Denise Howell Denise Howell
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Dennis M. Kennedy Dennis M. Kennedy
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Tom Mighell Tom Mighell
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Marty Schwimmer Marty Schwimmer
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Ernest Svenson Ernest Svenson
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Denise Howell is a seasoned appellate and intellectual property litigator based in Los Angeles. Denise writes one of the first and most popular law-related blogs, Bag and Baggage, coined the term "blawg" and helped pioneer podcasting for lawyers. Microcontent obsessed since 2001, she is frequently quoted in the media on legal issues involving intellectual property and technology law. "Sound Policy" is Denise's show at IT Conversations, and it's also what she hopes results from the briefs she submits to court. Email Denise at

Dennis Kennedy is a computer lawyer and legal technology expert based in St. Louis, Missouri. An award-winning author, a frequent speaker and a widely-read blogger, he has more than 300 publications on legal, technology and Internet topics, many of which are collected in his e-books. Dennis has been described as someone who knows almost every rock song in existence and, more importantly, how they apply to technology and law. Email Dennis at his gmail address.

Tom Mighell is Senior Counsel and Litigation Technology Support Coordinator at Cowles & Thompson in Dallas. He has published the Internet Legal Research Weekly newsletter since 2000 and blogged about the Internet and legal technology at Inter Alia since August of 2002. With Tom's singing, Ernie on guitar and Dennis' encylopedic knowledge of rock music, we may have the beginnings of a good band, if this whole blog thing doesn't work out. Email Tom at

Marty Schwimmer left a partnership in the largest trademark practice in the world and founded Schwimmer Mitchell, a full-service IP micro-boutique in Westchester County, New York, where he represents owners of famous and not yet famous trademarks. He founded The Trademark Blog, the first IP law blog and the one with the most pictures. He is the first to come in and the last to leave in his firm. Email Marty at

Ernest Svenson practices law with a mid-sized law firm in New Orleans, specializing in business-related lawsuits. Most of his practice takes place in federal court, especially the Eastern District. He is best known for his weblog Ernie the Attorney, which he started as an experiment. Like many experiments it got out of control. Nevertheless, he continues to practice law and, occasionally, to seek enlightenment. Email Ernest at
About this blog
Between Lawyers provides just-in-time group commentary on the issues raised when technology, culture and the law intersect. We take you behind the firewalls and conference room doors to show you how experienced lawyers deal with these issues and help you prepare for the new challenges we all face. For more, see our introductory post.

Between Lawyers

Monthly Archives

March 29, 2007

March 19, 2007

Collaboration Tools for Lawyers - The Book

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Posted by Dennis M. Kennedy

Between Lawyers' own Dennis Kennedy and Tom Mighell are pleased to announce that they will be writing a book on collaboration tools that will be published in early 2008 by the American Bar Association. The book is tentatively titled: "Collaboration Tools for Lawyers: Essential Ways to Work Together with Colleagues, Clients and Even Opposing Counsel."

Nearly every lawyer finds that colleagues, co-counsel, clients and even opposing counsel use the Internet and technology to collaborate and work together on documents, projects and cases. In the simplest scenario, lawyers and clients use the "track changes" feature in Microsoft Word to work together on a document. Technology today lets lawyers take collaboration to the next level. Many legal technology tools now include collaborative elements.

At the same time, lawyers increasingly use the Internet in many ways to work together. From document sharing to videoconferencing, there are more tools than most lawyers can imagine for working together, online.

Two key trends are at play here. First, for years lawyers have understood the clear benefits of collaboration and working together as a routine matter. Second, the availability of simple, inexpensive (even free) collaboration technology has created an environment where working together makes sense to nearly every lawyer in nearly every firm. The push forward on both trends is likely to continue.

Two other important factors also come into play. First, business clients are routinely using technology to collaborate and will expect their lawyers to follow. Therefore, collaboration tools illustrate a classic example of a client-driven technology. Second, events in the world from increased travel costs to possible pandemics make it even more likely that these tools will be adopted by necessity.

To the extent lawyers have experimented with these tools, they may have the nagging feeling that they are simply touching the tip of the iceberg of what might be available to them and how they might use these tools to their benefit. We believe that they are right to feel that way, because it is undoubtedly true.

The book will provide intensely practical advice for lawyers and law firms wanting to take better advantage of these tools and the benefits they bring. It will take a look at how to use these tools wells, focus on both categories of tools and specific individual tools, and provide concrete action steps and techniques so that even the least tech-savvy lawyer can catch up with the early adopters and successful innovators.

Collaboration Tools for Lawyers: Essential New Ways to Work Together with Colleagues, Clients and Even Opposing Counsel, by Dennis Kennedy and Tom Mighell (expected publication date: early 2008)

Comments (0) + TrackBacks (0) | Category: BL News | Law 2.0 | Legal Technology | Web 2.0

March 18, 2007

March 15, 2007

More Questions About Recent Legal Marketing Restrictions

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Posted by Dennis M. Kennedy

Legal marketing guru Burkey Belser takes a few stabs at the recent New York and Florida efforts to restrict legal advertising and communications in his post "Rotten to the Core." I agree with his assessment that the law of unintended consequences will apply many times over with these rules and the risks of arbitrary enforcement are quite high.

The money quote:

One wonders if federal regulation of legal marketing will ever overtake the state-by-state model currently saddling the profession. So many firms have so many offices across so many state lines that the old regulatory model hardly makes sense anymore.

There's good practical advice in the post and a helpful chart you can download.

Comments (0) + TrackBacks (0) | Category: Legal Ethics and Advertising

March 13, 2007

March 9, 2007

Podcast on the law of business communities

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Posted by Denise Howell

The conference call Mike Madison and I recorded earlier this week in anticipation of our session at Community 2.0 (more here and here) is now available as part of the Bag and Baggage Podcast or from the Future of Communities blog.  We talked about:

  • Defining community and loosely-joined individuals and interest groups
  • Community goals and governance (or lack thereof)
  • External innovation communities such as Procter & Gamble's and ownership issues
  • Intellectual and liability concerns for company-owned or associated communities
  • Whether an initiative similar to the Creative Commons movement has or is in the process of emerging
  • Ownership issues and risk-minimization around products or services that emerge from external ideas
  • Variations on open source licenses
  • Individual rights and protections for community contributors and participants
  • Anonymity and accountability
  • Nefarious community exploitation: gaming, hacking, spamming
  • Trust and reputation management
  • The use of trademark law to use and manage community involvement; selective enforcement, the expansion of certification marks
  • Insurance industry mechanisms and models
  • Defamation
  • Company-sponsored (and owned) communities, and the actions taken by participants who find the terms and conditions of such initiatives too draconian
  • "Innovator's dilemma" management and patent strategy and the tension between old, successful products and those developed with help from outsourced customer communities
  • Personal data ownership and the Attention Trust

Comments (0) + TrackBacks (0) | Category: BL on Tour | Blogging Legal Developments | Blogging Policies | Copyright | Ethics, Decorum and Manners | Intellectual Property and Technology Law

March 8, 2007

March 7, 2007

Take Two: Public Conference Call On The Law Of Business Communities

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Posted by Denise Howell

Our rescheduled conference call in anticipation of Community 2.0 (details here) takes place today at 1:00 p.m. PST/3:00 p.m. EST.  Call-in details are here, please join us if you are interested.

Comments (0) + TrackBacks (0) | Category: BL on Tour | Blogging Legal Developments | Blogging Policies | Copyright | Ethics, Decorum and Manners | Intellectual Property and Technology Law