Inside Track: Annual Legal Blog Roundup: Wisconsin Legal Bloggers Fill Legal News Void:

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  • June
    03
    2020

    Annual Legal Blog Roundup: Wisconsin Legal Bloggers Fill Legal News Void

    Wisconsin legal bloggers mobilized quickly to provide crucial information during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Many are featured on this 6th annual list of Wisconsin law blogs, a statewide community of legal bloggers.

    Joe Forward

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    June 3, 2020 – In mid-March, with the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic spreading across the country, communities of legal bloggers shifted to covering legal developments related to the public health emergency.

    COVID-19 triggered a blitz of articles on pandemic-related legal issues by lawyers with the knowledge and expertise to unravel and explain complicated subject matter.

    From coronavirus-related legislation and regulation to working and serving clients from home, from adapting to new legal technology to remote court hearings, lawyers kept up with rapid changes through daily blog posts on law firm websites and other platforms.

    Bob Ambrogi, an attorney and longtime legal journalist, said attorney-bloggers have been filling voids in traditional news coverage of legal developments for many years.

    “There is so much good journalism-reporting coming out of legal blogs, but it’s hard to put it all together and make it accessible,” said Ambrogi, editor-in-chief at LexBlog, a legal technology company that has built a network of more than 25,000 legal bloggers.

    Lawyers as Journalists

    “Lawyers blog primarily as a means to market their practices,” said Ambrogi, who blogs on legal technology at his LawSites Blog.

    “I can tell you any number of stories about lawyers who have been successful building up their practices and achieving prominence in part because of blogging,” he said.

    “But I think blogging is more that. One, it’s a very powerful form of engagement, in getting involved with others in your area of interest and your field of law.”

    Ambrogi says it’s also a service to the community, whether that’s a community of your clients or a community of other attorneys in your practice area. “There are a lot of powerful reasons for doing it,” said Ambrogi, who has been blogging for decades.

    Another reason legal blogging is so valuable: blogs are written by subject matter experts with vast knowledge in their own practice areas. Lawyers in the trenches are following legal developments and providing analysis as those developments unfold.

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    As the COVID-19 pandemic began to unfold, attorneys used blogs to keep clients and the community informed on legal developments and a rapidly changing landscape. Bob Ambrogi, a longtime attorney and legal journalist, says attorney bloggers are providing a form of legal journalism with a significant body of work in all practices areas.

    Bring Bloggers Together

    But legal blogs exist everywhere, on law firm websites, social media, and other blogging platforms. The vast legal blog library is scattered across the world.

    Joe ForwardJoe Forward, Saint Louis Univ. School of Law 2010, is a legal writer for the State Bar of Wisconsin, Madison. He can be reached by org jforward wisbar email or by phone at (608) 250-6161.

    The concept of LexBlog, founded by former La Crosse trial lawyer Kevin O’Keefe, was to pull these blogs together into a real-time digital library.

    That blossomed into the LexBlog Network, a searchable collection of legal blogs written by lawyers across the U.S., including Wisconsin, all in one place.

    “Lexblog created aggregation technology that can pull in blogs from all over the world and organize them in a way that makes them useful and accessible,” Ambrogi said.

    O’Keefe likens LexBlog to the Associated Press (AP), which aggregates news stories from across the world for use by localized media outlets on the AP wire.

    Legal blogs – and the contributors and organizations profiled on the aggregated publication – become amplified through one publishing platform that constantly evolves with technology, such as technology that indexes websites for Google search.

    Ambrogi has served as editor of various legal newspapers, including editorial director of American Lawyer Media (ALM). He says the journalism landscape has changed.

    “What I have been seeing in legal media is the same as we have been seeing in traditional media, which is that sources of reporting are drying up,” he said. “A lot of media outlets are struggling and they are cutting back on their reporting.”

    Legal blogs have either replaced or supplemented traditional reporting. “There are a lot of things in law that just don’t get reported by the traditional newspapers,” Ambrogi said.

