Category Archives: competition

Law Clerk Connection – Legal Work Marketplace

Law Clerk Connection

Law Clerk Connection

Recently I ran accross Law Clerk Connection – a marketplace in which “clerks” (and presumably paralegals and maybe lawyers) can connect with “lawyers” (and perhaps small law firms or small companies) that need work done. In other words, those who need work connect with those who need work done. Readers will remember that I’ve documented attempts to bring such a marketplace to life, including Lawrex – a referral trading site created by my collaborator and blogging subject Krieg .

The founder of Law Clerk Connection, Laurel Edgeworth, who studied both anthroplogy and business, describes it as an attempt to supplant a bad business model with a good one (sound familiar?). Specifically, says Ms. Edgeworth

The traditional model of the prestigious big firm with high over-head has actually begun to stifle the firm’s ability to compete. Companies that could anticipate changes in the market environment and change their model to adapt have survived and succeeded. What I found in studying those shape-shifting companies was that they actually scaled-back their workforce, automated, and diversified. The difference: quick and agile beat out large and cumbersome.

A good observation and well phrased. But will it play in Peoria? The ABA Journal will be carrying a piece on the site and surely it will get at least some interest from various quarters around the country. I’m as eager to find out what happens as you are.

it’s about time (and billing)

Its About Time (and Billing)

It's About Time (and Billing)

Chrometa - Automated Timekeeping

Chrometa - Automated Timekeeping

Join me for this complimentary webinar about time and billing

Thursday, June 18, 2009
2:00 PM Eastern/1:00 PM Central/12:00 PM Pacific
sponsored by Chrometa

Lawyers underestimate their time by 25% due to bad recording habits, disorganization, and bad management. Enroll in this complimentary webinar and learn how to:

– Capture activities that you’ve been missing
– Create a back-up for time-keeping purposes
– Find out what you do most (and least); and
– Maximize billiable time by minimizing waste

Have your questions answered live by our panel.
Mazy Hedayat – Legal technology writer and practicing attorney
Kristi Royse – Speaker and legal time management and billing expert
Brett Owens – Software entrepreneur, CEO and co-founder, Chrometa

Sign up here.

ABA TechShow: The Video

Live from TechShow 2009 ...

Live from TechShow 2009 ...

 

Thought I’d share some choice video from TechShow 2009 featuring all 4 of the Best of Show winners that I wrote up in TechnoLawyer, plus interviews with some of my heroes such as Bob Ambrogi, Jay Funeberg, and Kevin O’Keefe, as well as sightings of legal blogging all-stars like Dennis Kennedy and Tom Mighelle. I’m still excited.  

 

See related videos here and find me on YouTube as practicehacker

ABA TechShow 2009 – Short and SaaSy

Were the ABA Damnit!

We're the ABA Damnit! We own you!

This was my 10th year at ABA Technology Show in Chicago. This year was particularly cool.  Here’s why:

Meeting The Heavies: To me, seeing people like Dennis Kennedy, Tom Mighelle, Bob Ambrogi, Jim Calloway, Kevin O’Keefe, Brett Burney, Andy Atkins, Jay Foonberg (!) and the rest of my pretend blog friends … I mean pretend LinkedIn friends … is like reconnecting with long lost relatives. Exciting and a little intimidating. But all of them were really great and down to earth. Except that Kennedy. Such a prima donna. I kid, I kid.

Meeting Canadians: Who can forget meeting the Great Librarian of Upper Canada! Beat that. Then there was Phil of the Future (my name for him), Steve Matthews (nice guy), Brett Burney (I think he’s Canadian), Dominic Jaar (vive la Quebec libre!), the boys from Clio (or as I called them, the Booth Babes), and a host of other talent from the Great White North. It was great to meet you all: now go back where the ice doesn’t melt until July.

Technology Becoming Accepted: This year for the first time in memory I noticed a preponderance of grey hairs and the careful gait of partners scoping out potential buys for their offices.  This was not the brash, flash-in-the-pan TechShow of the late-90’s in which the Internet was decried as a fad.

SaaS, Saas, and more Saas: Software as a service was all over the place, and by next year it will be pervasive. This year I was knocked out by the number and variety of kick-ass SaaS providers at the show including Clio, RocketMatter, and VLO Tech. Clio was my hands-down favorite for a number of reasons – I intend to use it in my own practice. Whatever your cup of tea, the idea of throwing away the IT department in favor of the Cloud is gaining traction fast.

Less is … Less: One lamentable fact about this  year’s show – there was less of it than I’ve seen in a long time. Another casualty of the economy I’d say, but we shouldn’t overlook the fact that many legal technology vendors have been slaves to profit instead of boosters for innovation and the slow economy is making it painfully apparent what a royal screw job they’ve been giving lawyers all these years. Many players couldn’t make it ? Good riddance to bad company.

Other than that however, it was a great experience as always and one that I heartily recommend to one and all. If you haven’t been to TechShow, go there. If you have, come back. A splendid time is guaranteed for all.

For more coverage see my SmallLaw Column in TechnoLawyer.

Check out Twitter coverage of TechShow.

As always, I’d love your thoughts. E-mail me at mhedayat[at]mha-law.com or tweet me @practichacker.

ttyl 🙂

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!

Do you give free advice?

As I wrote in this piece the Q&A forum is a time-honored form of online marketing.  Take Avvo for instance. I recently came accross this post criticizing its “Avvo Answers” feature, as well as this equally persuasive response.  All this got me thinking: should we give free legal advice? Do  you?

The ABA gets it … right?

legallyminded

I’m not easy on lawyers when it comes to our use of, appreciation  for, or attitude towards technology. We are not open-minded or fair when it comes to new ideas: most of us either have too much to hide or are flat-out scared.

And even money says that 100% of lawyers over 40 (including judges, legislators, and influential practitioners) see the Internet as a cross between the Yellow Pages and a virtual red-light district.

So I can’t imagine what possessed the American Bar Association to field legallyminded – a do-it-all combo site consisting of wikis, blogs, articles, social-networking, and … who knows what’s next? So much about this site is uncharacteristic of the legal profession and it’s flagship professional organization that I hardly know where to start. But I’ll tell you this – I’m impressed.

That’s right: this isn’t sarcasm. I’m serious: this site is a great attempt to pull our profession into the  next iteration of the Internet and the universe of new communication world of new media and rapid communication. How it fairs remains to be seen, but even trying earns the ABA my respect. Check out legallyminded here.