Archive for October 20th, 2011

The Law Society Gazette: Private equity buys into QualitySolicitors

“QualitySolicitors has agreed a funding deal which marks the first major investment by private equity in the high street legal market, the Gazette can reveal.

Pan-European private equity house Palamon Capital Partners has invested a ‘significant’ sum in QS. The agreement will see it gain a majority shareholding in the company, though it will not have a stake in the law firms which are franchise members….”

Read more…

Dr Erasmus Strangelove, senior partner of Muttley Dastardly LLP,  was much taken by the news today that private investors are buying into Quality Solicitors;  so much so – not one to miss an opportunity to add to the prosperity of The Partners – he will launch a new ‘Brand’ on Monday:  The SS – SeriousSolicitors.

And so… back to the world of the law blogs.

First up a new blog by Paul Bernal Lecturer in Information Technology, Intellectual Property and Media Law at the University of East Anglia: The Symbiotic Web blog – a blog specialising in privacy, autonomy human rights and the web. I am not anonymous.  I may be pseudonymous.. but Paul Bernal draws attention to important issues in his latest blog post – Privacy is personal…

With my surreal plan to tour the UK next year in a van and live in a tent, I won’t have too much need to consider the finer points of housing law – but for those who do, Nearly Legal – a specialist Housing Law blog – is a very useful resource: Turning up is usually the best idea.

Not housing law, but Landlord & Tenant law, long time blogger, solicitor Tessa Shepperton, provides insight into an issue which may well come to be a problem for many landlords as the financial gloom continues: How can I evict my non paying tenants?


“Every law is an infraction of liberty.”
Jeremy Bentham

It always struck me as ironic when I was teaching Jurisprudence some years ago that Jeremy Bentham – Exhibit A and stuffed in a glass case at University College London – English jurist, philosopher, and legal and social reformer, enjoyed a sideline in prison design.

Wikipedia informs: “The Panopticon is a type of building designed by English philosopher and social theorist Jeremy Bentham in the late eighteenth century. The concept of the design is to allow an observer to observe (-opticon) all (pan-) inmates of an institution without them being able to tell whether or not they are being watched.”

And with that… a smooth segue to The Panopticon blog: A blog about Information Law, maintained by 11 KBW’s  Information Law Practice Group, led Timothy Pitt-Payne QC and Anya Proops.  I like the style of using a ‘ripping header’ to attract attention.  The Panopticon blog does just that with this post and admits to the ‘wheeze’ : THE IDENTITY OF JACK THE RIPPER

And since I am a segue kind of a guy…. over to Inforrm’s blog – a very useful port of call on media law  – where they consider this week: News: “Press Regulation” – the Lord Chief Justice steps into the debate and Judgment: Trafigura v Guardian News and Media

Former practising barrister Amanda Bancroft insists that she is not a law blogger.  Could have fooled me – because her Beneath The Wig blog does a pretty good job of dissecting some of the more troublesome legal issues.  I’ll provide an example to support my case: It’s not just ‘them’, it’s you and me too. I’m delighted that Amanda will be a regular on our Without Prejudice podcasts.

Continuing obliquely with the information theme, solicitor Michael Scutt has an employment law blog (Jobsworth)  – but he is also the founder of UK Blawg Roundup – a quarterly review of UK law blogs.

Nothing Like The Sun is a new law blog by Francis FitzGibbon QC of Doughty Street Chambers.  It is good to see more practising lawyers taking up law blogging.  This can only add to the richness and variety of FREE analytical material for lawyers and non-lawyers available on the web.   In the light of recent riots, I enjoyed reading his blog post: The Scarman Report – 30 Years On

Alex Aldridge, a journalist specialising in law and education, has his own blog and, pleasingly, has taken up podcasting – Round my kitchen table: Tesco law – stacking shelves by night, giving legal advice by day?
David Allen Green, a practising solicitor, blogger and a journalist who writes for The New Statesman and The Lawyer on a weekly basis is particularly analytical when it comes of dissecting troublesome legal issues.  An  amusing example of the genre from his Jack of Kent blog :Breaking the law alone in a room


A spirit, breathing the language of independence, is natural to Englishmen, few of whom are disposed to brook compulsion, or submit to the dictates of others, when not softened by reason, or tempered with kindness.
Joseph Lancaster

One of the advantages of law blogging is speed.  Bloggers can often get onto a topic more quickly than traditional media.  We can also provide an independent perspective, particularly bloggers writing in a private capacity.  We are not constrained by the dictates of a law firm’s ethos or a newspaper’s political inclination.

