Web 2.0 – Leveraging New Media to Maximize Your Securities & Compliance Practice

On February 17, 2009, Securities Docket is sponsoring a webcast that will look at the numerous ways that securities and compliance counsel and professionals can now use web 2.0 to promote, market, and network themselves, their practices and their firms as never before.

Please join Bruce Carton, Editor of Securities Docket, and me for a webcast that will discuss the best new tools and strategies available to securities and compliance counsel and professionals, including:

  • RSS;
  • Social Media, such as Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook;
  • Blogs;
  • and much more.

To attend this webcast scheduled for February 17, at 2 pm Eastern, please sign up on the Securities Docket website.

Social Networking for Lawyers and Legal IT

The International Legal Technology Association is holding a lunch presentation in Boston on Social Networking for Lawyers and Legal IT.

Please join us for this exciting presentation and learn how the lawyers and IT staff at your firm can use Facebook, LinkedIn and blogs to capture knowledge and uncover expertise.


Doug Cornelius is a senior attorney in Goodwin Procter’s Real Estate Group helping clients invest in real estate through a variety of investment vehicles.  In addition to his real estate practice, Doug is a member of the firm’s Knowledge Management Department.  In this role, he is responsible for developing and implementing tools and resources to identify, create, represent and distribute knowledge for reuse, awareness and learning.  Doug is a frequent speaker and writer on the legal profession’s use of knowledge management, enterprise 2.0, Web 2.0 and social networks.

Jenn Steele is the Director of Information Technology at Morrison Mahoney LLP.  She holds an MBA from the Simmons School of Management and a B.S. in Biology from MIT, with a minor in Expository Writing.  Prior to Morrison Mahoney, she was the Director of Information Technology at Donovan Hatem LLP from 2002-2007, and the Senior Applications Specialist at Burns & Levinson LLP from 2000-2002.  She has also held positions in the health and human services industry.  She is the author of Leading Geeks, a blog focusing on best practices for leading technologists (www.leadinggeeks.blogspot.com).

Robert Ambrogi is an internationally known legal journalist and a leading authority on law and the Web.  He represents clients at the intersection of law, media and technology and is also established professional in alternative dispute resolution.  Robert is a Massachusetts lawyer, writer and media consultant and is author of the book, The Essential Guide to the Best (and Worst) Legal Sites on the Web.  He also writes the blog Media Law, co-writes Legal Blog Watch and cohosts the legal affairs podcast Lawyer2Lawyer.


Social Networking for Lawyers

I am in New York City today participating in a panel on Social Networking for Lawyers sponsored by New York Legal Marketing Marketing Association. I will be joining  Robert Ambrogi of Legal Line, David Johnson a member of the advisory board of Legal OnRamp and John Lipsey of Martindale Hubbell.

The LMA put together this reading list for further reading:

Social Networking Articles

Social Networks Get Down to Business
eMarketer Daily Newsletter, August 18, 2008

LinkedIn: A Competitive Intelligence Tool
By Shannon Sankstone, Marketing the Law Firm Newsletter, August 14, 2008

The Social Network as a Career Safety Net
By Sarah Jane Tribble, The New York Times, August 13, 2008

Social Networking: For Lawyers Only?
By Robert J. Ambrogi, Law Technology News, August 8, 2008

Social Networking May Pay off in the End
By Robert Ambrogi, Law Technology News, June 9, 2008

Exclusive First Look at Martindale Hubbell Connected
By Robert Ambrogi, Legalline, July 31, 2008

LinkedIn to My Facebook on My Blog – Social Media for Lawyers and Law Firm Staff
By Jenn Steele and Doug Cornelius
Published in ILTA’s March, 2008 white paper titled, Marketing Technologies – Putting Your Best Face Forward

Social Networking Surveys & White Papers

Humans Seek Connections: The Case for Online Social Networking
LMA Resource Committee, with Jayne Navarre

Networks for Counsel Study:  Online Networking in the Legal Community
Independent research, sponsored by LexisNexis

Social Media in the Inc. 500: The First Longitudinal Study
The University of Massachusetts Dartmouth Center for Marketing Research

Social Networking Sites

LinkedIn  www.linkedin.com
Facebook  www.facebook.com
Legal OnRamp  www.legalonramp.com
Twitter  www.twitter.com

The Paperless Practice Toolkit: Taming the technology tiger

I will be presenting on collaborative tools and knowledge management on October 1 in Boston as part of a Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education program.

