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Don’t Go the TL;DR Route in Legal Blogging, Embrace the Experience

Seth Godin, a seminal voice in marketing, today visits the increasingly prevalent “Too Long; Didn’t Read” (TL;DR) culture, which celebrates brisk publishing and consumption over substantive engagement.

In a digital era dominated by shortcuts, this mindset has permeated the legal blogosphere, where the essence of true learning and experience is often sacrificed for brevity.

Ever since there has been high school, there has been the instinct to read the Cliffs Notes. The internet took this idea, added a gratuitous semicolon and perfected Too Long; Didn’t Read. This is the mistakenly proud assertion that we are far too busy and too important to read the whole thing; we skimmed a summary instead.

As lawyers, our training emphasizes thoroughness and learning. Yet, many in our profession, and sometimes their proxies, succumb to TL;DR, offering quick fixes and surface-level insights in blogs rather than genuine writing.

The real value in blogging unfolds much like that of a marathon, not just in crossing the finish line but in the training and running of the race.

Ask someone who finished running a marathon—for many, the moment they crossed the finish line is not the most memorable part of the experience, and for those that find that it is, it only matters because of the tens of thousands of steps that came before.

Legal blogging should transcend the mere act of posting content as a form of advertisement. It’s about the entire process: engaging with others’ writing, reflecting thoughtfully, crafting meaningful insight, and connecting genuinely with readers.

When we lean into exploration, we’re far more likely to find something that matters. Because we worked for it.

Today, when analytics can track every click and view, there’s a compelling temptation to prioritize content that ‘performs’ well in the short term. Yet, true impact lies in content that educates, informs, and connects—content that is crafted through a process akin to learning and growing, not just achieving quick hits.

The creators and consumers that have the guts to ignore the steam still have a chance to make an impact.

How many lawyers are willing make a lasting impact through their blogging?

Sadly, most lawyers will go the TL;DR route as their defense. Not just the defense of saving time, but as Seth says, because it defends them from change and from a lived experience.