Lounge: Grab a chair, sit back and enjoy the banter about legal academia and the musings of the lounge’s 10 primary contributors and their guests. The authors know their stuff, but posts are devoid of legalspeak and instead are inviting and conversational.
Feminist Law Professors have zero tolerance for discrimination at work, at school or in pop culture. Moderators Ann Bartow (U of South Carolina) and Bridget Crawford (Pace) praise and recognize self-identified feminists in an expansive blogroll. And they lead the charge when they see affronts to equality.
Legal Profession Blog “has an amazing output of high-quality posts on disciplinary matters, along with some posts about law schools and other issues,” says Legal Ethics Forum blogger John Steele. We agree that it’s a must-read.
ProfessorBainbridge.com offers a potpourri of posts mainly about corporate law. But Stephen Bainbridge isn’t averse to expressing his opinions about social issues, religion, politics and (possibly his dearest passions) wine and food—recipes included.
PrawfsBlawg is sparse on art of any kind (except the new baby pic in October), but the 11 primary law prof bloggers don’t put on airs. Posts are informal, engaging and lighthearted, especially when the profs are proposing new laws, such as one requiring online posting of all instruction manuals.
Religion Clause offers “the most thorough coverage of religious freedom and establishment clause cases and issues I’ve found. … So many blogs offer so much commentary or attempts at humor that it’s hard to enjoy the substance, but this blog is the opposite of that.” —Glenn Katon, ACLU of Florida
The Situationist draws insights from cognitive science, legal theory, social psychology and public policy. It’s a testament “to the fact that the law has not kept pace with our scientific understanding of the way the neurotypical human brain works.” —Colin Bailey, Legal Services of Northern California
TaxProf Blog: We agree with professor Ann Murphy from Gonzaga that this blog is fantastic. Paul Caron makes tax law (and law prof news) entertaining, even for a general audience. Murphy notes, “One might think you’d have to be a tax nerd to like it, but many of my co-workers like it too.”
Truth on the Market: University of Illinois law professor Larry Ribstein put Ideoblog out to pasture in May to start blogging with several other academics about behavioral economics and give the straight dope about how market forces will reshape the legal profession.
Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog is an invaluable resource for Ohio State University law prof Bruce Johnson, who reads Texas Tech prof Gerry Beyer’s blog daily because it is “timely and greatly assists me in linking doctrine and rules to what happens in the ‘real world.’ ”
These bloggers track the latest to come out of the justice system, and those who practice discuss their day-to-day ups and downs in criminal law.
Crime & Consequences, the blog of the victims rights group Criminal Justice Legal Foundation, focuses mainly on criminal sentencing—capital punishment, criminal defendants’ appeals to the Supreme Court, and the penalty phases of high-profile trials.
Mark Bennett’s blog, Defending People, “mentors young lawyers from coast to coast,” writes Lyle Jones of Covington, Tenn. Some of Bennett’s posts provide trial advice to defense lawyers, and other entries call out Texas politicians on how they’re failing the criminal justice system.
D.A. Confidential: “English chap” Mark Pryor is a prosecutor authoring a law blog—one of very few prosecutors to do so. But he only blogs about cases “in the same way I tell my kids,” he writes, “leaving out analysis, legal discussion, names, dates and, well, facts.” But those posts are still interesting.
Not Guilty: Mirriam Seddiq is a “born-again lawyer” who recently returned to practice and blogging after two years at home with her children. She writes about finding mentorship as a solo, recent criminal rulings, and about moments from her life that have affected her notions of justice.
A Public Defender: “Gideon” writes about Connecticut criminal cases, the plight of public defenders nationwide and death penalty perspectives. He also occasionally live-blogs legal TV shows.
Sentencing Law and Policy: Ohio State University law professor Douglas Berman posts several times a day, keeping “sentencing fans” updated on the latest news stories, commentary, cert grants, rulings, argument transcripts, research and scholarship on criminal penalties.
Simple Justice: Scott Greenfield “has no patience for whiners, entitled millennials, and those who think Twitter and Web design are substitutes for experience and ability,” writes Criminal Lawyer blogger Nathaniel Burney. But “even when he’s seemingly on a rant, you can’t help but feel he’s winking at you.”
At What the Judge Ate for Breakfast, Wichita Eagle courts reporter Ron Sylvester blogs about his beat; some posts are from his “Common Law” series, which includes two-minute videos about the inner workings of the courts. He also live-tweets trials he’s covering from the courtroom.
While they don’t necessarily focus on similar subjects, these (sometimes eponymous) blogs are most defined by the distinct voices of their primary authors.
The Belly of the Beast is Steven J. Harper’s insider perspective—as a recent Kirkland & Ellis retiree—and candid commentary on BigLaw’s increasing emphasis on the bottom line.
