A snappy 10 hour flight yesterday and I was back in Seattle from London where I attended the Legal Geek Law Tech Conference, met with law firms and introduced LexBlog to The Law Society.

I said it last year, and this next year I’ll follow through on it — that being to get to London, regularly, to expand LexBlog’s international reach and influence.

It’s important not only for LexBlog to expand markets globally, but for LexBlog to evangelize the cause of legal blogging, worldwide, for both the democratization of legal publishing and making legal services more accessible. 

The UK, and I suspect the rest of the world, is dealing with the same crisis in access to legal services as the States. Lawyers/solicitors are becoming irrelevant to the majority of consumers and small business people. This erodes not only citizens’ legal rights but the very business of lawyers. Legal blogging establishes trust and communication between lawyers and people narrowing this divide.

UK based large law firms and lawyers in these firms are struggling with how to effectively publish through the net for business development and building a name. Many are blindly publishing content, pushing it out and hoping something comes of it for business development.

Most large firms are using, some knowingly, others not, antiquated publishing software that’s not being updated on any regular basis.

LexBlog has the opportunity to help these firms with our managed WordPress publishing platform. We could save them money and time, improve security and performance, improve ease of use, increase syndication/visibility and enable integration of their blogs and other publishing with their websites – all without delayed website development limiting regular updates and feature enhancements.

The Legal Geek Law Tech Conference was nothing short of amazing. 2,000 attendees from 40 countries, 100 speakers across multiple stages, countless legal tech companies displaying their solutions in booths set up in a down to earth garage like setting, and legal professionals from large firms, small firms and major companies. 

Beyond the educational side, the networking opportunities at a European conference are outstanding. Chatting with lawyers, legal tech entrepreneurs and executives in major companies from the UK, Spain, Norway, Switzerland, Singapore and other countries is something you don’t get at U.S. conferences. 

Talking to people from overseas not only leads to relationships for business development, but also gives one a different perspective on the law, legal services and legal technology.

As a result, just today, I was introducing, via Twitter, a Swiss legal tech company founder to the general counsel of a highly successful and heavily funded U.S. legal tech company.

I wanted to meet with folks with The Law Society for a few reasons. One to introduce them to LexBlog – what we do and what we stand for. I figured they’d hear about us as we started “knocking on doors.”

Secondly I wanted to see if there were ways LexBlog could help The Law Society and their member solicitors. In that we liberally support good causes, law students, law schools and access to the delivery of legal services, I thought there may be some common ground.

Third, I wanted to get their feedback as to introducing LexBlog’s free legal blogging community and the solutions we offer to UK law firms.

I’ll confess traveling overseas for work makes for an attractive “vacation,” with Mrs. RL and I traveling together. Heck, just walking/taking the underground from one meeting to the next is an experience in and of itself – the sites and the people were great.

One successful lawyer, looking to expand her influence in fashion law across Europe, even met us at the Victoria and Albert (V&A) Museum for coffee and to show us around limited viewing areas.

The scary part in this travel is that I am home for only today before heading out to Boston for College of Law Practice Management and Legal Marketing Association conferences and meeting law firms. Only a 5 hour flight there though.

The cause is good in all this travel — shining a light on legal bloggers, worldwide, and improved access to legal services.

  • One concept that the English & Welsh have implemented– and which has mitigated *some* of the access-to-justice dilemma– is non-lawyer ownership interest in solicitors’ firms. The disaster predicted by the “protect the guild at all costs” set has not come to pass, lawyers still adhere to a stringent code of ethics, and money is still out there to be made.

    But they’re becoming a lot more efficient, because they’ve been forced to embrace innovation and efficiency in a way that U.S. firms have not. What clients cannot do, shareholders *have* done.

    I suspect that blogging will be a way for individual firms to build their reputation, and it may take those non-lawyers with a stake in the firm to push the idea.

    • You’re spot on, Aaron. The parent company of LegalZoom open a law firm in the UK because ogrady the reasons you stated. The efficiencies and accessibility to people worked — and the lawyers working there made more than they would have in traditional law firms.