The Paperless Practice Toolkit: Taming the Technology Tiger

Despite the widespread availability of paperless technologies, many attorneys continue to use paper documents to conduct and manage their practices. Every time a document is printed or photocopied, potential efficiencies are lost and unnecessary costs may be incurred. Paper documents are not searchable or sortable. They can become easily disorganized. They require physical storage space in binders, boxes, and cabinets. They are expensive to ship and to archive. Every duplicate set costs as much to copy as the first set, and every time documents are disassembled for copying their condition is degraded.
There are many cost-effective alternatives to a traditional paper-based practice. For litigation attorneys, these can include electronic discovery (whether of existing electronic files or by scanning existing paper files) and the electronic presentation of evidence at trial. For transactional attorneys, this can include searchable electronic transaction binders and deal rooms rather than hardcopy collections. For all attorneys, this can include the use of electronic document management tools, organizational tools, and search and retrieval tools. Many of these tools are inexpensive and intuitive to use and can be incorporated smoothly into a traditional paper practice.
This program provides you with all the tools you need to make your practice completely paperless.
You will learn…
  • The economic benefits of using scanning rather than copying
  • Simple business practices to organize your cases electronically
  • Cost-effective alternatives to paper discovery and production
  • The use of electronic closing binders for organizing transactional documents
  • How to use knowledge-management systems to mine your firm’s work-product
  • The use of inexpensive search tools
  • How to conduct a simple but effective paperless trial
Agenda and electronic written materials
  • Key Steps to Going Paperless
  • A Practical Guide to the Latest Technology
  • Demonstrations of the Newest Tools
  • “Ask the Experts” Q&A Session

Web 3.0 Attorney Social Networking

Next month, I will be speaking with Paul Lippe and Robert Ambrogi on Social Networking for Attorneys for the New York Legal Marketing Marketing Association.

I am not sure why they are using a Web 3.0 designation for the program. That will really annoy the semantic Web 3.0 guys.

Even with the odd moniker, it should be a great program. Here is a more detailed description:

Most law firms have experience using some sort of web technology, particularly with their own websites and associated blogs, podcasts, alumni mini-sites, client extranets and the like. A firm’s online presence has become a fundamental element of its overall marketing and communications strategy. But in today’s online world, static web pages and one-sided blogs are beginning to resemble the land-line phone: great as a basic tool for communicating, but definitely not the only – or the best – connection to the world.

New and emerging technologies are providing an interactive experience and allowing users to create their own networks of connections and information. These changes are already having a direct impact on business development and enhanced client service. Online tools such as LinkedIn, Legal OnRamp, and TakeLegalAdvice, strengthen attorney-client relationships and foster collaborative efforts between law firms and in-house legal departments. The web as we know it is changing. Again.

Don’t let your firm be left clinging to that land-line! Stay abreast of this exciting (and profitable) technological leap by joining us to hear from professionals at the forefront of this continually evolving technology. Led by moderator Robert Ambrogi, our panel of experts will guide attendees through practical approaches that your firm can and should be considering in this brave new world.

Web 2.0 for Professional Development

On Friday, the Professional Development Consortium invited me to co-lead some table discussions on Web 2.0 for professional development.  The PDC is a group for those “working in-house at law firms, government agencies and corporations who are charged with the responsibility of developing and administering the training and professional development for lawyers.”

Chris Boyd and I led two discussions on  how web 2.0 tools can help with professional development. We started off using Jessica Lipnack’s technique of asking the audience to introduce themselves and why they were here. The topic was only briefly described and very open-ended, so Chris and I were prepared to talk about a wide range of use of Web 2.0/enterprise 2.0 tools. Most of the audience claimed ignorance of web 2.0, but wanted to learn more. Most did not know what a wiki was.

Chris and I started off with a few examples of how wikis can be used:

  • Chris and I use an external wiki to help communicate and organize information for ILTA’s Knowledge Management Peer Group’s Steering Committee
  • I am using a wiki to plan a meeting of Toronto and New York law firm knowledge management leaders.
  • I use a wiki to manage one of my client teams.  
  • My knowledge management department uses a wiki to manage our projects. 

We gave the audience a handout containing the wikis and happiness picture and my Wiki While You Work article published by ILTA. Most of the discussion focused on using wikis to help manage their own internal projects.  I think the instigation was the wikis and happiness picture showing the differences between using email to collaborate and a wiki to collaborate.

