By Gabe Teninbaum
My name is Gabe Teninbaum (on Twitter at @GTeninbaum). I'm a professor, as well as the Assistant Dean for Innovation, Strategic Initiatives, & Distance Education, at Suffolk Law in Boston. I'm also a Visiting Fellow at Yale Law School's Information Society Project. My work focuses on legal innovation, technology, and the changing business of law. Every day, I digest tons of content on these topics. The goal of this newsletter is to curate the most interesting, valuable, and thought-provoking of these ideas and share them with you.
If you like reading it, please subscribe. You're also invited to forward this to others who you think would benefit. Likewise, please email me with feedback, ideas, and tips so I can deliver what's most valuable to you.
The Appetizer: Sponsors
SpacedRepetition.com is a tool to help law students & bar preppers learn more using cutting-edge science. Called the single most effective technique to learn by the American Psychological Association. More than 17,000 users spread across every law school in the U.S.
The Main Course: 5 Things That Made Me Think This Week
The Sharks Said "Yes": I'm a regular viewer of ABC's Shark Tank, but I've never been more excited to watch an episode than I was this past Friday night, when the co-founders of HelloPrenup pitched their product to the Sharks. Not only was it the first legal tech product ever considered on the show, but co-founder Julia Rodgers learned to build tools like HelloPrenup in my course at Suffolk Law. Then, HelloPrenup got funded by TWO Sharks: Nirav Tolia, Founder of Nextdoor, and Kevin O'Leary, aka Mr. Wonderful! I pumped my fist the hardest I have since Malcom Butler sealed the 2015 Super Bowl with a last second goal-line interception. I applaud the Sharks - they're investing in the future, and I couldn't be more delighted for Julia, HelloPrenup, or legal tech (separately, watching that Super Bowl clip, I still can't believe the Seahawks passed. Why not just just hand the ball to Marshawn Lynch, who would've waltzed in? Anyway, I'll take it.).
Morgan & Morgan = LegalTech Pros? If you've got a TV, radio, or come in contact with billboards, you've probably seen ads for national mega firm Morgan & Morgan. Presumably, their model is based on generating lots of leads. Doing that at scale takes enormous efficiency, and the M&M team has adopted tons of technology to support their 800 attorneys and 3000 (!) support staff. Fascinating article laying out how they do it by Christine Schiffner at law.com.
Contract Lawyers Watched by Big Brother: this ABA Journal article describes the experience of dozens of contract attorneys who are working from home under the watchful eye of facial recognition technology mounted to their computer. Presumably, the idea is that the firm paying their bills wants to make sure they're doing the work, but rather than measuring their output, they've opted to watch them every moment of their working day. Don't do this, folks.
Law Firms in the Metaverse: there was bound to be a pieces considering the impact of the Metaverse on law firms, and vice versa. I even mused on it in last week's issue, #139. This week, I read my first article on the intersection of law and Metaverse...and it's excellent. It's by Robert Millard, Director of the Cambridge Strategy Group posting on Artificial Lawyer. The article covers everything from how the rule of law will apply in the Metaverse, to Metaverse as legal workplace.
Technologies Improving A2J on 11/18 at 1pm ET/noon CT: one of the few silver linings of the pandemic has been the generosity of event hosts in making content freely available online. Northwestern Law school has been a shining example, and they've got another good-looking talk in their series available at no charge on Thursday, 11/18 (tomorrow!). During this session, three LegalTech leaders (Conor Malloy of Rentervention, Rohan Pavuluri of Upsolve, and Kristen Sonday of Paladin) will demo their solutions and discuss how technology can help reduce the justice gap. Sign-up here, and be sure to track Northwestern's upcoming events, because they've had a number of terrific gatherings.
60 Songs that Explain the 90's: I came of age in the 90s, graduating both high school and college in the decade. At the time, I didn't have a big appreciation for pop music. In retrospect, most of it still isn't very good...but the nostalgia factor is there now, at least. Music critic Rob Harvilla created a podcast exploring the songs and cultural moment and every episode I've heard so far is great for its own reason. If you want an easy starting place, try this episode on Third Eye Blind's Semi-Charmed Life.
It's free, but it's not cheap