Author Archives: mhedayat

Oh, the humanity!

law firm layoffs continue ...

law firm layoffs continue ...

I just discovered a blog (I refuse to say “blawg”) called Lawshucks that’s done a really impressive job of tracking the carnage created by big-firm layoffs (now a weekly announcement). Here is a set of quick links to their well-designed graphical representations

Follow this link to see the whole post.  Once you sneak a peek you may wonder, as I did, whether these high-profile layoffs are merely normal attrition; or the result of outsourcing; the economic downturn; an excuse to shed sub-standard performers? Or were there really just too many lawyers to begin with? Maybe these big firms have really been bottom-heavy, lumbering organizations and law schools should have applied the breaks years ago when everybody in the industry saw this coming? Any chance of that?

what’s your opinion?

 

Todays Assignment ...

Today's Assignment ...

As many of you know I write a column for TechnoLawyer with Ross “the Boss” Kodner.  SmallLaw, previously “Crazy Mazy” … long story, is designed to highlight small firm and solo practice issues. I have always contributed based on what I thought readers  ought to know and assumed that, being a sole-practitioner myself, I was qualified to do so. But what do small firm and sole practitioners really want to know? I’m asking for your feedback. Thanks for taking a minute to give me your thoughts. – MH

What do you expect from social media?

Courtesy of my colleagues on LinkedIn and the geeks at interactive insights group comes this handy list of websites designed to help measure the “value” of social media (is there any?).

What do you expect from social media such as FaceBook, Twitter, and the rest? Can the reality live up to the hype?


Clio Client Connect – collaboration gets serious

Clio ClientConnect

This weekend at LegalTech the makers of practice management suite Clio launched ClientConnect, a secure portal that will enable attorneys to share documents, collaborate, bill, and take payments in a secure evnironment on the web. And oh yes – it’s free to every Clio subscriber.

ClientConnect very nearly solves the universal problems that plague asynchronous multi-party communication. In other words, with ClientConnect there are no more e-mail roadblocks, mixed signals, or convoluted conversation-threads in the way of attorney-client communication. As a result lawyers can now make files of any kind, as well as time-sheets, notes, and case details available in seconds just by  recording them in Clio or uploading them to Clio’s super-fast collaboration-servers.

The highlights of ClientConnect include

  • document exchange and collaboration
  • clients can audit case activity anytime
  • case notes are now instantly available
  • clients can pay bills in seconds by PayPal

All told both clients and lawyers will benefit from the ability to collaborate in an open, secure, round-the-clock system that requires no software and has a virtual 0 learning curve. For those lawyers still on the fence, the advent of ClientConnect makes it hard to justify not trying Clio’s 30-day free trial.

Twitter and More Twitter!

Can’t enough Twitter? You’re not alone. Herein I present a selection from the 140+ Twitter tools featured recently on Mashable. I’ve highlighted the ones that lawyers can use right away. If you don’t “get” how they can be useful let me know and I’ll post a follow up or explain via comments.

Posting

Brabblr – Post to all your micro blogging services at once Twitter, Pownce, Jaiku, Tumblr, Jabber, Frazr, etc.

Autopostr - This service lets your friends in Twitter know when you post a new picture on Flickr.

EmailTwitter – With this service, you can send tweets to Twitter from a cellphone without incurring SMS charges.

GroupTweet – Allows you to post private message to a group of Twitter friends.

Hashtags – You can add tags to your Twitter posts with this service.

HelloTxt – Update Twitter and a host of other micro blogging and social networking sites with one click.

LinkBunch – Need to share more than one link in a tweet? LinkBunch puts together all the links and provides you one link that you can share on Twitter. As you might have understood, this can be used not just with Twitter, but also with emails, IMs, SMS, etc.

LiveTwitting – Helps you cover a conference live on Twitter. Similar to liveblogging, only cooler.

MicroRevie – Post reviews on twitter accs and this service will turn them into microformats.

Mobypicture – A service to post to your blog and micro-blogging sites like Twitter through your mobile phone.

OutTwit – A tool for Outlook that will send the latest tweets from your friends as incoming email messages.

SecretTweet - Post to Twitter anonymously. If you really need to.

SnapTweet – Allows you to post your Flickr pictures to Twitter.

Snitter – Adobe AIR desktop client for Twitter compatible with Mac and Windows.

Twhirl – desktop client based on Adobe AIR. Impressive features including multiple Twitter accounts, connect to Friendfeed, post image to Twitpic, post to Pownce and Jaiku simultaneously, and search using Tweetscan.

