Orin Kerr at the Volokh Conspiracy thinks that legal blogosphere has hit its saturation point. He couldn’t be more wrong.
Kerr writes, without citation, that “For the most part this was a year of little growth or even a slight decline among law blogs.”
I thought that was crazy when I read it, but then I saw Dan Solove at Concurring Opinions agree with him. He also did so without citation to any empirical data, other than his group’s own traffic and that traffic has almost doubled in the past year! But, he goes on to say, that the big will just get bigger, and the little niche guys (like me or Scott Greenfield who also clearly disagrees), won’t really go anywhere. He writes, “There are so many blogs that a person can read, and many folks have found their favorites now and are content,” as if the number of blog readers is some static number instead of a dynamic one. His opinion on the future doesn’t even mention the practicing lawyers who are opening up their own internet outposts.
Now I know that real data is hard to come by, so I’m not too critical, but I think these professors need to look outside their ivory towers.
Here is why they are not just wrong, but very, very wrong, and here is what you will see in the future:
First the present, from my own niche: According to Justia there are 33 New York blogs. The ABA Journal‘s Blawg Directory lists 41 New York blogs. According to the ABA, however, there are 147,096 lawyers in New York. I, for one, see a bit of room for growth with that disparity.
But wait, there’s much more. The New York State Trial Lawyers Association has about 4,500 members that handle predominantly personal injury matters. There must easily be 10,000 lawyers in New York who handle them (or think they can handle them) as many are not members. Yet I can count on one hand the number of my brethren covering the subject on blogs.
Rather than being saturated, I think the legal blogosphere is in its infancy.
Now here is the future: There are precious few (if any) group blogs for practicing lawyers. The group blogs belong to the law school set. This will change. Someone, perhaps myself, will start gathering in more practicing lawyers for a group blog, perhaps modeled on the Huffington Post (TurkewitzTimes, anyone?) These lawyer/bloggers will be collected through the growing use of listserves, where small practitioners share tips. It is the perfect format for those who want to opine occasionally without the need to keep their blog up constantly. There will be several of these, and they will rival anything that currently exists.
Links to this post:
blawg review #140
the blawg review is a weekly review of the best law-related posts from a variety of blogs. having enjoyed hosting blawg review #103 (the baseblawg review) in april, i eagerly volunteered to host another installment. …posted by Jonathan Frieden @ December 24, 2007 9:16 AM
the state of the – *yawn*
it seems like every month or so, one of these posts makes the rounds [that’s five already; six if you count this. there’s room for two more in my phrase. who wants to step up?] of the blogosphere. can the blogosphere survive yet another …posted by Gideon @ December 20, 2007 9:46 PM