Why a Wiki?

The KM Librarians blog has a short post on how Wikis are being used within organisations. The reasons Wikis make sense are...

  • Wikis are useful for Whiteboarding
  • Wikis allow team members to contribute whenever they want
  • Wikis reduce email traffice
  • Wikis minimize "version conflict"
  • Wikis preserve the backstory of the history of a project

All good reasons for using a Wiki.

Legal Online communities : An opportunity waiting to happen

Paul Lippe Founder and Chief Executive of Legal OnRamp has written an interesting piece in the most recent issue of Legal Week. In it Paul argues that for lawyers to dismiss applications like Facebook and other Social Networking sites as a fad is a mistake. Why? well Paul argues that the development of online communities is an important step for the legal sector and in many ways an online legal community reflects laws traditional "community model"

Not convinced? Paul then lists 10 reasons why an online social community is suited to law:

  • Law is a social profession
  • Legal content and expertise are developed and shared socially.
  • A social platform is the easiest way to go global.
  • A social platform can address clients’ demand for greater efficiency
  • A social platform can be used to manage privileged work.
  • A social platform gets lawyers closer to clients.
  • Social platforms will change the competitive dynamics of law.
  • Participating in the broader community is the best way to energize your own community.
  • An online community could prevent future shock.
  • Social platforms are not about technology, they are about people.

The toughest 10k in Kent?

Yesterday morning myself and 414 other brave souls took to the roads and woods around Orpington to run the Orpington 10k. I ran this race last year and posted a rather poor 52:50, so I was hoping for a much improved time, unfortunately I forgot how tough the course was...

...not only did runners have to contend with the usual obstacles, other runners, thigh high stinging nettles, low hanging branches, tree roots and numerous gates and stiles but there were also a number of bizzare man made obstacles including, members of the public trying to take runners out, children collecting footballs from the route, children sledging your haircut (harsh when you have just run 9k) and the police (to be fair the last did a good job)...so I was disappointed but not too disappointed to post a time of 49:06 and end up 128th out of the total field.

My next race is the JP Morgan Chase Challenge on the 9th of July, followed by tbe Cliffe Woods 10k on the 13th of July.

Why Web 2.0 - Part 2 - Edinburgh

Last Friday saw me take to the skies and visit the rather lovely Scottish City of Edinburgh to present on Web 2.0 to the Scottish Law Librarians Group. This was a re-run of my previous talk to the City Legal Information Group, with some updates to the slides and additional content to reflect my location! Overall I think the Seminar went well and those people I spoke to after the seminar said they found it useful. One thing I will be doing is reducing the number of slides I have to a more manageable level, I'll also probably only focus on one or two specific areas rather then try and cover absolutely every possible Web 2.0 application a Law Librarian could use! Anyway the slides are embedded below so enjoy!

Leaping into the Dark : Web 2.0 and law firms websites

This is the title of an interesting article in the latest issue of the Society of Computers and Law journal. In it the author looks at the ways in which law firms are adapting their websites to take account of Web 2.0 technology. The article is the result of a survey undertaken by Intendance Research

One of the highlights from the article is the following "The same survey contains the following statistic: 65% of respondents agree that incorporating Web 2.0 will be a key component of their online strategy within the next 1-2 years. This clearly shows that the majority of firms are warming to the potential benefits of Web 2.0, yet the overriding feeling is that many firms are unsure of which applications work best for which audiences"

So it would seem that Law Firms feel that incorporating Web 2.0 technologies into Web sites is a good thing but there are some concerns around what "will work best" and not alienate the users of the site. An interesting article, if you wish to read it you will need to be a member of the SCL to read this article.

Casefiles Wiki

As reported by the Knowledge Thoughts Blog Headshift have launched a new site (Wiki) which has a collection of Case Studies of firms/businesses using Enterprise 2.0 Tools including tools like Blogs and Wikis.

