On Friday, I learned about two major legal publishers who are posting Ukraine related content outside their paywalls. ALM is offering a “special report hub”  on Law.com, which provide ongoing international coverage related to the war in Ukraine in and it implications for the legal industry. Thomson Reuters is tracking Russian embargo regulations on their Practical Law platform in a Russia Sanctions and Related Considerations Toolkit,

American Lawyer Media: Special Report Hub

Gina Passarela, Editor-in-Chief, Global Legal Brands (The American Lawyer, Corporate Counsel, The National Law Journal, Law.com International, China Law & Practice) provided the following statement:

“ALM has created a special report hub to house all of its continuing coverage related to the war in Ukraine and its implications for the legal industry. This content, led by our global team of reporters at Law.com International and leveraging our reporting team from ALM’s legal, insurance, financial and
Continue Reading Ukraine Special Alert: ALM and Thomson Reuter Offer Free Ukraine Resources for Legal Professionals

Several months ago there was a “soft” release of a new  legal industry  news product–Reuters Legal News (RLN).  Today Thomson Reuters released several new features enabling lawyers and legal business professionals to create a customizable reading and alerting experience. Reuters which employs 2,500 journalists around the globe,  now has a team dedicated to writing, curating and tagging legal news so it can be easily customized for the busy lawyer. The RLN content is organized into four broad categories: Litigation, Transactional, Government and Legal Industry. There is a columnist dedicated to each of the four categories of legal news.  In addition to news from Reuters, the site includes selected content from Westlaw Today, The Thomson Reuters Institute, and Practical Law Updates.

Law Firms in the News

Account Setup. Accounts can be set up on the desktop at  www.reuters.com/legal or by downloading an ios or adroid app on your
Continue Reading Reuters Legal News – No Paywall! No Onepass!  Customizable Legal News

Better late than never. Here is my retrospective of top 2021 Dewey B Strategic posts.  The top stories reflect a wide swath of issues including rebranding, mergers, innovation, service disruptions, product realignments, launches, workflow and analytics. In looking at the list I am shocked to see that there is no reference at all to COVID-19.

Thomson Reuters Institute and the Center for Ethics and the Legal Profession at Georgetown University have released the 2022 Report on the State of the Legal Market: A challenging road to recovery. Law firms are throwing a lot of money at the talent problem and it may not be paying off… in fact history suggests that it may destroy some firms.  The report underscores the fact that many lawyers value “intangibles more than money” — and yet law firms continue succumb to the compensation “arms race.”

Are you at a “Stay Firm or a “Go” Firm? The report indicates that some law firms may lose almost 25% of their legal talent in a year. Ironically “stay” firms may pay less and have associates that work longer hours. Here is an enlightening chart comparing talent issues at
Continue Reading 2022 Report on The State of the Legal Market – Stop Throwing Money at the Talent War!

Only two days after I reported the end of evening and weekend Reference Attorney coverage, a representative from Thomson Reuters     reached out to me to report that the policy was being reversed. This was no doubt the result of the sputtering disbelief and outrage expressed by the law librarian community across the US.

Here is a statement from Thomson Reuters:

On Jan. 3, 2022, we adjusted how the Reference Attorney service is offered. We studied the issue and felt this adjustment of
Continue Reading Breaking News –Thomson Reuters To Reinstate 24X7 Research Helpdesk January 18th

In the 4 decades since its launch, Westlaw created the “gold standard” of research support with a cadre of reference attorneys who were available any time a lawyer was working – that is, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Thomson Reuters executives are apparently ready to “pass the baton” to one of their competitors. Tonight for the first time in almost four decades, attorneys who call the Westlaw Reference Attorney helpline after 8 PM CST will presumably be greeted with a recording telling them to call back tomorrow.

On December 10th, Law Library Directors and Knowledge Managers around the country received this startling announcement: “Currently, Reference Attorneys provide 24/7 research support to subscribers of Westlaw Edge, Westlaw Classic, Practical Law, CLEAR, and over 30 other Thomson Reuters products.  Beginning January 3, 2022, the Reference Attorney Service will move to a core business hours model and will be available Monday through Friday, 7am -8 pm Central for both chats and calls.”

Spectacularly Out of Step with Reality. Let’s think about this – the rest of the world has shifted away from “core business hours” and Thomson Reuters has devised a 1980’s style customer support model.  How many recent trends are screaming contrary indicators: the growth of global law firms, the demand for work-life balance and flexible schedules, pervasive mobility, not to mention a little thing called COVID-19 which has up-ended the time-space continuum of work. What do time zones even mean in a connected post-pandemic world?

On December 19th I interviewed Jonathan Meyer, Director, Reference Attorneys at Thomson Reuters. I spent more than 30 minutes on the phone with Meyer trying to understand why there was no alternative to ending 24X7 support. After all, every law firm which entered into a long term Westlaw contract entered that agreement with the expectation that users of the premium priced product would continue
Continue Reading Thomson Reuters Signals to Lawyers “You’re On Your Own” – Ends Evening and Weekend Customer Support Today

Last week Thomson Reuters announced a significant new integration of HighQ with  workflow  features of  Practical Law and 3E features, and  Microsoft Teams®. According to the press release the HighQ workflow platform offers more than “50 customer-driven enhancements.”  The marketplace is demanding tools which drive collaboration and optimize workflows and productivity.

Tuesday morning law librarians around the country began fielding inquiries from lawyers complaining of slow response times and access problems on Westlaw. The disrupted services included: Westlaw, Westlaw Edge, Westlaw UK, Practical Law US and UK, Practical Law Connect, Data Privacy Advisor.

After almost 7 hours of  interrupted access and colossal slow response times, Thomson Reuters representations were reaching out to customers to report that systems had been restored to normal.

I reached out to Thomson Reuters executives for an explanation, but they provided only two  brief statements addressing the  system
Continue Reading Westlaw Services Back to Normal Following Serious Disruptions Through Most of Tuesday

The 2007 recession was sort of a “cattle prod” which shocked law firms into acknowledging that  clients won’t pay for inefficiency. Legal publishers responded with a variety of “know how” or KM tools  which have created  a highly competitive niche in legal publishing. Every major legal publisher LexisNexis ,Thompson Reuters, Bloomberg Law, and Wolters Kluwer have been focused on gaining market share by growing their practice guidance and drafting tools.
This week FEIT Consulting is releasing a study :”Findings from the LexisNexis Practical Guidance/Thomson Reuters Practical Law Focus Group Inquiry” which summarizes the results of four focus groups which pitted Thompson Reuters Practical Law against Lexis Practical Guidance (previously branded as Practice Advisor.)
The basic question : “Is Lexis practice guidance ready for prime time?”  appears to have been answered in the affirmative.
Well the librarians are a hardened and skeptical lot and will want to test, poke, probe and conduct their own internal focus groups before


Continue Reading Feit Consulting: Is Lexis Practical Guidance Ready for Prime Time?