If you  were unable to attend the live presentation of this program at Legal Tech  in NY in February, the program will be repeated as a webinar co-sponsored by the  PLLIP Education and Professional Development Committee and AALL Continuing Professional Education Committee.

Date: April 25th, 2019

Time: Noon EST

Program Description Costs are exploding. Staffing is tight. Budgets need to be maintained. Whether you buy or build new legal knowledge and technology products, there is no guarantee of adoption. Email announcements remain unopened. The promise of food will not get associates to a conference room anymore. What is the answer? A panel of seasoned knowledge professionals will outline some of the techniques they use to drive, monitor, and assess digital adoption of new tools.

  • Speakers:
    Cynthia Brown, Director – Research Services – Littler Mendelson P.C.
    Jean O’Grady, Senior Director of Research & Knowledge – DLA Piper LLP
    June Liebert, Firmwide Director of Library and Research Services – Sidley Austin LLP
    Roger Scalbeck, Associate Dean & Professor of Law, University of Richmond School of Law Library
    Cheryl Smith, Director of Information Services – O’Melveny & Myers LLP

Registration: at this link 

Lindsey Carpino lcarpino@sidley.com and Denise Pagh dpagh@orrick.com
Education and Professional Development Committee Co-Chairs


Note: My apologies- this was originally posted with a mistaken reference to Intelligize instead of Intelliconnect.

Last week I reported the first installment of results from the Dewey B Strategic Hits and Misses Survey in Terminal Outrage: Results of the 2018-19 Hits and Misses Survey Pt.1.

Today I am reporting on the best New Products by various categories — excluding Analytics Products which will be reported in a separate post.

Here are the results:
Best New Product You became aware of in 2018: Winner: Thomson Reuters Westlaw Edge. Products from “start ups” Gavelytics and Courtroom Insight ranked second and third respectively.

Best New Product or Product Realignment From a Major Legal Publisher: Winner: Wolters Kluwer Cheetah completely replaces Intelliconnect.

Best New KM or Drafting Tool: Winner: (Thomson Reuters) Practical Law Automated Documents

Best New Competitive Intelligence Product: Winner: Manazma Insights


Best New Product:

Best New Product or Product Alignment from A Major Vendor:



Best New KM or Drafting Tool:

Best New Competitive Intelligence or News Product:

Note Re Competitive Intelligence Chart: 27 people selected other for their answer to the Competitive Intelligence question — making it the second highest response. However after reviewing the comments no single product was named more than two times. All products which were named were launched more than five years ago.Stay Tuned:


Future posts will look at “Hits and Miss” survey results which cover Westlaw Edge, Analytics products and what products people plan to cancel or purchase.

The major takeaway from the 2018-19 Dewey B Strategic Hits and Misses Survey is that consumers of legal information regard 2018 as “a miss.” The problem wasn’t so much the products—although products play an important role in triggering the discontent. The major problem is the behavior of legal publishers. Legal publishing is a mature market and yet vendors expect to grow their profit margins without having a good understanding of what their customers consider to be valuable. They are also indifferent to customer budget constraints and the demand for a customized product mix based on a specific firm’s practice needs and budget.

The New Survey Format This is the first time I have conducted the survey in its current format. There is a lot to digest – therefore I will be presenting the results in five or six separate blogposts. Today’s post is “Part 1.”

The survey was open from January 9, 2019 to March 9, 2019. There were 150 survey respondents. Almost every respondent added additional comments to at least one of their answers. There was deep engagement by participants – people were unloading. It is nonetheless an informal non-scientific survey which offers insights into the “pulse” of the legal information marketplace. Thanks to all the readers who took time to respond.

 Worst Vendor Relations Move/ Worst Product Change or Realignment:

Today I will cover the two questions from the survey which address “the most important development of 2018 which will impact negotiations and relationship with vendors” and the “worst product change or realignment in 2018.”  These two issues are connected.


The Bloomberg BNA product realignment was hands-down rated the most significant development in legal publishing. It was also rated the worst product change in legal publishing. This was in a year where they faced stiff competition from Lexis being accused of product bundling by members of the American Association of Law Libraries and outrage Thomson Reuters over the pricing of Westlaw Edge followed by widespread WESTLAW layoffs and. The question itself does not reveal if this is positive or negative but when paired with the selection of Bloomberg Law’s BNA product realignment as the worst development it becomes clear this was not a compliment.