The audience really grabbed onto the concepts. We turned tables of skeptics in tables of bobbing heads by the end.  Chris ran into one of the participants at dinner that night. She had already gone back to her room, built a wiki on PBwiki and announced it to her group.  I think the session was a great success.

Thanks to Bridget Huffstutler and Scott Westfahl for inviting me to the PDC Conference. A big thanks to my co-presenter, Chris Boyd.

Establishing the Digital Relationship Meeting

It was a great session this morning with the New England Chapter of the Professional Marketing Forum in Boston on Establishing the Digital Relationship.

Tim Parker of The Bloom Group started things off with a great overview of web 2.0 and its use by professional service firms. Tim is in the middle of a survey of the websites of the 80 largest professional services firms in the United States. This is a follow up to the The Bloom Group‘s 2006 report: From Electronic Brochure to Online Lead Generator: Powering Up the Professional Services Website.  Tim threw out some interesting numbers.

  • In 2006 only 6% of the websites had blogs. 
  • Now 20% have blogs.
  • In 2006, only 15% had RSS feeds. 
  • Now, 48% have RSS feeds.

Here are Tim’s slides:

I was up next, focusing on the use of blogs in professional service firms.  Largely, my pitch was that converting some of your existing activities and publications to a blog platform can yield great results.

This was my slidedeck:

Last up was Yuval Zukerman of Molecular Inc with his presentation So You Have a Blog. Now What?

Yuval focused on the viral nature of Web 2.0 and how it can quickly spread your message across collections and network. He called for the audience to move beyond the walled gardens of their own websites and into the social collections of information on the internet. Post your events in Upcoming. Post your photos in Flickr or Picassa. Display your presentation in SlideShare. Host your videos in YouTube.

This is Yuval’s slidedeck

Thanks to Bob Buday of The Bloom Group for inviting me to speak. I saw a few bobbing heads in the audience. I think some people got the message. I think I even saw light bulbs starting to glow over a few heads.

UPDATE: I added Tim’s slides after the original post.

Establishing the Digital Relationship

On Thursday morning I will be presenting to the New England Chapter of the Professional Marketing Forum in Boston on Web 2.0 as a marketing tool for professional service organizations. Here is more information:

Establishing The Digital Relationship

While other industries have been far more aggressive in using the latest Web technologies, professional services firms have not been sitting on the sidelines. As of this March, more than 25% of the 200 largest U.S. law firms had blogs, with the number of blogs growing by 49% since August 2007. Consulting firms such as Accenture are encouraging employees to blog. A number of management consulting firms have made their Websites more interactive and informative, using tools like RSS feeds to update clients and prospects on new articles and other information that they publish. Others have Facebook profiles that give job seekers and prospects information on a professional firm and allow people to talk to others about the firm. Accounting firms such as Deloitte has numerous webcasts and podcasts on different topics, and email subscriptions based on viewers’ preferences.

Despite all the excitement, convincing partners at many professional firms to experiment with and invest in such “Web 2.0” technologies is not easy. In this session, we’ll hear from two professional firms at the leading edge of using such technologies about their experiences – good, bad and ugly. We’ll also hear the interim results of a new study on the Web practices of the 80 largest consulting, law, accounting and IT services firms.

Featuring speakers from:

  • Goodwin Procter – Attorney Douglas E. Cornelius, a senior attorney in the law firm’s real estate practice and a member of its Knowledge Management department. He will discuss how his blogs have helped this major law firm create client awareness and share knowledge internally.
  • Molecular Inc. – Mr. Yuval Zukerman, a consultant at this large Boston-based interactive agency, who has worked with a number of firms including Ernst & Young, Sprite, PC Connection, Belo to develop highly engaging and interactive Web experiences. He will also discuss Molecular’s growing use of blogs to cultivate business.
  • The Bloom Group – Mr. Tim Parker, a principal of this professional services marketing firm, who will discuss the interim results of the firm’s research on how the largest professional firms are using Web 2.0 and other online technologies to market and sell their services.

Knowledge Management and Web 2.0

On Wednesday, I gave a presentation to the New York City regional group of International Legal Technology Association, on Knowledge Management and Web 2.0. It was a great crowd, full of questions and thoughts. You can see my slidedeck below. Like most of my presentations, the slides are mostly images. You can play slidedeck karaoke and try to follow along.

