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Lawtomatic Newsletter Issue, #115

By Gabe Teninbaum

My name is Gabe Teninbaum (on Twitter at @GTeninbaum).  I'm a professor, as well as the Assistant Dean for Innovation, Strategic Initiatives, & Distance Education, at Suffolk Law in Boston. I'm also a Visiting Fellow at Yale Law School's Information Society Project.  My work focuses on legal innovation, technology, and the changing business of law. Every day, I digest tons of content on these topics. The goal of this newsletter is to curate the most interesting, valuable, and thought-provoking of these ideas and share them with you. 

If you like reading it, please subscribe. You're also invited to forward this to others who you think would benefit. Likewise, please email mewith feedback, ideas, and tips so I can deliver what's most valuable to you.


The Appetizer: Sponsors

  • For law students who want to retain more of what they study (2-4x as much vs cramming) and save time (50% less time vs. cramming), the science of spaced repetition is for you. is a tool to help law students & bar preppers learn more using cutting-edge science.  Called the single most effective technique to learn by the American Psychological Association. Named one of the world's Top 20 Legal IT Innovations by ALM.  More than 15,000 users spread across every law school in the U.S.

The Main Course: 5 Things That Made Me Think This Week​

  • Jae Um’s Great Expectations Series: the Legal Evolution blog is featuring a 5-part series by Jae Um on the post pandemic legal market. Jae explains how we got here, where we are now, and predicts where we’re heading. It’s absolutely terrific, with thought-provoking insights on everything from alternative legal service providers to predictions about what trends might arise in the future. I read this and actually thought it myself “I can’t believe this content is free. People should pay for this.”

  • ABA Legal Rebels Announced: this year’s crop is perhaps the most interesting yet (and it's an interesting group every year). It’s inspiring to see people doing legal work differently...and succeeding at it. Everyone on the list is worth reading up on, and a special shout out to my remarkable colleague, Quinten Steenhuis. He’s done more during the pandemic to promote access to justice than anyone else I can think of. It was also great to see Judge Scott Schlegel on the list, who I've referenced a few times for his excellent work serving the people of Louisiana. Like Quinten, he's shined in his ability to keep things on the rails during the pandemic.

  • MIT Computational Law Course: an annual tradition at MIT is IAP - Independent Activities Period. During this time, members of the community are encouraged to take classes that are for enrichment instead of grades. This opens the door for explorations that can be both experimental and divorced from typical academic pressure. This year, the Computational Law team at MIT is putting on their 6th Annual IAP, and have made the sessions available on YouTube. It’s thought-provoking, fun, and free. Check it out here.

  • ACC Chief Legal Officer Survey: some valuable stuff in the Association of Corporate Counsel CLO survey about what's happening within law departments. Lots of content (it's a 62 pp. report). The key take-homes for me were that this year there has been more interest in adopting new tech products (more than half plan to adopt a new legal tech tool), more belief in the emergence of AI (69% expect its use to accelerate), and 6 in 10 believe new regs and data protection issues pose their biggest challenge. You can download either the executive summary or full report here.

  • Running Your Law Office Remotely: Nicole Black has an excellent new guide on the ABA Journal website for thinking about the law practice management software needed to run a law office from home. Not only will this specific piece by valuable for many people, but I find these straightforward guides refreshing and useful as a general matter. Not everything has to be about enterprise level CLM solutions and eDiscovery platforms ready-built for the AmLaw 200. By making the tools and processes to improve small/solo practice more accessible, articles like this help the legal community, as a whole, improve.

  • Considering Clouds: over the weekend, The Daily podcast put out an audio version of a story they'd previously published in the magazine on a British amateur scientist who, while on sabbatical from his job publishing a magazine promoting the benefits of being idle, became deeply interested in clouds, created a world-wide cloud appreciation society, and was ultimately, through the use of crowdsourcing, able to rattle the scientific community. Here's the print version, if you'd rather read than listen

*** If you enjoy this newsletter and know others who might also like it, please forward it to them.  It's free to subscribe, so the more, the merrier. Author's Note: I'm back for the second semester after being on school break since early December. Did I miss anything?

I also have a REQUEST: will you please forward this newsletter to (at least) TWO people who you think might be interested and encourage them to subscribe if they like it? Making this newsletter is free...but it's not cheap, and your support in spreading word is a wonderful form of payment.


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