October 30 th 2009 2 Comments Share Email Twitter Google+ Facebook LinkedIn Posted in: Legal Information Legal Information: Libraries & Research Legal Information: Publishing Technology Berring’s Scepticism on the Future of Free Legal Information by Simon Chester More posts by Simon » Here it is on Youtube: some wonderful metaphors. Will the Slaw community do a rebuttal? « Previous: The Friday Fillip Next: 萬維網 – a Web That’s World Wide » Comments Ivan Mokanov October 31st, 2009 at 12:47 pm You can read here a reply from the pioneers among the “volunteers” David Allsebrook October 31st, 2009 at 10:06 pm People trained only in the common law, and who do not spend time litigating, greatly overvalue the utility of finding all the remotely relevant precedent and weaving into a package. First, the transaction costs of solving legal problems are seldom worth it and are beyond the reach of almost everyone. Second, judges make up their own minds about what they want to do, and find a way to do it. No amount of intellectual basket weaving by counsel will overcome that. I could tell you stories, but ask any litigator- ultimately the case is about what the judge says it is about, and there is no such thing as binding precedent. Think about the simplicity of the civil law- in theory there is doctrine and precedent, but the concept that you can have the basic law in one book cuts a lot of Gordian knots and hyper-expensive legal pretexts. And is civil law justice any worse because the entire law of torts is one sentence?”Every person who by his fault causes harm to another is liable” I’m glad scholars are thinking about the law and linking it together, and I appreciate the insights, but the only ones which help when the court opens are the ones which will persuade a judge with a job to do, and no amount of precedent will do that on its own.