Blawg Review

It's not just a blog carnival; it's the law! ~ a fool in the forest

Blawg Review #300

The Battle for Blawg Review of the Year

Like the movie business, with its Academy Awards, the business of blog reviewing is highly competitive. The rewards are immeasurable. It's not about money; lawyers have easier ways to make a buck. No, it's about writing some epic piece, an incomparable Blawg Review, that will leave adversaries in awe and ensure the continuing loyalty of a small army of followers.

Before this battle is over the world will know that few stood against many and, in the end, there is only one Blawg Review of the Year 2010.

Blawg Review is the blog carnival for everyone interested in law. A peer-reviewed blog carnival, the host of each Blawg Review decides which of the submissions and recommended posts are suitable for inclusion in the presentation. And the host is encouraged to source another dozen or so interesting posts to fit with any special theme of that issue of Blawg Review. The host's personal selections usually include several that reflect the character and subject interests of the host blawg, recognizing that the regular readership of the blog should find some of the usual content, and new readers of the blog via Blawg Review ought to get some sense of the unique perspective and subject specialties of the host. The host of each Blawg Review has complete control over the production; director's cut, if you will, in movie parlance. We think this brings out the best in the best.

Colin Samuels, who writes a pretty good review, himself, whenever he gets around to it, makes the point. "Where once we were isolated legal students, practitioners, and academics who could share our thoughts only with those in proximity, blogging and social media have turned us all into a kind of "other memory" for one another. The knowledge, experience, and insight we are able to access here, within our ever-expanding networks of colleagues and friends, colleagues-of-colleagues, friends-of-friends, is nothing short of amazing. By participating, we are able to give and receive and grow beyond ourselves while allowing others to grow as well. Thanks to our tools, these memories need not fade or become inaccessible, but we should always keep in mind that tools do not create — we do."

Let's revisit the creative presentations of Blawg Review in 2010 and see what our hosts have been up to this week, too, shall we? The first link in each paragraph below points to their respective presentation of Blawg Review, while the next link points to a recent post by that blogger. The best stuff is in the links. Click away, and enjoy!

CharonQC, with what was then his fifth Blawg Review (he's since hosted an impressive sixth) started the year off with a welcome from the Baron Mandelson of Foy, Prince of Darkness, First Secretary of State, Secretary of State for Business Innovation and Skills, Lord President of The Council and Witch Finder-General for H M Government…"You are unwise to lower your defenses" This week, Mike Semple Piggot and his friends at the bar covered a great deal of ground in the first episode of Without Prejudice, a round the table podcast: Assange verdict on extradition, European Arrest Warrants – The British Bill of Rights and the ECHR – The oversupply of lawyers …and we even had time to consider Garrow’s Law and Silk the BBC tv dramas on law and lawyers.

The Client Revolution gathered the best and the brightest from the blawgosphere for the first full week of the 2010s and looked at them through the lens of a crystal ball. Jay Shepherd has run the Boston management-side employment-law boutique Shepherd Law Group for the past 13 years. Jay also founded Prefix, LLC, which helps lawyers and clients value and price legal services. He writes the ABA Blawg 100 honoree The Client Revolution, which focuses on reinventing the business of law, and Gruntled Employees, a workplace blog, and still he finds time to contribute a regular column to Above the Law, Small Firms, Big Lawyers.

Gideon, blogging as A Public Defender, did justice to another of his thoughtful and inspiring Martin Luther King, Jr. Day editions of Blawg Review. But looney times are here again, and Gideon reports on an influx of bills in a new legislative session that make you go “stfu!”.

The Scots Law Student treated us to a traditional Burns Supper on Robbie Burns Day. Recently the Scots Law Student blogged about the human cost of control orders exemplified in a story in the Guardian about two men, best friends, sitting outside one of their homes talking, drinking and eating snacks. They cannot go inside.

Omar Ha-Redeye, a regular contributor to one of the leading Canadian law blogs,, marked the start of Black History Month, on National Freedom Day with a theme of African slavery in America, using the model of Alex Haley’s novel, Roots. In his latest article on, Omar reports on an interesting case involving, incidentally, a recent law graduate and others suing a zipline company, which was cleared over waiver.