How Did the BloombergBNA Deal Go So Wrong? In 2011 I practically gushed with enthusiasm in a post about BLaw’s acquisition of the Bureau of National Affairs. I predicted that “The long term success of the BNA/Bloomberg deal may lie in Bloomberg’s ability to retain the BNA “brain trust” – reporters who had deep regulatory expertise in the areas they reported on.”

The  recent BNA content reorganization led to:

o The disappearance of almost all of the iconic BNA newsletters.
o The elimination of a large swath of the BNA editors and reporters
o No clear description of the content migration plan. It would have taken a very large spread sheet to explain where content was going – but no one bothered to create one.
o No clear explanation of how content from former products could be located in Bloomberg Law – therefore it was impossible to understand the “black box” pricing.
o The naïve expectation that lawyers are interested in curating their own “newsfeeds” rather than reading an editorially created newsletter.

It has been reported that Bloomberg paid almost $1 billion dollars for BNA. How did they not have the strategy to save it eight year’s later? Bloomberg is a news organization! They wouldn’t have to look far to find a spectacularly successful legal news model: Law360 (Which I profiled in  “The Improbable Rise of Law 360.”) Perhaps BNA’s deep analysis needed to be trimmed to briefer “news bites.” But why couldn’t this be done while retaining the deep subject expertise and insights of the BNA news team?

What Does This All Mean for Wolters Kluwer and Fastcase. I guess surveys are like news headlines – “if it bleeds it leads.” Wolters Kluwer and Fastcase didn’t enrage their customers this year and the importance of their activities didn’t register with the irate readers of this blog. Wolters Kluwer – finally retired the Intelliconnect Platform and replaced it with the Cheetah platform. Intelliconnect was riddled with problems from its launch and most of the information community sighed a collective “good riddance”  to the product. Cheetah is a much more robust platform. But that is not the sum total of Wolters Kluwer’s smart moves. Bloomberg’s seeming abandonment of BNA newsletters will surely be seized as an opportunity by Wolters Kluwer which has a similar regulatory expertise and is well positioned fill the regulatory news vacuum left by BNA.

Fastcase’s Transformation Was the  Sleeper Story of the Year
Fastcase will be 20 years old in 2019, although it  still has the gloss of a “start up.” It remain a private company and co-founders Ed Walters and Phil Rosenthal remain deeply engaged with their customers. It has been years since the presidents of Lexis and Westlaw mingled with customers at the annual AALL conference. Ed and Phil are not only at the conference – they host a 3 day party! 2018 was in a year when it became clear that Fastcase is redefining themselves as a full-service competitor to Lexis and Westlaw. They entered into multiple alliances to acquire secondary source material, they launched their own publishing imprint Full Court Press, they acquired an analytics company Docket Alarm, they are moving into legal news with several alliances including Lexblog. This week they added expert witness data from Courtroom Insight and JurisPro… to name a few….

There was a time when many believed, including myself, that BloombergLaw would be the “game changer” in lthe egal research market. But when the product launched in the midst of the “Great Recession” the price was too high. After a year, they had only signed firmwide licenses at two ALM 100 firms.  At lower price point – I am confident that they could have had major market share today. Fastcase took the opposite tact – low price, low key, customer centric marketing, slow and steady growth across the US through alliances with bar associations and small firms.

And here we are in 2019 with a marketplace hungry for a disruptor.

Upcoming “Hits and Misses” Blogposts:

o Hits and Misses In Analytics Products
o Best New Products
o Westlaw Edge Hit or Miss?
o What are readers purchasing?
o What are readers cancelling?







Today Fastcase is announcing yet another pair of alliances with a pair of legal vendors in the expert witness space: JurisPro  and Courtroom Insight. The combined content from the two companies will provide over 100,000 expert witness profiles and integrate the Courtroom Insight expert witness knowledge management solution within the Fastcase platform. It will be available to subscribers to the Fastcase 7 Venus Platform.

This is breaking news and I have not yet seen a demo of how these resources will be integrated on Fastcase. I do know that expert witness research is a complex and time consuming project consisting of numerous subtasks and research projects which often have to be conducted across a wide variety of resources. Last year Courtroom Insight release a report on the complexities and risks of expert witness due diligence which I reviewed in a post: Surprise You Expert  Witness Has a Rapsheet.  Competitors LexisAdvance and Westlaw both offer expert witness profiles and Daubert data.

