By Kevin O'Keefe

New law blog features with Movable Type 3.1

Six Apart has announced the features coming in Movable Type 3.1 due out August 31. lexBlog’s customers, all now on MT 3.0, will all be upgraded to MT 3.1. Without getting into a long list of features only developers will be excited about, here’s the highlights on MT 3.1 that should be of interest to lawyers with blogs.

  • Post scheduling: Allows authors to set a time and date for posts to appear, permitting automatic updates to your weblog. Keep your weblog community up to date even if you?re not at your computer to create new posts.
  • Subcategories: A new category management interface gives you fine-grained control over the organization and display of your posts. You can even easily move a subcategory from one parent category to another.
  • MT-Blacklist: a comprehensive spam-blocking and management system for comments and TrackBacks, with an advanced interface and remote importing of blacklist entries.
  • Notifier: An email notification system which lets your readers subscribe to be notified whenever an individual post, a category, or even an entire weblog is updated. There?s also a complete system for managing subscriptions.

The subcategories is going to be real nice for lawyer blogs. Right now we do a lot of hacking with the design to put in section headings and then subcategories below the headings. The problem is that our lawyer customers can only had categories to one of the sections.

For example on a divorce blog, we may have a section heading ‘Divorce Information’ and then include static content on various aspects of divorce information such as custody, visitation and support. Another section heading may be ‘Divorce News & Legal Updates’.

It’s this later section where our lawyer customers add content on a regular basis. Lawyers could add categories at anytime in the second section but not the first – we needed to add those.

The addition of the email notification feature is interesting. Email notification, much needed until everyone begins using RSS, is already included in MT 3.0. However we have had problems with the feature and were getting to do some hacking to see if we could get it working better for out customers.

I suspect with MT 3.1 the bugs on the email notification will be worked out. Perhaps Six Apart is a little like Microsoft on some things – market & sell to get things out the door and worry about the bugs once customers are using the software.

Bottom line for law blogs, MT is an excellent platform that only looks to be improving.

Kevin O'Keefe
About the Author

Trial lawyer turned legal tech entrepreneur, I am the founder and CEO of LexBlog, a legal blog community of over 30,000 blog publishers, worldwide. LexBlog’s publishing platform is used on a subscription basis by over 18,000 legal professionals, including the largest law firm in each India, China and the United States.

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