It's been a bit of a up-and-down month in the world of legal publishing and I could choose to write yet another piece on the expected demise of LexisNexis or those lawyers taking Westlaw to court but we all know that those records are getting a bit worn.
But…… thinking about this issue and the amount of articles that have appeared on both these subjects since the new year has made me realize that in the past decade of publishing my pdf newsletter "Law Librarians News" and then subsequently my House of Butter blog ,we've all made huge leaps when it comes to the reporting of the legal publishing industry.
I started publishing Law Librarians News in Sydney nigh on a decade ago. We are now almost 250 issues old!
At the time I started publishing, any information about the sector was either tightly held by management at the major legal publishers or operated as gossip between information professionals at law firms, and even then, only the larger ones.
Library managers at smaller firms were, literally, through no fault of their own "clueless "about the publishers' modus operandi. Except that they knew they were being charged too much for services and couldn't do a thing about it other than to operate in that budget hinterland between publisher and law firm partner.
But a number of factors over the years — including the downturn, technology, social media, a change of attitude in libraries, and also the fact that a growing number ex-publisher employees have been brave enough to write and challenge industry standards — have, in turns, changed the information landscape on the subject.
Not only are there newsletters, blogs and websites but we also note that the subject of legal and professional publishing is also a matter for media in general as well as for those companies whose job it is to analyze market sectors.
Only this past week we saw a report indicating that the global professional publishing industry is to grow 3% over next year ,which made us chuckle somewhat, because only a few years back with growth at around 13-15% a quarter at both Lexis and Westlaw, information like this was not deemed worthy of an industry report never mind a mention in the media.
So, to celebrate this fact I thought it would be worth highlighting some of the writers and publications now regularly commenting on and writing about the industry that I attempt to read regularly.
It's also worth noting that in years past there was a distinctive split between those who wrote about publishing and those who wrote about technology. Although not quite moot these two areas are no longer as divergent as they once were and I'd suggest you'd learn as much about legal publishing in 2012 from Charles Christian and Kevin O'Keefe as you will from my column. Although I probably shouldn't tell you that.
LLN's House Of Butter's Reading List:
- Law Librarian Blog : A Member Of The Law Professor Blogs Network : http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/law_librarian_blog/
- Lex Monitor by Kevin O'Keefe http://www.lexmonitor.com/
- 3 Geeks & A Law Blog http://www.geeklawblog.com/
- Moritz legal Blog http://moritzlegalinformation.blogspot.com/
- Pinhawk Librarian News Digest http://www.pinhawk.com/newsletters.php#newsletter*6*0 ( you'll need to scroll through their endless newsletters to get a sample of this one)
- SLAW obviously !
- I especially enjoy reading anything by
- Ruth Bird http://www.slaw.ca/author/bird/
- Gary Rodrigues http://www.slaw.ca/author/rodrigues/
- Robert McKay http://www.slaw.ca/author/mckay/
- LegalPubs.CA http://www.legalpubs.ca/