With these alliances Fastcase is making one more move to elbow its way into the full service legal research space – but at a price which is lower than the incumbents by several orders of magnitude.

Here is the full press release:

April 10, 2019

Media Contacts:
Jennifer Brand Ransom, Fastcase Media Relations

Fastcase Bolsters Search Results by Adding Expert Witness Profiles
Integrated Content Now Available in Fastcase 7 from JurisPro
and Courtroom Insight

Washington, DC (April 10, 2019) – Fastcase today announced a partnership with JurisPro and Courtroom Insight, leading providers of Expert Witness data. Together, the companies will provide over 100,000 expert witness profiles and integrate the expert witness knowledge management solution with Fastcase’s legal research platform. It will be available to Fastcase subscribers who are using the “Venus” version of the Fastcase 7 Legal Research Platform.

These prominent online directories of expert witnesses, litigation consultants, mediators and arbitrators strengthen the overall analytic tools which Fastcase and Docket Alarm are developing for law firms across all market segments. This partnership allows law firms and legal researchers to capture, customize, share, and analyze critical information about expert witnesses, arbitrators, judges, and attorneys in their private digital environments.

“Inclusion of the Expert Witness profiles from JurisPro & Courtroom Insight adds a new dimension to the legal research opportunities provided in Fastcase,” said Sean Tate, Fastcase Product Manager. “Users can now enhance searches with results of experts in a myriad of specialties. We’re thrilled about this partnership because it broadens the research opportunities for all Fastcase users.”

Fastcase legal research subscribers, which include many of the largest law firms, corporate counsel, law schools, 32 state bar associations, and dozens of metro, county, and specialty bar associations, now have the ability to access to expert witness profiles from within their litigation research. Current subscribers and users participating in the AI Sandbox will require subscriptions to these databases to access the entirety of the shared database.

“We are very pleased to have JurisPro database of expert witnesses, consultants, and private investigators integrated into Fastcase,” said Jim Robinson, President of JurisPro Inc. “With the launch of the “Venus” version of the Fastcase 7, Fastcase have even more resources for their legal research. Fastcase users will now be able to access JurisPro’s expert witness information, including the expert’s background as an expert, contact information, areas of expertise, and testimonial background. This will enable Fastcase customers to visualize and analyze litigation strategies in new ways.”

Fastcase has pioneered the smartest legal research tools in the market, with integrated citation analysis tools, data visualization maps of search results, and the first legal research apps for iPhone, iPad and Android devices. The service also includes Bad Law Bot, the first big data service to identify negative citations to judicial opinions. As Fastcase continues to build out its Analytics, Legal News, and Alerts Services, products such as Docket Alarm, the AI Sandbox, Full Court Press, and a library of expert commentary of more than 15,000 expert legal bloggers in the LexBlog network, it helps customers visualize and analyze litigation strategies in new ways.

About JurisPro
Formed by a group of practicing attorneys, JurisPro Inc. (JurisPro) is a professional marketing company that maintains the most substantive directory for expert witnesses available for the legal community. Through JurisPro services, legal professionals can find and properly retain a qualified expert, evaluate an expert to whom you were referred, or learn information about your opponent’s expert. For more information, visit www.jurispro.com.

About Courtroom Insight
Courtroom Insight offers the leading expert witness knowledge management solution, which enables law firms and legal organizations to capture, share, and analyze critical information about expert witnesses. The company was founded in 2009 and is headquartered in San Ramon, California. For more information, visit www.courtroominsight.com.

About Fastcase
As the smarter alternative for legal research, Fastcase democratizes the law, making it more accessible to more people. Using patented software that combines the best of legal research with the best of Web search, Fastcase helps busy users sift through the clutter, ranking the best cases first and enabling the re-sorting of results to find answers fast. Founded in 1999, Fastcase has more than 900,000 subscribers from around the world. Fastcase is an American company based in Washington, D.C. For more information, follow Fastcase on Twitter at @Fastcase, or visit www.fastcase.com.

Today LexisNexis is launching a major transformation of their Customer Relationship Management  (CRM) product InterAction for Microsoft Office 365.
InterAction has been the leading CRM solution in the large law market. CRM’s are no longer a stand alone digital rolodex. They are being leveraged by firms to enhance both knowledge management and business intelligence initiatives. Interaction for Office 365 is designed to drive major workflow efficiencies because it connects director tp Outlook, Word, and Excel. It is extracting data from then delivering it back to attornesy at the point of need in their workflow. Out of the gate this product will enhance lawyer workflow. I think the more exciting opportunity is not mentioned in the press release. LexisNexis will no doubt leverage their substantial legal and business intelligence repositories and feeds to drive actionable data into the CRM.

