Advantages of Open Discussion Versus Law Reviews For Legal Tech and Innovation in Academia

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As I wrote yesterday, I attended on Tuesday a worldwide meetup of law school labs/programs harnessing technology and other innovation to improve access to legal services.

Bright people doing incredible things. Many of whom were law professors with corporate, law firm and technology company experience. These folks knew their stuff.

These professors were generating interesting ideas and applications, some of which the other professors attending were not aware of.

More than one once, one professor asked another professor if their paper had been published. In one case, the professor responded yes, just published in a law review I won’t name.

In this case the paper was published eighteen months after the professor was formulating their findings and writing up their paper. Eighteen months.

I am an outsider when it comes to legal academia other than having attended law school and spoken at a good number. So I beg forgiveness when it comes to publishing papers, and their importance. Obviously, the publishing has value.

But why not openly share your findings as you work on your project, via a blog and social media.

  • You get the feedback of great minds, worldwide.
  • These great minds will discuss your ideas across the open Internet.
  • Your ideas and work will circulate across blogs, LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook, the places people (including professionals) publish and discuss things.
  • Your work and project will be improved as a result of the feedback, your listening to the open discussion and your engagement in the discussion.
  • You get buy in of your concept/idea from the people you are looking to get buy in from.
  • Legal tech companies, corporate counsel and practicing lawyers will see your ideas and help you move it along.
  • You get the influencers evangelizing what you are working on. You need publishers, thought leaders and active authorities on social media laying the ground work for the success of your work.
  • Researchers on your work will have a body of work generated by many over eighteen months as opposed to merely one paper, as authoritative as the paper will be.
  • Assuming you need funding, you increase your chances for landing backers. And when talking to backers, they’ll see validation from multiple sources on the net, as opposed to one paper

I welcome other’s points of view of this.

Law reviews versus open law publishing driving legal discussion, in other words, the law, is a hot topic of late.

Seems legal tech and innovation from academia improving access to effective legal services for all is important enough to generate more discussion on the topic.

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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