Antonin Pribetic, writing on The Trial Warrior Blog, presented Blawg Review with a theme based on the Bushidō (武士道), or “the way of the warrior,” the moral code of the Samurai, the privileged warrior class of ancient Japan, whose philosophy of Bushidō emphasized loyalty, frugality, the mastery of martial arts, and “honor unto death.” This week, Nino demonstrated a “real and substantial connection” between his blog and his legal practice.

The Canadian Trademark Blog hosted Blawg Review from Vancouver: Olympic Host City. A recent blog post on the Canadian Trademark Blog reports on a recent case in the Province of British Columbia concerning the purchase of keywords of competitor institutions, so that when someone entered the name of the competitor in a GOOGLE or YAHOO! search, as well as the organic search results that would turn up for the competitor, such searches would also turn up prominent sponsored links or advertisements.

Jordan Furlong created a monster of a Blawg Review based on Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, which he hosted on Stem Legal's Law Firm Web Strategy blog. In his most recent post on that blog, Jordan writes about helping lawyers generate content for their blogs; pitfalls and possibilities.

Spring Break, South Florida Lawyers played host. Sounds like fun, but anyone who thinks Florida law is all beach bunnies in bikinis hasn't had a citrus canker.

Niki Black hosted Blawg Review, in celebration of International Women's Day, National Women's History Month, and the 30th anniversary of the National Women's History Project, on Sui Generis, her New York law blog. Niki published an ode to my mentors, and their dedication this week, as the latest of her regular columns in The Daily Record.

Law Shucks, the blog about “Life in, and after, BigLaw”, hosted Blawg Review on the Ides of March, marking the first anniversary of the worst month for law-firm layoffs in history, and other doom and gloom. On the bright side, this week, Law Shucks notes that some lawyers really are bargains at $1,000 an hour.

Blawg Review of the Year 2009 host Kevin Thompson put together an epic presentation on Cyberlaw Central in honor of the 45th anniversary of the best-selling science fiction book of all time, Frank Herbert’s Dune. Dune is often credited with raising awareness of our planet as a living complex organism, and has also been credited with supporting the movement now known as Earth Day. March 22, 2010 is also World Water Day, which makes Dune particularly relevant. On Arrakis, water is the most precious resource. Cyberlaw Central appears to have lapsed into a month-long coma after posting Kevin's latest Blawg Review. I blame dehydration.

To celebrate the first anniversary of 22 Tweets, a blog that posts Twitter interviews of practicing lawyers, Lance Godard put together a special version of Blawg Review. Are You Writing This Down? Are you talking the talk? Walking the walk?

Cathy Gellis, blogging on Statements of Interest, hosted Blawg Review celebrating the 300th anniversary of the birth of the Statute of Anne. Coincidental, I think not. Anyway, the rush of traffic hitting her last year's Blawg Review seems to have borked her blog.

Legal Blog Watch marked Five years of Blawg Review. What started as a "blog carnival" for everyone interested in law has grown into a community that comes together every week to review recent legal news, opinions, and commentary from an increasing number of remarkable law blogs. Seems like a good fit with ALM. We should talk.

Dan Vorhaus, on the Genomics Law Report, on DNA Day, established by Congressional resolution in 2003 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the description of the double-helix structure of DNA and to celebrate the publication of the final consensus human genome sequence produced by the Human Genome Project. This week, the Genomics Law Report has more news on DNA in forensics.

Jeremy Phillips at The IPKat hosted Blawg Review on the tenth World Intellectual Property Day. This week, Jeremy, wise old cat that he is, organized a special deal for students, trainees and recently-qualified IP professionals who are not TIPLO members and could not be expected to fork out £135 for delicious delights at Growltiger's IP Dinner. Purrrrrfect.

Matthew Frederick VanVoorhis, one of the few non-lawyers invited to put together a Blawg Review hosted at his Public Intellectual blog on World Press Freedom Day. This week, VanVoorhis was on Human Rights Radio.

She Negotiates hosted Blawg Review to celebrate Mothers Day. In addition to the main post, they also posted Blawg Review #263 on their She Networks, She Succeeds, She Transforms and She Resolves pages (up at the top of the blog). Then they deleted their Wordpress blog altogether, and started over on another blog platform. Oh noes, mom, you threw the baby out with the bathwater? And now you're thinking of asking for a raise?