    Traditional media outlets may report a major piece of legal news when it happens. But tomorrow and the next day, legal bloggers will go more in-depth on the analysis of what it means and why it’s important,” Ambrogi said.

    “Over time, you get a body of reporting about these developments that cumulatively becomes really valuable. That’s why aggregation platforms are so valuable. They let you pull it all together that, from the reader’s point of view, makes it accessible.”

    The Top 79: This Year’s List of Legal Bloggers

    For the past five years, InsideTrack has highlighted the most active Wisconsin legal blogs and bloggers to showcase those who are writing on various aspects of Wisconsin legal developments.

    The 2020 list includes 79 Wisconsin law blogs. Some of these blogs have been going strong since publication of the first list in 2015.

    Other blogs fell off the list. Some blogs are new to the scene. If you think your blog meets the criteria for inclusion but it’s not included, contact State Bar legal writer org jforward wisbar Joe Forward. The list only includes blogs that posted at least 12 times in 2019, and at least four times in 2020. Blogs must include posting dates.

    42 Solo, Small Firm, and Independent Blogs*

    Blog

    Firm Affiliation

    Practice Area

    1

    Andrew Ladd Law Blog

    The Law Offices of Andrew C. Ladd LLC

    Criminal defense

    2

    Appleton Area Law Blog

    Peterson Berk Cross S.C.

    Personal injury law

    3

    Appleton WI Bankruptcy Law Blog

    Helbing Law Office LLC

    Bankruptcy law

    4

    Banking Misconduct Blog

     

    Judge, Lang & Katers and Mahaney Law

    Banking law

    5

    Boller & Vaughan Blog

    Boller & Vaughan LLC

    Personal injury law

    6

    Bucher Law Group Blog

    Bucher Law Group LLC

    Criminal defense, family law, personal injury

    7

    Cannon & Dunphy Blog

    Cannon & Dunphy S.C.

    Personal injury law

    8

    Carlson Dash Blog

    Carlson Dash LLC

    Business, labor & employment, real estate, estate planning

    9

    Center for Health & Wellness Law Blog

    Barbara Zabawa, Center for Health & Wellness Law LLC

    Health law

    10

    Comics Lawyer Blog**

    Dirk Vanover, Vanover Legal LLC

    Entertainment law

    11

    Due Diligence

    Brian Mahany, Mahany Law

    Whistleblower and fraud recovery law

    12

    Doar Drill & Skow Blog

    Doar Drill & Skow

    General

    13

    Elder Law Blog

     

    Brian Mahany, Mahany Law

    Elder law

    14

    Employment Law Blog

    Walcheski & Luzi LLC

    Employment law

    15

    Estate Planning Perspectives Blog

    Willms-O'Leary S.C.

    Estate planning

    16

    Ethicking Blog

    Stacie Rosenzweig, Halling & Cayo S.C.

    Ethics and law practice

    17

    Gimbel Reilly Guerin & Brown Blog

    Gimbel Reilly Guerin & Brown, LLP

    General

    18

    Herrling Clark Law Firm Blog

    Herrling Clark Law Firm Ltd

    Personal injury, family law, estate planning

    19

    Hurley, Burish, & Stanton Blog

    Hurley, Burish, & Stanton SC

    General

    20

    KEW Tips Blog

    Kramer, Elkins & Watt LLC

    Business, employment, family law

    21

    Krause Donovan Blog

    Krause Donovan, LLC

    Probate and estate planning law

    22

    Loeb & Herman Blog

    Gregg Herman, Loeb & Herman S.C.

    Family law

    23

    Milwaukee Criminal Defense Attorney Blog

    Meyer Van Severen S.C.

    24

    Milwaukee Employment Law Blog

    Alan C. Olson & Associates

    Employee rights law

    25

    Milwaukee Wisconsin Motor Vehicle Accident Law Blog

    Martin Law Office LLC

    Personal injury law

    26

    Murphy & Prachthauser Blog

     

    Murphy & Prachthauser S.C.