TweetCube – This service allows you to post files on Twitter. Files that can be shared include .zip, .rar, .pdf, .jpg, .png, .gif, .mp3 and .txt.

Tweetr- an AIR based Twitter client for MAC and PC. You can use this to send files upto 100MB.

Twibler – posts your ebay listings to Twitter automatically.

Twideeo – You can post videos to Twitter using this service that lets you upload the vid to their site and then generates a link to your video.

Twit+ – You can tweet pictures, videos, and files using this service publicly or privately among your friends on Twitter.

Twitxr – Another neat way to post a picture on Twitter, Facebook, or Picassa.

TweetChannel – You can add TweetChannel as your friend in Twitter to help you channel your various posts.

TweetLater – An useful service to schedule your Twitter posts for the future.

Twitpic – Share pictures on Twitter using Twitpic.

Twitsay – You can tweet an audio recording to Twitter using this new and popular service.

Twits Like Me – You can use this service to find people on Twitter who share your interests.

TwitterCal – This service allows you to post events from your Google calendar to your Twitter accounts.

Twitter Feed – This tool allows you to send your blog atom or RSS feed to Twitter.

TwitterGram – Post an mp3 on Twitter using this service.

Twitteroo – This is another popular desktop client for Twitter.

TwitterIM – Using this tool, you can tweet from Windows Live Messenger and ICQ.

Twitterlights – This tool allows you to highlight snippets of text from any webpage and send it to twitter. The url of the page also gets converted into a tinyurl and gets included in your tweet.

Twitter Reply – With this tool, you can send your Twitter updates on a secret email address, or through Windows Live Messenger or ICQ.

Twittershare – This desktop/web application also allows you to post pictures on Twitter. Works on Mac as well.

VisualTwitter – Allow you to post pictures on Twitter.

Reading

TopTweet – This site provides you updates from the top Twitter personalities. Yes, it took us a lot of tries to take a screenshot without Scoble in it.

TweetWire – TweetWire grabs the freshest links posted on Twitter and displays them Yahoo News page style.

Twitter100 – Just like in your personal start pages, this tool will allocate a box to each of the people you follow on a single page and display their latest tweets.

Twitterator – Twitterator enables you to follow a group of people at one go.

Twitter Digest – This tool allows you to subscribe to a message stream from a Twitter user of a group of users on the web or through an atom feed.

Alpha Twitter - This site provides you with the top links on Twitter.

Search

Summize - The leader of this space; lets you create an RSS feed consisting of posts responsive to your query.

Flaptor Twitter Search - Simple Twitter search engine. You can get an RSS feed out of your search query as well.

Terraminds - Another search tool for Twitter.

Tweet Scan – This is a search engine for Twitter indexing all the public messages on Twitter.

Twits Like Me – This tool helps you find people on Twitter who share your interests.

Twitterment – Search engine for Twitter powered by Google search.

TwitterWho – Using this, you can search for multiple queries on Twitter at one go.

Twubble – Find people who share your interests and highlight current friends you already follow.

Analytics

TwitBuzz – Follows links, messages, and users on Twitter and displays them nicely on its site Digg-style.

TweetBeep – Like Google Alerts – sends an alert whenever a keyword is mentioned or somebody links to you.

TwitGraph – Provides graphs of your Twitter usage – tweets by day, top 5 words, top 5 links, top replies.

Twitterlinkr – Shows the most popular links being posted on Twitter.

24oclocks - Tweets displayed by the hour of the day.

GeoTwitterous – Displays where the people you follow call home on a global map.

My Tweet Map – Latest tweets from your friends on a map.

Quotably – Check out a user’s conversations in a conversation thread. Extremely useful.

Sitevolume – Like Alexa: lets you see how many times a term has been used on Twitter, Digg, MySpace, YouTube, or Flickr. Add in multiple terms and see bar graphs comparing the terms.

Twetterboard – An analytics service that provides information about popular Twitter users and popular links.

Tweetburner – Tweetburner gives you click stats for the links you posted in Twitter.

Twittermeter – See how frequently a word has been used on Twitter. You can also compare two or more words.

Twemes – Twemes follows Twitter public messages with particular tags to build a meme around a topic.

TweetStats – Twitter statistics including timeline, tweets/mo. and tweets/hr.

TweetVolume – See how many times a particular word appears; compare up to 5 words via bar graph.

TwitterLocal – This tool allows you to generate an RSS Feed of a filtered list of tweets from a certain area.

Tweetmeme – Displays popular topics on Twitter and those people talking about that topic.