Rossa McMahon at A Clatter of the Law hosted Blawg Review National Famine Commemoration Day, which marks the Great Famine in Ireland. Recently, on his blog, asked and answered the vexing question facing newlyweds in Ireland, "Do you own your wedding album?"

Marty Schwimmer hosted Blawg Review on The Trademark Blog while he was at the INTA Annual Meeting. In a recent post, Marty points to the claim in the case of Swatch v. Bloomberg and the issues of copyright in a conference call.

Quit Facebook Day (really, you can't make this shit up) seemed an appropriate day for Peter Black to host Blawg Review on Freedom to Differ, a blog that speaks freely about law, politics and the internet. Ironically, perhaps, talking on the telly this week about technology and the way it frames our world, Pete discusses an Egyptian man naming his first born "Facebook", a Facebook timestamp being used in a lawsuit, a computer taking on humans on a US quiz show, and the end of the bookstore.

Venkat Balasubramani hosted Blawg Review on Spam Notes, a law blog covering electronic communications, email, social networks, privacy, and more. This week, Venkat writes that Combines the Evils of Faux Curation and Spam.

David Harlow's Health Care Law Blog, HealthBlawg, hosted Blawg Review on Flag Day. David's latest post tells the fateful story of the medical record that didn't return. "It is fascinating... -- and possibly a wake-up call to folks concerned about loss of privacy due to digitization of health records -- that in this digital age, an age of lost laptops and stolen hard drives, an institution at the heart of Boston's identity as a medical Mecca is tripped up by carelessness with paper records."

Andrew Raff hosted Blawg Review on his blog, from New York on World Music Day. In his latest blog post, Andrew has a surprise: Authors Like Copyright.

Gulbransen at Preaching to Perverted went retro. Whoa, Dave!

Kevin Underhill hosted Blawg Review on Lowering the Bar to mark X-Day, the main holiday of the Church of the SubGenius. A recent blog post on Lowering the Bar discusses a case in which the judge had to decide if a pizza is a solid object for the purpose of a statute. Bacon. Hardly. Shook. Lunch ensued.

The Lawyerist hosted something. Don't know what that was, but it wasn't Blawg Review. This week, The Lawyerist suggests you might want to put a QR code on your business card. One commenter suggested no name even, just a QR code. Yeah, everyone should do that!

Joe and Richard at ninetyfiveyears took us back to the future. The boys haven't posted on their blog in, like, 95 years in blog years.

At the LoTempio Law Blog, patent attorney Vincent LoTempio marked the 20th anniversary of the Americans Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA). Recently, Vinny blogged about the Jeopardy IBM Challenge.

Charles H. Green is founder and CEO of Trusted Advisor Associates hosted Blawg Review on Trust Matters. This week, Charlie discusses Trust & Investment Banking: Interview with The Epicurean Dealmaker.

Blawg Review on's blog, Securing Innovation, focused not Intellectual Property but Indigenous Peoples to mark International Day of the World's Indigenous People. This week, they blogged about Presidents Day & Black History Month.

At the Chicago IP Litigation Blog, Dave Donoghue celebrated the Chicago Blackhawks winning the Stanley Cup in 2010. Recently reported on the Chicago IP Litigation Blog, a case where "even though individual defendant Riddick was the sole officer and employee of each co-defendant, the corporate defendants required representation because a corporation cannot represent itself pro se."

Law is Cool, the law school blog and podcast from Canada, hosted Blawg Review by Omar Ha-Redeye on the International Day for the Remembrance of the Slave Trade and its Abolition. In his most recent post on Law is Cool, Omar blogs about "perhaps one of the most bizzare products liaiblity cases we’ll see in some time."

Mirriam Seddiq at Not Guilty hosted Blawg Review on the International Day of the Disappeared. In her latest post, Legalize it?, Mirriam says, "while the argument for or against legalizing drugs is one that we will continue to have for years to come, to say that ending the war on drugs would solve all of black America's problems is just as disingenuous as saying that there is no racism in America."

Ron Coleman at Likelihood of Confusion celebrated Rosh Hashanah, the Day of Judgment for all of humanity—even lawyers. Even judges. Even blawgers! This week, Ron posted the amicus brief prepared on behalf of the Media Bloggers Association in the matter of the Righthaven lawsuits.