I had the opportunity to see a demo of the new system provided by Scott Winter, Director of Product Management for InterAction, and Scott Wallingford, General Manager for InterAction

New features include:

• Auto data collection: Captures info from email signature files and imports them into your contacts
• Hybrid cloud: Stores the data where each individual customer wants it – on-premise, public/private cloud or mixture of both – for greater flexibility or security
• Greater relationship intelligence: Shows users who else within their org knows a contact and lists recent activities to head off duplicate efforts such as siloed pitch initiatives.
• Unique features are integrated directly into Microsoft apps, including the ability to make VoIP phone calls directly from Outlook and automatically record it as an activity.
• Data visualization tools to illuminate relationship density or gaps so marketing and business development activities can be targeted appropriately and more effectively.

The press release highlights the importance of LexisNexis hvings full control over its technology. This means new features can be rolled out faster and more seamlessly without having to wait for a third-party’s platform updates, or without any disruption caused by unforeseen updates or patches.

The Hidden Strategic Opportunity I think the more important strategic advantage will arise from the integration of LexisNexis content with InterAction. It is not hard to imagine the power of Lexis feeding, news, Lex Machina and Context data, Courtlink dockets and other forms of up-to-the minute intelligence into a contextual report on the contact.

Today Wolters Kluwer is releasing the 2019 Future Ready Lawyer Survey. The study was conducted between December 10, 2018 and Jan 13, 2019. It is based on interviews with 700 lawyers in law firms legal departments and business service firms across the US and 10 European countries. The report also includes insights from legal industry thought leaders  including Bob Ambrogi, Marcus Hartung, Dean Sonderegger, Jeroen Zweers and myself.

The press release quotes Stacy Caywood, CEO, Wolters Kluwer Legal & Regulatory:.“After years of debate about the transformation of the legal sector – if, when and how it would happen – there’s no question that the global future of law is rapidly underway and that technology is a key force for change.”   Dean Sonderegger, Vice President and General Manager for Legal Markets and Innovation at Wolters Kluwer Legal & Regulatory U.S.  observes that “It is crucial for legal professionals to understand how different solutions can not only add value for the firm’s clients, but also how they can be leveraged in a way that benefits the firm fully.”

Key Trends

Llawyers foresee pressure from a series of trends they expect to impact their organizations over the next three years. According to the report the top five trends expected to have the most impact are:
• Coping with increased volume and complexity of information (72% report expected impact);
• Emphasis on improved efficiency and productivity (71%);
• Understanding which legal technologies deliver the highest value (69%);
• Meeting changing client and leader expectations (68%);
• Financial issues including greater price competition, alternative fee structures and cost containment pressures (68%).

It would be impossible to summarize all of the data in the report. I have hand picked a sampling of interesting charts from the report below.

AI, Analytics, Machine Learning The Study defined transformational technologies as including artificial intelligence, big data, predictive analytics, machine learning and decision support tools. Below is a chart examining the use of transformative technologies.


Innovation Lags

Although the chart above paints an optimistic picture, the following chart shows that only 19% of law firms have undertaken a formal innovation initiative.




Lawyer Resistance to Technology

I was particularly interested in the questions examining lawyer resistance to new technologies. Resistance is broken into three main catagories: Lack of knowledge about the technology, organizational issues (lack of strategy or support and financial ( costs as well as the absence of a clear way to measure ROI).



The report is full of interesting statistics and well worth a review.  Download the full Future Ready Lawyer Report at this link.

This year the American Association of Law Libraries Annual Meeting will be held July 13th to 16 at the Washington Convention Center in Washington DC. AALL 2019 will celebrate the innovators within the legal information profession and highlight the skills, talents, and attributes that benefit  the institutions  they serve.

The Educational sessions cover a wide range of practical and substantive issues including hot topics such as GDPR, Privacy, analytics and the #metoo movement.

Attendees can also:

  • Network with colleagues from around the country and around the world.
  • Meet  with vendors and see the latest features and products including the latest from legal tech start-ups.
  • Immerse themselves in the national  museums, libraries and archival treasures of the Nation’s Capital.

