In January 2007, I received an e-mail message from Ed., the mysterious and pseudonymous editor of Blawg Review. By that point, I'd hosted a couple of Blawg Reviews and become a "sherpa", assisting Ed. and the guest hosts to source material for each Monday's post. Over the lengthy time that I'd been corresponding with him, however, I'd never received a message like this one:
Subject: Living Will for Blawg Review - Open in Case of Emergency ;-)I was honored that he'd entrusted me with the keys to a project which he had nurtured so carefully for so long. I was amused that I felt such a sense of responsibility for a task given me by a man whose name I didn't know. When a couple years or so later I retired as a sherpa (true to form, Ed. never accepted that resignation, preferring to call it my "Sherpa Sabbatical"), he wrote, "Colin Samuels, Sherpa Emeritus, will always be a key player in Blawg Review (he's got the login and password keys) so he remains, officially, the editor in waiting should I kick the bucket. Truth be told, Colin is more afraid of that eventuality than I am." I most certainly was.
Though Blawg Review reached an unofficial ending of sorts more than a year ago, word of Ed.'s passing spread quickly last week amongst the many who'd written Blawg Reviews for him, who'd spoken with him at one of the many meet-ups and conferences he attended, who'd corresponded with him over the years, or who simply appreciated the tremendous contribution he'd made to our corner of the internet.
Shortly after hearing that sad news, Mark Bennett proposed a final edition of Blawg Review in Ed.'s memory; Scott Greenfield, Antonin Pribetić, Brian Tannebaum, Ken White, Eric Turkewitz, George Wallace, Gideon, Ron Coleman, and Mike Semple-Piggot joined his effort. Today, each of us will pay tribute to a man who played a central role in establishing the legal blogosphere. Starting with Greenfield's post, each chapter will link to the next, before returning to this post and closing the loop one last time.
It's our privilege to honor Ed., a man who gave the legal blogosphere a distinct voice, even though he never did tell us his name.
Blawg Review Sherpa Emeritus