Twist – Trends of what people are saying on Twitter (like Google Trends for internet search words).

Twittermap – This tool displays the most recent public updates in the last 12 hours.

Twittermeter – Allows you to compare any keywords used on Twitter on through a graphical interface.

Twitt(url)y – Tracks the most linked to urls on Twitter and display them Digg-style.

iPhone + Others

Twitter for iPhone - Another Twitter client for your iPhone.

iTwtr - This is an open source Twitter client for iphones.

Pocket Tweets – A web based Twitter client for the iphone.

Twittai – A Java-based Twitter client compatible with more than 200 kinds of mobile phones.

ceTwit – Twitter client for Windows Mobile. Not as cool as the iPhone versions, but then again, what is?

Twapper - Send updates from your 30boxes calendar to your mobile phone using Twitter.

TwitterFone – You can update Twitter from your mobile phone using this service.

Qik – Stream videos from mobile phone to Twitter. Works really well.

Utilities

Crowd Status - View the status of friends on one page.

@answerme – Track the questions you ask.

CommuterFeed – Shared traffic reports using Twitter.

Hahlo – if you are not satisfied with your Twitter interface, you can check out Hahlo to manage your Twitter account. It gives you a separate profile page and the rest of the Twitter features in a new look.

LoudTwitter – This tool posts your Twitter posts on your blog. Hey, isn’t Twitter supposed to be some kind of a blog, too? Now I’m confused.

My Tweeple – Manage your friends and followers in Twitter on a single web page.

Politweets – You can check out your presidential candidate’s popularity on Twitter here.

StrawPoll – Sends out polls on Twitter that you can participate on. As they say, you can never have too many polls.

TrackThis – Get updates of your shipment using Twitter. It supports FedEx, UPS, USPS and DHL tracking codes.

Twitterfeed – Posts your blog posts automatically to Twitter.

Tweetclouds – Create a word cloud from a public Twitter stream using this service.

Tweet Clouds - Make a tag cloud from your Twitter posts.

Tweetpeek – You can create a group Twitter feed with Tweetpeek.

TweetWheel – You can find out which of your Twitter friends know each other with this service.

Twitku – Mashup of Twitter, Jaiku, and Pownce public timelines. You can also post from its interface.

Twitpoll – You can participate on polls using Twitter through Twitpoll.

Tweetshots – this service allows you to take your Twitter posts to Tumblr, embed in websites, or send over email.

TwitterAnswers – Combines Twitter and Mosio so that you can send questions over Twitter and have them answered by other people.

Twitter Census – You can create surveys on Twitter using this service.

TwitterNotes – You can create notes on TwitterNotes using Twitter and tagging your notes.

Xpenser – Record your expenses using Twitter. You can also use other mediums like email, SMS, IM, voice, etc.

still a bargain at $1,000/hr

Who says lawyers can’t get good work these days? Take this piece for instance from the ABA Journal:

Kirkland & Ellis Seeks Fee of $18.50 a Minute for Bankruptcy Work

Posted Jan 28, 2009 By Debra Cassens Weiss

Kirkland & Ellis has requested a fee of $1,110 an hour in a corporate bankruptcy, a possible record amount, according to one expert. The hourly rate breaks down to $18.50 a minute, Bloomberg reports. The law firm is seeking the fee for its representation of titanium dioxide-maker Tronox Inc. Two other law firms are seeking nearly as much, requesting hourly rates in excess of $1,000, according to the story. They are Sidley Austin, in the restructuring of the Tribune Co., and Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, representing Circuit City. Bankruptcy law professor Lynn LoPucki of the University of California at Los Angeles told the wire service that fees for lawyers and other professionals in bankruptcy cases are growing at four times the rate of inflation. “As the economy gets worse, the bankruptcy lawyers are charging more,” LoPucki told Bloomberg. “It seems that each month one sets a new record for hourly billing rates. $1,110 is, to my knowledge, a record for the debtor’s bankruptcy counsel.”

And you thought the economy was having problems!

my 15 minutes of fame …

 

My 15 Minutes of Fame

My 15 Minutes of Fame

 

Courtesy of 37 Signals, creators of killer apps such as highrise (their crm application), comes my 15 minutes of fame as their spokesman. You’ll find me right here on their website. And it’s no bull. I’ve used highrise, basecamp, backpack, and campfire to communicate with teams accross the country in connection with pending litigation. Yeah, it works. Not only that, the products are easier to use,  more intuitive, and less costly than anything out there with the possible exception of Google Apps, which I also use. But that’s a whole other level of commitment …