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?

Thomson Reuters is releasing a powerful suite of new tools to enhance workflow within Practical Law.  .   The new features include Dynamic Search, Knowledge Maps, Quick Compare,  Interactive Matter Maps and What’s Market Analytics. Several of the features such as Dynamic Search and Quick Compare parallel developments and tools already available in Westlaw Edge. Erica Kitaev, senior director, Product Management, Thomson Reuters provided me with an overview of the product features.

Paul Fischer, president of the Legal Professionals segment of Thomson Reuters is quoted in the press release:  “By putting AI, analytical tools and proprietary visual navigation technologies in service to our attorney authored content, we’ve created entirely new capabilities to help our customers thrive during this time of rapid change.”

Dynamic Search offers a natural language search powered by machine learning and algorithms that were trained on Practical Law content. Users can be presented with three different kinds of answers. Machine learning answers provide a direct answer and links to the applicable passage of text. Keyword results also  appear under the answer card.  If a user encounters a typeahead question the result
Continue Reading Thomson Reuters Launches Practical Law Dynamic Tool Set

 New feature identifies cases which are contrary to an opponent’s arguments

This week Thomson Reuters released another feature to Quick Check. How much easier can cite checking get? Quick Check Contrary Authority helps lawyers zero in on vulnerabilities of an opponents brief. Quick Check Contrary Authority identifies uncited cases that oppose the arguments in an opponent’s brief.

Quick Check Thomson Reuters brief checking tool was released as part of Westlaw
Continue Reading In The Brief Checking Wars Thomson Reuters Ups the Ante with New “Contrary Authority” Feature

The 2020-21 Dewey B Strategic What’s Hot and What’s Not Survey  included a series of questions related to the COVID-19 Crisis.

COVID Resources Every legal  publisher launched some kind of COVID related legal resource. Many of these resources were made publicly available outside the paywall. These products included toolkits, trackers,  practical guidance, advisories, checklists, legislative

Workflow Tools. 2020 was marked by significant activity in the  legal workflow/drafting space.  There were eight products that came to my attention during 2020. Three of the eight workflow products fall into the Brief analysis category.   Casetext invented the brief analysis space with the launch of the first brief analysis product CARA in 2016.  So

Legal News One of the most surprising developments of 2020 was the new focus on Legal News. ALM launched an innovative new alerting services called Law.com Radar which originally launched as (Legal Radar). Here are links to the posts I wrote about  Law.com radar in February and November 2020. Westlaw although owned by the Thomson Reuters news organization had ignored the legal news market they launched Westlaw Today in 2020.  (The predecessor company West Publishing had made short lived attempt  with a product called Westlaw News sometime in the 1980s.) Fastcase which bought Law Street Media began publishing legal news which leveraged data harvested from their Docket Alarm analytics product. ( A new Lexis News offering Law360 Pulse which launched  in January 2021 was not included in this survey but will be included in the 2021 survey.)

Best Legal News Product: ALM’s Law.com Radar

Legal Marketplaces It has become nearly impossible to test and track all the new legal technology tools that flood the market each year. In addition, existing tools are transformed with powerful new functionality. Enter the legal marketplace – a new category of legal resource
Continue Reading What’s Hot and What’s Not 2020-21 Survey: ALM Law.com Radar Voted Best Legal News Product and Thomson Reuters Legal Home Best Marketplace

The results of the Dewey B Strategic 2020-2021  Hits and Misses Survey are in. Thanks to everyone who took the time to participate in the survey.

The demographics. The survey was conducted  from February 16th through March 1st 2021. There were 101 respondents. The respondents described their professional positions as follows: 81% librarians/knowledge managers), 11% law firm management, 5% IT professionals, 3% practicing attorneys, 1% data scientists.

As usual I have asked readers to identify the best new products in several categories including news, analytics, workflow. Readers also provided the names of products they plan to cancel or acquire. I could not ignore the defining issue of 2020 – so I asked a series of questions about the performance of legal publishers in response to COVID.

What was the most significant development in legal technology/publishing?

I love and respect my readers but I don’t always agree with them. I have to admit I was truly shocked that readers selected the  shuttering of Ross Intelligence the most significant development of 2020. Here’s why— frankly I only know a handful of firms that had purchased
Continue Reading The Results Are In: Dewey B Strategic What’s Hot and What’s Not Part 1: Westlaw Edge vs Lexis+ vs. Law Firm Budgets

This week Thomson Reuters Institute and Georgetown Law Center on Ethics and the Legal Profession released their 2021 Report on the State of the Legal Market. It is always an interesting read but this year offered  a petri dish for the transformation of law firms in real time.  2020 was a perfect storm of pandemic, financial uncertainty, social change and political stress.
The Report adopts the theme of Malcolm Gladwell‘s meme-able book The Tipping Point. Contrary to the popular assumption that social change happens slowly and steadily over a period of time Gladwell argues with a metaphor that is equally appropriate for our present circumstances that in many cases change happens more like an epidemic. As he puts it ideas and products and messages and behavior spread like viruses do. Although forces of change may build slowly often a a singular set of circumstances triggers a profound change. The 2020 Report examines whether law firms have reached such a tipping point.
Growth in Profits Per Equity Partner
Some of the data  points highlighted  in the report :


Continue Reading 2021 State of the Legal Market Report – A Tipping Point For Law Firm Transformation?

I have ranked the most popular 15  Dewey S Strategic posts of 2020.It is no surprise to me that posts about the release of specialty COVID resources by major legal publishers dominate – 4 of the 15 stories. My annual “Hits and Misses” survey results  were covered in 3 of the 15 top posts. The

We were all blindsided as 2020 unfolded, yet the momentum of technological change and innovation assured a steady stream of new products. I have identified five trends, which I have divided into three categories: unforeseeable, continuing and surprising.

The trends I believe are worth noting — Unforeseeable: COVID-19 impacts; Predicable: state court analytics and innovative workflow tools; Surprising: legal news re-emerges as a competitive focus among major legal publishers and tech marketplaces emerge.

Unforeseeable: COVID-Related Trends

COVID alone triggered four subtrends:

  • The emergence of local law and ephemeral publications. Major legal vendors were no more prepared to track county level health department issuances and Governors’ executive orders than the average law firm. To make things worse these “documents” were issued in a myriad of social media formats, texts, tweets, Facebook pages … . What’s a law firm to do?
  • Librarians and KM professionals stepped into the vacuum and established protocols for locating and harnessing the untidy universe of COVID-19 ephemera.
  • Law firms became publishers of original COVID-19 resources (leveraging the local documents harnessed by librarians).
  • Legal publishers turned out an unprecedented number of free legal resources covering COVID-19 issues. I covered this trend in an earlier ATL post.

Continuing Trends: State Court Analytics And Workflow Tools

Workflow Tools

Continue Reading 5 (Unforeseeable, Predicable, And Surprising) Legal Tech Trends In 2020