The site even has a section for Legal/Professional Services firms.

A list to beat all lists

I love the iLibrarian blog I really do and I'm not afraid to say it, why because they post some really useful resources on a regular basis. Recent posts have included the following:

All I can say is keep up the good work iLibrarian!

Not really Web 2.0...

...but I thought readers might be interested in a presentation I prepared for a meeting with the Legal Publishers Executive that was scheduled to take place the day before the BIALL Conference. The presentation looks at some of the "Current trends in the purchasing and supply of electronic products" enjoy...

BIALL Conference 2008

Last week myself and 399 other Law Librarians attended the 39th Annual BIALL Conference. This was held in the lovely and very welcoming city of Dublin. The Conference was called "Beyond the Pale" with the general theme being planning for the next information generation.

There were a number of sessions that I was quite excited about attending, including Lesley Robinsons' Plenary Session on the Information to Knowledge Process and "Web 2.0: the Yellow Brick Road or Fools Gold?" The second of these sessions included a short presentation by Martin De Saulles, the slides from this presentation and the presentation he delivered on Friday are available on his blog "Information Matters" this was an interesting session the high point was hearing Sue Hill speak passionately about Web 2.0 despite the fact two weeks ago she didn't know a huge amount about it. It just proved in my mind how infectious Web 2.0 can be and how enthusiastic people are about it and the potential it has for delivering new and exciting services to our users.

Web 2.0 was also discussed in Sues' session "Will Librarians be needs in 2010?" the answer to this was yes of course, but only if we learn to adapt to the changes that are taking place in our profession and whilst doing so, start learning new stuff!

The session I was most looking forward to was of course the one I was chairing! this was delivered by Steve Weiter and was called "Who is really computer savvy?" the session looked at practical applications of Web 2.0 in Libraries (predominantly the US). This was a thought provoking session that certainly made me think about how we are currently using Web 2.0 technologies and what we can do to encourage users to use these new technologies and also how using these new technologies can create their own problems. I'm hoping Steve will make his slides available online, so watch this space.

Overall a really interesting Conference although I am still to traumatised to leave my office, guitars can be dangerous in the wrong hands!

Bluewater 10k 2008

After what can only be described as a not quite normal build up to a 10k race (having spent the previous four days in Dublin enjoying the many delights that Ireland has to offer) I still managed to drag my weary body to the start line of the Bluewater 10k.

This was a race I had hoped to do quite well in having run a 48 minute 10k last year, this was a slightly different route (one major hill now became a downhill) so I was overjoyed when I reached the finish line in a time of 44:38 and came 182nd out of 1646 runners! My next race is the Orpington 10k on Sunday the 22nd.

I will also shortly be posting about the BIALL Conference and the many discussions about Web 2.0 that took place there, so watch this space.

I'm off...

...to the BIALL Conference next week so there wont be any posts on this blog for a while.

You might still catch me posting on the BIALL Blog, If I can secure an Internet Cafe! I hope to see some of my readers at the Conference next week.

An active Law Librarian is a happy Law Librarian

I don't often talk about Marketing because it's not something I do a huge amount of (maybe I should) but a recent post on the Library Stuff Blog caught my eye. In a post called Marketing the Law Librarian the author says the following:

"I firmly believe that law librarians need to continue to market their skills and knowledge in order to not be passed by someone (or something) else. While we know that we’re good, does everyone else in the firm know that? Enter the marketing department. This is what they do best, and by becoming a part of their team, they will start marketing your skills as well"

Too right, tommorow my marketing plan starts!

Internet Librarian International...such a shame

Earlier this year I submitted a proposal to the committee organising Internet Librarian International to talk about how Web 2.0 is being used within Law Firms, some of the practical challenges in adopting Web 2.0 technologies and what Law Librarians can do to with Web 2.0 in these situations.

The good news is my submission was accepted YEAH!!

The bad news is I'm going to be on Holiday!

...what a shame...