    Personal injury law

    27

    MWH Law Group Blog

    MHW Law Group

    General

    28

    Ogden Glazer + Schaefer Blog

     

    Ogden Glazer + Schaefer LLC

    Business, food and beverage, intellectual property law

    29

    Paul Ksicinski Blog

     

    Paul A. Ksicinski, Attorney at Law

    Criminal defense

    30

    Police Misconduct Blog

    Mahany Law

    Police misconduct

    31

    Probst Law Blog

    Probst Law Offices S.C.

    Family law

    32

    Schloemer Law Firm Blog

    Schloemer Law Firm

    Estate planning, tax and business law

    33

    Securities Law Blog

    Halling & Cayo, S.C.

    Securities law

    34

    Stangl Law Blog

    Stangl Law Offices S.C.

    Ciminal defense

    35

    Tesar Law Group Blog

    Marsha Tesar, Tesar Law Group S.C.

    Estate planning

    36

    Tristan’s Landlord-Tenant Law Blog

    Tristan Pettit, Petrie & Pettit SC

    Landlord-tenant law

    37

    Western Wisconsin Law Blog

    Mudge Porter Ludeen & Seguin S.C.

    Personal and workplace injury

    38

    Wisconsin Bankruptcy Law Blog

    Miller & Miller Law LLC

    Bankruptcy & creditor/debtor law

    39

    Wisconsin Business Law Blog

    Schober Schober & Mitchell S.C.

    Business law

    40

    Wisconsin Crime & Justice Blog

    Mastantuono & Coffee, S.C.

    Criminal defense

    41

    Wisconsin DUI Law Blog

    Melowski & Associates

    DUI defense

    42

    Wisconsin Unemployment Law Blog**

    Victor Forberger

    Unemployment law, labor and employment law

    * Blog affiliated with a law firm with fewer than 20 attorneys. At least 12 posts in 2019 and at least four posts in 2020. If the blog does not have an actual name, the law firm name is used.

    ** These are “independent” blogs. They are not affiliated or branded by a law firm. However, this list still notes the law firm or entity of the independent blogger listed.

    15 Wisconsin Larger Firm Blogs*

    Blog

    Firm Affiliation

    Practice Area

    43

    Axley Brynelson Blog

    Axley Brynelson LLP

    General

    44

    Dewitt Ross & Stevens Blogs

    Dewitt Ross & Stevens S.C.

    8 blogs, various topics

    45

    Foley & Lardner Blogs

    Foley & Lardner LLP

    Various blogs, various topics

    46

    Godfrey & Kahn Blogs

    Godfrey & Kahn S.C.

    2 blogs, labor and employment, insurance

    47

    Hall Render Blog

    Hall Render Killian Health & Lyman P.C.

    Health law

    48

    Husch Blackwell Blogs

    Husch Blackwell LLP

    Various blogs, various topics

    49

    O’Neil Cannon Hollman Dejong & Laing Blogs

    O’Neil Cannon Hollman Dejong & Laing S.C.

    Labor and employment; tax and wealth.

    50

    On Point

    Wisconsin State Public Defender

    Criminal defense

    51

    Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren Blog

    Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren S.C.

    General

    52

    SmithAmendsen Labor & Employment Blog

    SmithAmundsen LLC

    Labor & employment

    53

    Stafford Rosenbaum Blog

    Stafford Rosenbaum LLP

    General

    54

    The Blue Ink Blogs

    Ruder Ware

    Employment, banking, tax, municipal law, health care

    55

    The Weld Report

    Weld Riley S.C.

    General

    56

    von Briesen & Roper Blog

    von Briesen & Roper S.C.

    General

    57

    Writing on Your Rights

    Hawks Quindel S.C.

    Labor and employment; family law; employee benefits; and personal injury

    * More than 20 lawyers. At least 12 posts in 2019 and at least four posts in 2020. Some larger firms maintain multiple blogs. They are not listed separately. If the blog does not have an actual name, only the law firm name is noted.

