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Nipper’s Patent Law Blog, a thumbs up

Stephen Nipper, a lawyer with the Boise patent law firm of Dykas, Shaver & Nipper, has an excellent blog going on Patent Law. Not surprisingly it’s called Nipper’s Patent Law Blog.

I’ve been looking for good lawyer blogs so I can start showing lawyers what they can do with a blog. At the same time, I’ll share my candid opnion about the lawyer blogs I talk about here. We’ll have a little atta’ boy for the good ones combined with my blog review. I am not the be all and end all when it comes to lawyer blogs. I just hope that by following the industry of ‘lawyer blogging’ I will learn a few things, share what I see and that by critiquing blogs advance the cause of lawyer blogging a bit. The Nipper blog will be the first of many discussed here.

This blog is going to work well as a client development tool for Nipper. First Stephen is a good lawyer who is focused in one area – patent law. Nipper’s main experience is in agriculture, the biological and chemical sciences, pharmaceuticals, mechanical arts, as well as with computer and Internet related technology. Through a network of patent attorneys and agents around the industrialized world, the firm routinely represents clients in obtaining patents and trademarks in Canada, Australia, Japan, and throughout Europe.

Second, the blog is limited to the law. Nipper does not mix his personal life and the law. I’m sure Stephen is a good guy but for those who want to follow patent law they do not need him to blog about his life outside the law.

Third the blog is focused. Nipper only blogs about one specific area of the law. If you want people to follow your blog posts that’s critical. As more Patent blogs pop up, Nipper may even want to get more focused covering one of his niche areas such as biological and chemical sciences or pharmaceuticals.

Fourth, Nipper is using RSS. His subscribers, which there will be many in time can pick up his posts in a news aggregator. If Nipper keeps up the work on his blog, there is no reason he cannot be a news-wire on Patent Law.

Here’s some things, I think Nipper could work on as his blog grows:

  • Add an email subscription feature so his viewers who do not have news aggregators on their computers or do not even know what RSS is can pick up posts by email. Looks like he is using TypePad which does not offer that option in their package yet. There is a plug in that’s web based which could be added. In the alternative Moveable Type, the foundation for TypePad could be used.
  • Use the categories. Looks like the categories area set up and it may be that they will be used as soon as their are more posts. That way blog readers can quickly find what they want without going through the archives by date.
  • The look and layout is one of the standard ones for TypePad. That’s fine for today and of course it’s content way ahead of looks for blogs. But in time, as was the case with Web sites, lawyers may want to look for a more professional template.

Bottom line the Nipper blog gets an 8 out of 10 on the blog scale from me.

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