Keynote: A Law Library Saved My Life

Shon Hopwood will deliver the keynote: “A Law Library Saved my Life.” This year’s keynote will be sponsored by LexisNexis. and will be held on Sunday July 14th 0-1015 A.M. Shon Hopwood is an Associate Professor of Law at Georgetown University Law Center. His unusual legal journey began not at law school, but federal prison, where he learned to write briefs for other prisoners. Two petitions for certiorari he prepared were later granted review by the United States Supreme Court, and he won cases for other prisoners in federal courts across the country. His story has been featured in the New York TimesWashington PostThe New Yorker, and on NPR and 60 Minutes.

Other Special Events include

Learn about AALL’s information policy issues, and then take our message to Capitol Hill—sign up by May 17.

The PLLIP Summit will focus on the “Road to 2030.”  The Summit will be held on July 13th at the Marriott and requires a separate registration.

Register for the AALL Meeting, the PLLIP Summit  and other events at this link

First time and returning vendors can learn about exhibiting at the annual meeting  at this link



Fastcase keeps picking up new partnerships to expand the scope of their offerings well beyond their original focus on AI enhanced primary law. My first  Fastcase blogpost  8 years ago  was subtitled the “Little  Engine that Could” and boy have they exceeded my expectations.  Like the “energizer bunny – they just keep on going” and growing!

Starting today Fastcase subscribers will get access to select titles from the American Bar Association.

In the press release Steve Errick, Fastcase Chief Operating Officer, offers observations of the current state of legal publishing, ” While traditional legal publishers were ramping down their book divisions, the state bards and the ABA stepped up and kept legal book publishing vibrant…The vision for Fastcase is to make it easy for users to connect the legal research workflow dots, from primary law and public records, dockets, expert witness, legal analytics, and legal news,” Errick said. “The collection includes law review articles from HeinOnline, alerts, digests and blogs from LexBlog, and now our fast-growing collection of more than 1,000 market-leading expert treatises. To see it all come together and be able to showcase these fantastic books represents the culmination of 20 years of effort, and we feel like we’re really just getting started.”

Bryan Kaye, Director of editorial and Licensing for ABA Publishing is quoted in the press release: “We are excited to partner the ABA’s highly regarded book content with Fastcase’s dynamic platform. We share Fastcase’s vision to provide lawyers with the secondary content they need to excel in their work and advance the Rule of Law; and are pleased to join Fastcase in its commitment to grow creative, expert, sensible content written by lawyers for lawyers.”

Fastcase users will be able to search the new treatises within the Fastcase legal research platform immediately. For assistance with accessing the new secondary materials, users can contact customer support at 1-866-77-FASTCASE (866.773.2782). Those without a Fastcase subscription can try the new integration by signing up for a free trial at www.fastcase.com.

Print  copies of the ABA titles will be available for purchase in conjunction with Fastcase’s other publishing partners, as well as its own publishing imprint, Full Court Press.



Today Casemaker is announcing an expanded relationship with vLex a global legal research provider. Members of the Casemaker Bar Association Consortium will  have an opportunity to get access to vLex intelligent legal research assistant, Vincent. Several months ago I wrote about the very unique functionality in vLex’s Vincent. It is the only legal research product that can simultaneously analyse documents in two languages– English and Spanish and deliver results across multiple jurisdictions.

Users of Casemaker4, currently in beta test, will get one click access to Vincent. Members of the Casemaker Consortium will be offered a one week free trial of Vincent as will as an exclusive 50% discount off year one pricing.

“This is an exciting time for vLex,” shared Lluis Faus, CEO. “By creating this direct pathway from Casemaker4 to Vincent, hundreds of thousands of U.S. attorneys will now have the ability to tap into the
power of AI at unprecedented scale.”

“We’re thrilled to announce this next step in our partnership with vLex,” said Sarah Gorman, Chief Operating Officer at Casemaker. “Members of our consortium bar associations will greatly benefit from the ability to go beyond traditional keyword or Boolean search into a more robust contextual search that begins with Casemaker’s rich content and is accelerated by artificial intelligence.”

Under the terms of an existing agreement, vLex users will continue to receive access to  Casemaker’s full
collection of U.S. federal and 50-state primary law content. Likewise, Casemaker4 users will retain the
ability to search databases of international legal materials provided by vLex.