How to Feed a Lawyer (and Other Irreverent Observations from the Legal Underground)

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bob coffield


Thanks for pointing out the KY Law Blawg info. I was not aware of the KY Law blog before your post. Since KY borders WV I often deal with border issues and it will be good to have a blog covering KY issues for me to monitor on a regular basis.

Also, I've watched with fascination the online discussion of blawg vs. blog. I just want to make sure that I am recognized as the first to coin the phrase "doggers". There is a growing group of doggers out there -- here is a link to our local West Virginia dogger.

I enjoy your posts. bob

The Common Scold

O.K. I'm gonna be a contrarian. This may surprise you -- especially because one of my absolute missions in life is to obliterate jargon -- and especially the word solution --from the English language -- but i don't mind blawg.

Why: because it adds meaning to blog. It accurately describes a specific thing. You see "blawg" and you know that it is a law-related blog. It defines, it narrows, and it doesn't obscucate (sp?)

I have NO problem with blawg. Now if we could work on robust, mission-critical, enterprise, strategic, initiative, -centric, form factor........


One problem is that "blawg" doesn't work as a spoken word at all. I learned that doing podcasts. If I need to use the word--for example, because I'm talking about "Blawg Review" or "BlawgThink"--I have to spell it out. "That's Blawg Review where blawg is spelled b-l-a-w-g." Otherwise anyone listening will automatically think "Blog Review."

bob coffield

Excellent point Kevin. I had not thought about blawg and blog being homophones. Maybe we could start adding additional em-PHA-sis on the "wg" to distinguish the two while speaking and podcasting.


Call a blog, blawg, weblog or website whatever you want. Maybe the issue is that some people just need to stop censoring what we call things.

Prof Yabut

Thank you for this post, Evan. Other than not wanting our message to be considered (and bumped up in search engine results), it is hard to explain why Dennis and Denise didn't bother to link to us. For those who haven't got time to read my entire piece, I just posted this:

"Quick Summary: Lawyers don't need a special word to
designate their weblogs. Weblog technology is not being
used in any special way at law sites. No other group or
profession has coined a special word for their category
of weblogs. By insisting on using the trivializing, confusing
and too-cute word "blawg," lawyers appear to be elitist, clan-
nish, or childish (likely, all three). Those who agree can help
stop the terminology from becoming a generally-accepted
part of the English language (and spread worldwide), by not
using the term "blawg" and by declaring their choice publically.

Monica, I don't agree that "blawg" adds significant meaning. If your audience already knows the proprietor is in the law community or the topic is law, it adds nothing. If they don't know that, just tell them, rather than using a word that does confuse the uninitiated, and can refer to anything for George Wallace's "Fool in the Forest," and my multi-topic weblog, to "How Appealing"'s small blurbs and the major essays of Judge Posner.

Prof Yabut

Kevin, We're not telling, we're asking -- and we're explaining why the term "blawg" does more harm than good. We're also making the point that those who dissent from terminology coined by insiders (and spread by the internet) can use the internet to help make the neologism less acceptable, and perhaps even obsolete.

David Giacalone

p.s. to Monica, I should have included (in the point that "blawg" does not "accurately define a specific thing" or narrow) that the term is applied to everything from 1L daily diaries (and even pre-law angst sites) to in-depth commentary on current law and polical issues by distinguished law professors.

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