Keith Lee at An Associate's Mind drew our attention to World Suicide Prevention Day with a thought-provoking, though dark and depressing, Blawg Review. Keith hasn't blogged or tweeted in months, so we're worried about him.

Mark Bennett on Defending People hosted Blawg Review to remind us about Constitution Day, or, as he calls it, the thinking person’s Patriot Day.

Ed @ Blawg Review hosted on World Tourism Day, in the middle of his "all-you-can-jet" adventure, to raise awareness on the role of tourism within the international community and to demonstrate how it affects social, cultural, political and economic values worldwide. This week: Had a great tweetup with @SantiagoFLampon in Old San Juan, PR, after visiting his blog Vieques and the Law Can't wait to visit his island.

In recognition of the 40th anniversary of her October 4, 1970 death, this edition of Blawg Review on Houston-based Mark Bennett's Blog was dedicated to Texas*-born blues wailer Janis Joplin. This week, Bennett's wailing about TSA Grooming.

The theme of this Blawg Review on Freedom to Differ was a little more personal for host Peter Black and didn't fall into his usual areas of teaching, writing or blogging. Lately, since Pete's had the freedom to dither, he's been wondering if this group of Aussies singing the Facebook song is totally fucking amazing, or just gay?

Drawing attention to the National Day on Writing, we called upon a pseudonymous host for Blawg Review, Piercie Shafton, not that Piercie Shafton, “the meddling tool of wise plotters–a hair-brained trafficker in treason–a champion of the Pope, employed as a forlorn hope by those more politic heads, who have more will to work mischief, than valour to encounter danger.” Piercie Shafton had to create a Gmail account to post on ATL, so he's very interested in Google's privacy policies and finds it good to know that Google gives you the freedom to be who you want to be...

Keith Lee at An Associate's Mind hosted Blawg Review a second time in as many months because he was keen to express his thoughts on National Freedom of Speech Week. We wonder, "Why has his voice not been heard in so many months?"

Houston's Paul Kennedy at The Defense Rests hosted Blawg Review to celebrate the triple witching hour of All Saint's Day, All Soul's Day and the Day of the Dead, or, more appropriately, El Dia de los Muertos. This week, he's remembering the Alamo.

Patent Baristas hosted Blawg Review on November 9, the birthday of inventor and Hollywood actress Hedy Lamarr. This week, Stephen Albainy-Jenei says it's crunch time for the Patent Reform Act.

Pink Tape hosted Blawg Review, taking as her theme for the week “the trouble people get into for saying stuff”. Need we say more? This week, familoo received a gift from the MOJ that, shall we dare say, set her off.

Dave Gulbransen stepped into the breach and hosted "sua sponte" a last minute Thanksgiving edition of Blawg Review. Thanks, Dave!

Thanks to all the bloggers who have collaborated over the years to make Blawg Review one of the very best blog carnivals of any genre. In review, then, here's the complete list of those who took up the challenge of hosting Blawg Review in 2010.

We're gonna need your help to choose which of those presentations will be named Blawg Review of the Year 2010. All this week, we'll be looking for feedback. By all means, blog about it, tweet about it, or send private emails to telling the editor who you think is most deserving of this honor. All such emails will be held in strictest confidence, if you like.

Blawg Review of the Year 2010 will be announced next Saturday, March 5th, at 7:00 pm Pacific time, live from Harry's Bar in San Francisco, where the Editor of Blawg Review and everyone who wants to attend can join us for a law blogger meetup. We will live-tweet the event, of course, and post the name of the Blawg Review of the Year 2010 as a final update to this post, as soon as it's announced.

If you're thinking, "This is Blawg Review of the Year!!!" you'd be right, and if you clicked on the banner graphic below, you'd know which blawger earned this honor for 2010.

Finally, if I may quote Keith Lee from his latest Blawg Review, "I’d like to take a moment to encourage readers to offer to host Blawg Review. It’s a challenging task but by participating you’re contributing to a pillar of the blawgosphere. It’s a great resource and a worthwhile endeavor. Step up to the plate, and thanks for reading."

Blawg Review has information about next week's host, and instructions how to get your blawg posts reviewed in upcoming issues.