In recent months Bloomberg BNA has been introducing changes to the format, timing and delivery of their various publications and platforms. Some newsletters are being discontinued, some newsletters are being merged into channels, other newsletters will only be available in a practice center, some practice centers will only be available on the Bloomberg Law platform. For a company that wowed the market with their promise of simplified, standard pricing, the Bloomberg Law acquisition of the Bureau of National Affairs (BNA) has become a multi-year content  migration headache for legal information professionals.  The pricing and the licensing sure aren’t simple anymore — unless you are one of the firms that has signed up for an enterprise Bloomberg Law contract.

A news report today suggests that there are shifts in strategy which will drive additional changes to the legal news content from Bloomberg BNA.

A story in talking biz news reprints an email sent out by Bloomberg BNA editor in chief Cesca Antonelli yesterday explaining the news organization’s re-organization and layoff of 46 staff.

“Today we are remaking how we cover the legal market. The five groups that produce the bulk of Bloomberg Law news products will become two: one focused on beat reporting and one focused on what we are calling legal intelligence.”

  • The new teams in legal Intelligence news director Tom Taylor will have three groups. One team will be focused on case summaries, court opinions and daily decisions. A New legal reporter job will focus on covering courthouse action and complex legal decisions in real time.
  • They are centralizing their “insights commentary” for Blaw. They are promising more insight that are a better meet Reed and make us the center of the legal community. Lisa Rockelli will be the team lead. Frankly the description of this content did not make any sense to me so I have reached out to BloombergBNA for an explanation.
  • Expanding coverage of the business and practice of law. In my opinion,  this is overdue. I wrote a post several months ago bemoaning the lack of competition to Lexis  which holds  a virtual monopoly on legal industry news. The market will benefit from a serious competitor to Law360 -if that is what BBNA is planning to build.
  • The rest of legal coverage will move under news director Karin Ertel who will lead five teams of reporters and editors. This team seems to be focused on breaking down content silos “to stop thinking about publications and just focus on breaking stories and spotting trends..”
  • The beat teams will focus on labor and employment; healthcare and benefits; securities bankruptcy and trade; and IP and privacy.

I will be exploring what this all means for law firms and legal information professionals  and continue to report of these developments once I have an opportunity to discuss these changes with Bloomberg BNA executives.