Knowledge Management and Web 2.0 Technologies

For those of you in New York City and who are members of the International Legal Technology Association, I will be speaking on Knowledge Management and Web 2.0 Technologies on July 23 to the New York Regional Group of ILTA:

Blogs, wikis and social networking are exploding in the consumer Web space. This session will discuss ways to leverage these tools inside the law firm for knowledge management, project management and many other purposes. The tools are fairly inexpensive and easy to learn for users. You can add tremendous value to your organization for very little cost.

UPDATED: With a fixed link to the event.http://tinyurl.com/5egzys

Speaking Engagements

I am currently working on an article entitled Wiki While You Work that will be included as part of the ILTA White Paper on Knowledge Management.

Then, I am off to Minnesota to speak to the Minnesota Association of Law Librarians:An Attorney’s Perspective on Web 2.0 and Enterprise 2.0
The growing use and acceptance of these tools in the legal industry is changing the ways lawyers practice, communicate, capture information and FIND information. We’ll get the perspective of an experienced lawyer and Knowledge Management practitioner when Doug Cornelius shows us how he uses these tools in everyday practice.

Then, I am off to Georgia to be part of a panel with Andrew McAfee at the Interwoven Legal I.T. Leadership Summit:Serving Multiple Generations: Role of Web 2.0 and Strategies for I.T.
Today’s workforce includes three or four generations of professionals, each with different motivations, expectations, and ways of learning, thinking, and working especially the newest generation. How do these younger associates work? What tools and processes do they prefer to use over the course of a day, and why? How do blogs, wikis, and social networking applications like Facebook apply to business in general and to legal in particular? Which aspects of Web 2.0 will have enduring value and be transformative, and which are likely to fade away? Do they really offer new potential for user-driven applications that do not require I.T. intervention or for engaging clients in new ways? What are the risk management implications? Is it possible to maintain standards and achieve economies of scale while servicing every part of the generational spectrum? An industry expert followed by moderated discussion helps attendees understand and debate how to develop I.T. strategies that straddle multiple generations and explores the reality and potential of Web 2.0 for the legal industry.

What Blogging Brings to Business

At the upcoming Enterprise 2.0 Conference in Boston, I will be sitting on a panel with Jessica Lipnack, Bill Ives, Patti Anklam and Cesar Brea.

What Blogging Brings to Business

Blogs are powerful communication platforms that allow you to capture information you find interesting and to share it with an “audience” who can talk back to you. This panel of five business bloggers with a combined blogging lifetime of 19 years has generated business, communicated the concerns of its customers, experimented, and broken new ground through their blogs. Topics we’ll cover include: Blogging as knowledge management, Blogging as a conversation, Blogging for “fame and fortune”, Blogging as a platform for experimentation, and Blogging to reduce internal spam. Come join us to share your experiences and have the chance to speak at length with experienced bloggers.

Come join us at the Enterprise 2.0 conference.

Are Social Networking Sites Knowledge Management?

Last week I presented to a gathering of law firm knowledge management leaders on social network sites. As I have been exploring various social network sites over the last year, I have also wondered if this was knowledge management? And if social network sites are not part of knowledge management what lessons can the knowledge management community learn from social network sites?

I explained my use of six social network sites: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Upcoming, Legal OnRamp and LawLink. There were a few common themes I tried to draw out.

The first theme was the power of the network and Metcalfe’s law. Any communications tool and any of these social network sites are only as powerful as the number of of people that use them. That first person with a fax machine was very bored until lots of other people also bought fax machines. I also pulled the lever on the way-back machine and made everyone think back ten years ago when email was just coming into law firms. Ten years ago, I clearly remember asking people if they had email and if I could send something to them by email instead of FedEx. My theory is that email has become ubiquitous, because it is ubiquitous. A social network site is popular because it is popular. The more people that use the medium, the more useful that medium becomes.

I was intrigued by Upcoming, a social network site focused on events. It became many times more useful as I connected with more people in Upcoming. Then I got the benefit of seeing the events that they were publicizing.

The second theme was connectivity. There is an incredible ability to connect with people and to jump into their stream of information. This ability on these external sites far exceeds anything that our law firms have inside our firewalls.

The next theme was the ability to communicate. On these sites, you are able to put more context around the communication. You can also communicate in a variety of different ways. Again, looking at our internal communication systems made our internal systems pale by comparison.

Another theme was the ability to share information across systems. For example, Twitter updates my Facebook status. The posts from this blog feed into my Facebook feed. Facebook, LinkedIn, and Upcoming all push out updates by RSS so they are pushed into my feedreader. I can also repackage the feeds into my friendfeed or lifestream.

