Eagan’s Eight Rules for Success in Legal Information

Find a niche with growth potential
Organize information to make it useful
The internet is a distribution channel — not a product
Turn words into maths
Separate the signal from the noise
Computers can’t do everything
Treat content like patented material
Print’s not dead, it just needs online help

Rules that wouldn’t have been recognized by the distinguished figure below:


They’re the distilled wisdom in a well-researched piece entitled Westlaw rises to legal publishing fame by selling free information – St. Paul company outprofits Gannett, McGraw Hill, New York Times

And it started here:


  1. I find it very strange that Google has shown no interest in creating a legal database. They’ve fought hard to index books and pictures under copyright – they would index every book ever written if they could. And let’s not forget academic and scholarly journals which are also subject to copyright.

    Yet for some reason they have no interest in indexing case law which is 100% free and often very difficult or impossible to locate without an expensive subscription to westlaw, lexisnexis, etc.

    Why is that? Surely they could make a great deal of money from ad revenue from law firms and attorneys.

    If I were a cynic or conspiracy theorist, I’d say we had a prima facie case of a noncompete agreement between Google, westlaw, and lexisnexis.