As to the quotation above – being a Scot, I do not regard ‘the language of independence’ as the sole prerogative of ‘The Englishman’: Nor, indeed, would Alec Salmond.

So with that said… time to look at a few blogs from the land where the Romans did not dare go… for long.

ALBA: Alba is the Scottish Gaelic name for Scotland.

While the blue and white saltire is the first flag of Scotland  – “There is a second flag which is associated with Scotland, the “Rampant Lion”, or Royal Flag of Scotland. Although based on an older Scottish flag than the St. Andrew’s Cross, it should, strictly speaking, now only be used by the monarch in relation to her capacity as Queen in Scotland¹. However, it is widely used as a second national flag.”

I like both flags.. and, in fact, have a Saltire to hand at the Staterooms should I have the need to wave it at any ‘Englishmen‘  who get ‘above their station’ with me!

A few (more to come in future weekly editions of Eyes Only) blogs from Scotland…

SCOTS LAW NEWS is a very good starting point to be kept abreast of law issues and topical matters… from Edinburgh University.

Ian Hamilton QC  – ‘a drunk man looks at the thistle’ is always worth a read even if you know nothing about law…. Typical of the genre: LAZARUS COLLEGE OXON

And if you really want to get to grips with The Lockerbie case…and it may be a good idea for US Senators to do so… then you can’t do much better than this… blog by Robert Black QC FRSE who became Professor of Scots Law in the University of Edinburgh in 1981 having previously been in practice at the Scots Bar.

And from a previous Blawg Review I did.. these blogs from Scotland are also of interest…

Technollama has this warning! The Internet is dangerous

The Firm (Scots law magazine) focuses on topical issues and news.  For another useful resource on topical law matters: Absolvitor (Scots law magazine)

Jennie Law (by a self-styled “Library Monkey” from a law firm in Edinburgh) provides a sometimes acerbic view…

You! Yes, you! So you know a librarian? And you like stereotypes? And you want to buy them something for Christmas that fits in nicely to that stereotype?*

Well, let me help…

WardBlawgG has a look at law studies with: How to study law using mindmaps.

Scots Law Student (life and trials of learning law in Scotland) Life of a Scots Law Student (at Stirling)

Legaleaglemhm’s Blog Does what it says on the tin…. “Recording history as it happens – A paradigm shift in communications a new world of Law – help me to document it.”

Alan Tench Public Law and Devolution: The constitutional provisions of the Scotland bill

Legal History blog: Scottish Chief Justice of Jamaica (18th Century) and his Court Reports

Eric Clive’s European Private Law News: Response by Federation of Small Businesses on European contract law

Edinburgh Commercial Law blog: Elf and Safety? A Christmas Data Protection Thought

General updating on Scots Law: Casecheck

I mentioned Lallands Peat Worrier in Part 1 – but that does not mean I cannot mention his enjoyable blog again!

And.. if you need to know everything about SNOW and the correct pronunciation of SCONE… there is, frankly, not better place than LoveandGarbage.

BREAKING: Snow White fails to name all of dwarves

And.. on that high note… I shall end Part 3… which gives me a chance tomorrow morning to do Part 4…

Fear not if I have not mentioned your blog.  I am doing a weekly Eyes Only and I will, ineluctably, cover your blog in time.  If you think that i am not aware of your blog – please do not hesitate to contact me by email


Part 1 and Part 2 of Eyes Only – What the law blogs are up to this week…

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