One thing that jumps out at me is the ability identify and find expertise. Certainly one of the challenges of knowledge management is the ability to find and identify subject matter experts. These social network sites are chock full of ways to find expertise.

The final theme was cost. That is, these social network sites are free. So it is cheap and easy to experiment. You can see what things are useful to you and where the people you know are connecting.

Several people pointed out that they had resisted using these sites. But lately they have started joining and trying to figure out how to use them. I pointed back to Metcalfe’s law. These sites were becoming more interesting to them because more and more people that they know are using them. I also used Metcalfe’s law to explain my difference in interest between LawLink and Legal OnRamp. Both are social network sites targeted at lawyers. There are many more lawyers in LawLink. But more people I know are in Legal OnRamp. Therefore, Legal OnRamp is more useful to me.

I never reached an answer to the initial question. Because, of course, the answer depends on your definition of knowledge management. Since the group seemed to be interested in these social network sites, that is probably enough to indicate that at least some element of social network sites are associated with knowledge management.

My slides: (I am big believer in using slides to show what I mean, rather that what I am saying. So the slides are just pictures.)

Higher Productivity Increases the Bottom Line at Law Firms

I am one the speakers on an upcoming webinar: Higher Productivity Increases the Bottom Line at Law Firms.

In the document intensive world of corporate law, one of the fastest ways to achieve higher productivity is by providing immediate access to client information and automating the creation of corporate governance and ownership documents — your firm’s most tangible client deliverable.

In this presentation, seasoned veterans from Goodwin Procter, LexisNexis HotDocs, and Capstone Practice Systems will provide the information you need to quantify the value your firm can derive by implementing browser-based, hosted document assembly that can increase attorney and staff productivity, standardize best practices, streamline document production, ensure accuracy, and eliminate IT systems support.

The webinar is sponsored by International Legal Technology Association (ILTA) and Two Step Software.

You can access a replay of this webinar on the Two Step Website: Higher Productivity Increases the Bottom Line at Law Firms

Toronto New York KM Forum Wrap-Up

I put together some notes from the New York Toronto Law Firm Knowledge Management Forum:

Personal Knowledge Management
Making Knowledge Management Relevant in Client Development
Sorry I do not have notes on the Future Technology/Web 2.0 session. I do have the reading lists:

Here is also Ted Tjaden‘s notes: Personal Knowledge Management. It sounds like he has embraced my preaching on Web 2.0 and Facebook. From my poll of the room on blogging, it is unlikely that there will be any other blog posts from other attendees.

You may have noticed that the names of the presenters and their organizations do not appear in my posts. One tenet of the New York Large Law Firm Knowledge Management Group and its Toronto counterpart is to keep them limited to actual KM practitioners in law firms. The reason is to keep the groups candid and forth-coming. Something the members agree would be harder to do if clients, consultants or others were part of the group. In an open session we would need to present a rosy picture and only focus on the positives. We would hate for our frank discussions to cast any negative light on our law firms.

My notes are somewhat incomplete and murky in places to respect the tenets of forum.

Real Estate Development From Beginning to End in Massachusetts

I will speaking as part of the seminar: Real Estate Development From Beginning to End in Massachusetts in Dedham on November 16, 2007.


8:30 am – 9:30 am Site Selection and General Due Diligence
Matthew J. Lawlor, Esq.
9:30 am – 10:30 am Due Diligence – Land Use and Environmental Matters
Patrick M. Butler, Esq.

10:30 am – 10:40 am Break
10:40 am – 12:00 pm Site Acquisition: Negotiating and Drafting the Purchase Agreement
Matthew J. Lawlor, Esq.
12:00 pm – 1:00 pm Lunch (On Your Own)
1:00 pm – 2:30 pm Financing Your Acquisition and Construction
Douglas E. Cornelius, Esq.
  • Structuring the Capital
  • Choice of Entities
  • Mortgage Loans
  • Loan Application, Negotiating the Term Sheet and Mortgage Loan Documents
  • Converting to a Permanent Loan
  • Mezzanine Loans
  • Joint Ventures
2:30 pm – 2:40 pm Break
2:40 pm – 3:30 pm Comprehensive Regulatory Strategy: Expediting the Permitting Process
Patrick M. Butler, Esq.
3:30 pm – 4:10 pm Project Planning and Permitting Process
Patrick M. Butler, Esq.
4:10 pm – 4:30 pm Questions and Answers
Patrick M. Butler, Esq., Douglas E. Cornelius, Esq., and Matthew J. Lawlor, Esq.