Brit Charon QC, known in the physical plane as Mike Semple Piggot, writes with varying degrees of seriousness about legal education and individual liberties in the U.K. And because of the time difference, he always seems to be tweeting about going to the bars while we’re at work.
Jonathan Turley writes multiple brief, newsy and quotable entries per day, with his favorite subjects being constitutional law, criminal law and religious law. We also love his occasional series “Perils of the Press,” featuring TV anchors who lose it on camera.
The Legal Satyricon, aka Marc Randazza, seems to have handed over more of his blogging duties to the “Satyriconistas” of late. But the content still consistently alternates between refreshingly blunt posts on First Amendment issues and frat-boy humor.
My Law License: Brian Tannebaum represents lawyers facing discipline, and his entries are about keeping his lawyer-readers honest and helping them resist the temptation to always accept a colleague’s social media identity as the truth.
There’s just a bit too much Connecticut law news, relevant commentary and anecdotal law practice advice here to consider the Nutmeg Lawyer a humor blog. But read awhile and you will laugh out loud—and start to feel like you know Adrian Baron pretty well.
The Volokh Conspiracy’s bloggers swarm in with constitutional analyses on federal rulings and other news as it breaks. Noteworthy, too, is that six co-conspirators from this dominantly libertarian blog recently signed a law professors’ petition supporting the decriminalization of marijuana in California.
China Law Blog: Law partners Dan Harris (Seattle) and Steve Dickinson (Qingdao) will straighten out any of your misconceptions about how business is conducted in China—and this information feels more urgent than ever as outsourcing and social media shrink our world.
A Connecticut Law Blog “single-handedly changed politics in Connecticut by analyzing the legal requirements to become attorney general. The presumed candidate ended up being disqualified and that … created a domino effect on other races,” says Dan Schwartz, Connecticut Employment Law Blog.
TheCorporateCounsel.net Blog: “It is a great and timely source for finding out what is going on with the [Securities and Exchange Commission] and the federal securities laws,” writes California Corporate & Securities Law blogger Keith Bishop.
At Election Law Blog, “Rick Hasen’s coverage of election law developments seems to be exhaustively thorough, but his insights are nicely succinct and refreshingly candid about acknowledging viewpoints that conflict with his own.” —Lisa Perrochet, Horvitz & Levy
The Jury Room “wraps legal analysis, psychology and persuasion into edible, bite-size chunks,” writes Arlington, Va., lawyer Timothy Hughes. Here, litigation consultants Douglas Keene and Rita Handrich look inside the heads of potential jurors—who are all of us, really—and share what they find.
Mississippi Litigation Review & Commentary: Philip Thomas covers topics relevant to his state’s civil litigators (sometimes beating the mainstream media), including the BP oil spill and the need for federal judges. “He’s not philosophically overbearing and is very thorough,” writes Y’all Politics blogger Alan Lange.
The Not-So-Private Parts: Forbes writer Kashmir Hill covers the wild, wild Web and the growing ways to search for an individual. Posts raise the questions: Should we protect our privacy or get used to being more exposed, and where does the law stand? Hill tracks the emerging answers.
School Law: Education Week’s blog has straightforward daily reporting on state supreme court and appellate decisions related to the rights of schoolchildren. (Full disclosure: Blogger Mark Walsh also does U.S. Supreme Court coverage for the ABA Journal.)
Taxgirl: Kelly Phillips Erb writes chatty posts about federal tax proposals that lawmakers are kicking around, and she gives her takes on whether they’re worthwhile or likely to pass. She also warns readers of e-mail scams claiming to offer tax refunds.
Zone’s focus is on a matter of square miles: This land use and environmental law blog by lawyers at Herrick, Feinstein covers the impact of regulations and local laws on real estate development in New York City and the businesses and WOOFs (well-off old folks) based there.
So much talent and interest in this corner of the blawgosphere merits giving IP its own category. But you don’t need to be in that specialty to enjoy the content on these blogs.
Copyrights & Campaigns: Last year, the Recording Industry Association of America trials consumed Ben Sheffner’s blog. This year the pro-copyright-owner blogger stuck to his original plan: spotting and debating cases of possible infringement in political ads.
We’re letting the IPKat out of the bag. This blog is good for intellectual property coverage—and a laugh. Maybe it’s just because everything’s funnier with a British accent: The authors are based in the U.K., and their multiple daily posts focus on issues on their side of the pond.
Some notable posts for IPWatchdog this year—the 11th for Gene Quinn’s website—include interviews with both Nick Godici, former acting director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office, and current director David Kappos.
U.S. patents are being granted at a record pace, and Patently-O is keeping up. Thousands of readers hang on every post by the blog’s two authors: More than 19,000 receive Patently-O’s daily e-mail, and it’s not uncommon for a single entry to generate 100 comments.