    13 Active State Bar of Wisconsin Blogs*

    58

    Agricultural Law and Rural Practice Blog

    59

    Business Law Section Blog

    60

    Children and the Law Section Blog

    61

    Construction and Public Contract Section Blog

    62

    Environmental Law Section Blog

    63

    Family Law Section Blog

    64

    Health Law Section Blog

    65

    Labor & Employment Blog

    66

    Litigation Section Blog

    67

    Nonresident Lawyers Blog

    68

    Public Interest Section Blog

    69

    Real Property and Probate Trust Law Blog

    70

    Taxation Law Section Blog

    * These blogs meet the criteria as “active” blogs, with at least 10 posts in 2019 and at least three posts in 2020.

    5 Emerging State Bar of Wisconsin Blogs*

    71

    Appellate Practice Section Blog (Sua Sponte)

    72

    Dispute Resolution Section Blog

    73

    International Practice Section Blog

    74

    Real Property and Probate Trust Law Blog

    75

    Taxation Law Section Blog

    * These blogs don’t yet meet the criteria as “active” blogs because they are new or did not post at least 10 times in 2019.

    4 Wisconsin Academic Law Blogs

    Blog

    Affiliation

    Practice Area

    76

    Althouse Blog

    Ann Althouse, U.W. Law School

    General

    77

    M.U. Law School Faculty Blog

    M.U. Law School

    General

    78

    ScowStats Blog

    Alan Ball, Marquette University

    Statistics on the Wisconsin Supreme Court

    79

    WisBlawg

    U.W. Law School

    Legal research

    Coming Soon: WisLawNOW Brings Together Wisconsin’s Community of Legal Bloggers

    This summer, the State Bar of Wisconsin will launch a new online community exclusive for Wisconsin legal bloggers, Called WisLawNOW, this community brings together blog content written by State Bar of Wisconsin members under a single website.

    This network is developed in partnership with LexBlog, a legal blogging network of more than 25,000 bloggers nationwide.

    Many Wisconsin legal bloggers have already joined this legal blogging community to expand their reach, showcase their expertise, and contribute to this digital collection of legal information in many practice areas.

    Why WisLawNOW?

    1. Creates community of Wisconsin legal bloggers that readers can access in one place.

    2. Improves member access to a growing, timely library of legal knowledge that is searchable and responsive to mobile devices. And, members can find or subscribe to content of specific interest through practice-area channels.

    3. Uses technology to expedite information delivery and extend the reach of member-generated content, potentially leading to lawyer-to-lawyer and consumer referrals.

    No Cost to Join WisLawNOW

    WisLawNOW is a member benefit of State Bar membership. Legal bloggers who join WisLawNOW will continue to publish on their regular platforms, and RSS technology will automatically pull their blog posts into the WisLawNOW website.

    The blog author’s law firm and profile will be highlighted in the post, linking back to the original blog post. To get an idea of what it might look like, take a look at a similar blog aggregator offered by the Illinois State Bar Association, called IllinoisLawyerNow.

    Blog posts must meet the Blog Post Inclusion Criteria. WisLawNOW will feature blogs related to the practice of law, including substantive legal developments, analysis of legislation or regulatory change, practice management and technology issues, lawyer ethics, lawyer wellbeing, and other topics that relate to the work of Wisconsin lawyers.

    To increase readership of this blog content, the State Bar expects to distribute an email digest to members every other week to showcase the best of this content.

    This email means greater distribution of your blog post. In essence, WisLawNOW allows Wisconsin legal bloggers to amplify their message, creates a community of legal bloggers, and allows readers to access all Wisconsin legal blogs in one place.

    The State Bar is actively onboarding member-bloggers for a full launch in early July. To be included in WisLawNOW, members must complete a short online form.

    After filling out the form, the blog will be reviewed for substance and technical requirements. For more information, read WisLawNOW’s FAQ.

    Join now




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