Archive for February 5th, 2009

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Nick Holmes, writing in Binary Law discusses Twitter and whether anyone will be using the #legalitshow tag.

I just had to comment on his post and did so as follows:

Nick – Re the #legalitshow

It won’t take off for the following reasons:

(a) UK Bloggers, the main UK lawyer users of Twitter, tend to use / abuse Twitter for their own chat and occasionally to promote blog posts.

(b) UK lawyers are not avid users of blogs or Twitter (There are, in fact, very few UK lawyers on Twitter)

(c) UK lawyers are behind the curve generally when it comes to blogs, Twitter and other social media – perhaps because they have not embraced IT with much enthusiasm compared to US, Canadian and other lawyers?

(d) UK lawyers are too busy making money or worrying about their jobs to be bothered with blogs et al.

(And one may add that UK lawyers are not that interested in legal IT and tend to leave this to the IT/Library/Information services  gurus at their firms?)

I think that UK lawyers are missing a lot by not engaging with the blog world (Twitter is less important for hard content) because there is a wealth of excellent knowledge and information out there on the blawgosphere, UK – particularly from the States, and in Canada, Australia etc of relevance and value to UK lawyers.

Their loss? Yes.

You and others do their best to promote blogs and inform – but if UK lawyers want to continue to read out of date news in Trade journals or continue to fill their minds with who is doing deals with whom… and keep their noses firmly to the insular grindstone of UK legal work – you can’t really force them to do otherwise.

Very few of my friends at the Bar or in legal academia even know what a blog is, let alone Twitter. I find it astonishing that legal academics, in the main, are completely unaware of the blog world and the value (to their students at the very least) of the content in the many excellent legal blogs out there.

What can be done? Very little, I suspect. I’m not that impressed by the insularity of the academic world on this. They bleat about not being able to publish to advance their careers (because of the diminishing number of legal publishers), yet are not prepared (as some do to great effect) to lift their eyes off their limited horizon and actually self publish or, perhaps, form a collective blog and work with other academics of a like mind in the same field. Conflict of Laws.net and IPKat come to mind as excellent examples of collaboration and authoritative peer reviewed legal analysis.

Legal education, I fear, to go slightly off point, is becoming more and more of a factory for the profession – and some universities appear to be joining the “Let’s dumb it down and process the meat school of thought”.

There we are….. I have not advanced the cause of human knowledge one iota by this comment – but I feel better and it is now time for coffee.


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