The TTABlog® is “the most comprehensive and most authoritative discussion of Trademark Trial and Appeal Board proceedings,” writes the Trademark Blog’s Marty Schwimmer. John Welch also gives his blunt takes in brief “TTAB Comments” at the end of many posts.
Techdirt: “Mike Masnick isn’t a lawyer, but he routinely blogs on Silicon Valley legal issues. Mike has a rare combination of speed, precision and volume, making his blog one of the most important reads for people in the Internet and IP communities,” says Eric Goldman, Technology & Marketing Law Blog.
You’ll find serious content in some of these blogs, but their pop culture sensibilities or overt humor make them feel like guilty pleasures.
Corporette author Kat Griffin—a onetime BigLaw associate and now a staff attorney at the Media Law Resource Center in New York City—was anonymous until this March. Clothes are still the main focus of this blog, but it also fosters discussions about challenges women face in corporate workplaces.
Law Law Land: A dozen-plus entertainment lawyers from Greenberg Glusker write columns about the legal issues faced by those who want to move and shake in Hollywood. The topics aren’t necessarily timely, but these lawyers’ writing can entertain.
Lowering the Bar: “Hilarious in a very Jon Stewart … sort of way,” writes Nicole L.M. Jurkowski of Southampton, Mass., about blog author Kevin Underhill. “He is also consistent with follow-up. It’s a great way to stay informed about current events, especially the ones you talk about over drinks while networking.”
The Namby Pamby, Attorney-at-Law is a 28-year-old anti-curmudgeon who sees a lot of humor in his day-to-day work life as a civil litigator in Chicago. He’s now also co-hosting Blind Drunk Justice, a Friday podcast with fellow anonymous blogger BL1Y, hosted on the latter’s blog.
The Prime-Time Crime Review: Federal sex-crimes prosecutor (and novelist) Allison Leotta is dedicating her new blog to critiquing each episode of this season’s Law & Order: Special Victims Unit on the basis of what the show got right and wrong from a legal perspective. So far, so good.
The Hollywood Reporter blog THR, Esq. focuses on the never-ending legal issues coming out of the entertainment industry—copyright and trademark squabbles, entertainment lawyers’ career moves and celebrities’ brushes with the law. It’s hard news with a little glamour.
“That’s What She Said”: Ford & Harrison lawyers are now in their fifth year of recapping NBC’s The Office for the purposes of estimating the dollar value of each episode’s potential employment litigation claims. We hope posts don’t suffer once Steve Carell’s Michael Scott departs after this season.
These bloggers are serious about technology and its impact on the legal profession.
Bow Tie Law’s Blog is Josh Gilliland’s take on the “knotty” issues and case law developing around e-discovery. One reader complimented his ability to “boil down complex cases and make them interesting to read.” And yes, Gilliland wears bow ties.
At e-Discovery Insights, onetime IT exec Perry Segal has a platform to explore e-discovery from soup to nuts. He takes a lighthearted approach to an undeniably dry subject and often mixes things up by veering off into posts about his latest trial and musings about e-discovery issues in the news.
FutureLawyer is Rick Georges, a tech-savvy poet/lawyer who carves out time from his solo practice to test and review the latest gadgets, software and technology with an eye toward improving day-to-day law practice and small business management.
Jeff Richardson, aka iPhone J.D., seems to never run out of apps, adaptations and accessories to examine and criticize. NMissCommentor blogger Tom Freeland says the blog “is indispensable for a lawyer with an iPhone because of the quick, clear updates.”
Ride the Lightning investigates the latest issues in computer forensics and e-discovery. Lawyer/consultant Sharon Nelson guides readers as she explores new technologies and reacts, sometimes with incredulity, at the stunning revelations from lax oversight and poor records management.
Robert Ambrogi’s LawSites: Lawyer and longtime journalist Ambrogi takes a critical approach to new and revamped websites aimed at providing services to those in the legal profession. He kicks the tires, gauging how these sites do—or don’t—work for practitioners.
Strategic Legal Technology’s Ron Friedmann covers “project management, legal outsourcing and legal innovation in a way that makes you contemplate what is happening in the industry and what we need to do to keep our competitive edge.” —Greg Lambert, 3 Geeks and a Law Blog
Tablet Legal is where lawyer Josh Barrett is pushing his Apple iPad to the limit, exploring and reviewing new applications—sometimes by request—and finding ways to integrate the device into his law practice.
Technology & Marketing Law Blog: “Eric Goldman writes the best blog there is on U.S. technology law … His blog is opinionated and easy to read. refreshingly, it is also devoid of lame jokes and egotism.” —Struan Roberston, editor of Out-Law.com
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