Jerry Lawson

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The estimable Mel Scott (who runs a great podcast) asks an interesting question: What’s the most important thing a lawyer should know when starting a new job? My tip? Don’t spend all your time sucking up to supervisors & the highest people on your entity’s organization charts. Many times the most valuable people to know are on a lower level: When I was a teacher before becoming a lawyer, I always made it a…
Unsurprisingly, Conrad Saam, always the curmudgeon, reports that he was the sole contrarian in a recent panel on social media marketing for lawyers. Not drinking the Kool-Aid, right, Conrad? While every law firm should have a business-card type presence on all major social media forums, social media is generally not a promising direct-to-consumer marketing channel for lawyers. Social media marketing can be good for lawyers, but only a few stand to gain major…
Apple has released security updates for a serious security issue. Hackers are actively exploiting a newly discovered vulnerability in iOS/iPadOS 14 and macOS Big Sur. Each should be upgraded immediately to the latest version: iPhones: iOS 14.7.1 or higher. iPadOS: 14.7.1 or higher. MacOS: macOS 11.5.1 or newer. Lifehacker.com has background information and easy updating instructions. Let’s be careful out there.  …
Immigration lawyer innovator/disruptor Roman Zelichenko shared an instructive story via LinkedIn about a real estate lawyer who failed to meet his expectations. When Zelichenko complained about the low quality of service the lawyer replied: I don’t know what you mean by “service provider.” I’m a lawyer. I do my job, you get your house, you pay me, and we part ways. Believe me, I won’t lose any sleep over this. Dinosaur? Maybe. One thing is certain:…
Posted in our “Off the Clock” category: Everybody’s got heroes, somebody who taught him things and helped them develop as a person. One of my biggest heroes was Gene Siler, a Navy veteran and conservative Republican. Richard Nixon appointed him as U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Kentucky. Gerald Ford made him a District Court Judge and George H. Bush later selected him for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.…
Advocating for change can be difficult. My 1995 experience at the National Archives and Records Administration illustrates a few lessons: Innovation In A Change-Resistant Organization: A Story In 1995 few federal agencies had robust Internet presences. Most had none at all. As a lawyer with the National Archives and Records Administration my duties did not include technical matters. Despite this in my own personal life I had some ideas of the exciting things that were…
Part I: Who Is Carole Levitt? Jerry Lawson: I’m pleased to talk today with Carole Levitt, one of the country’s premier experts on Internet research, both legal and investigative. Her most recent book, coauthored with Judy Davis, is the second edition of her treatise Internet Legal Research on a Budget. Thanks for taking the time to talk with me. Carole Levitt: Glad to be here. [JL]: How did you begin working with the…
“A Short & Happy Guide to Advanced Legal Research” (West Academic Publishing, 2020) by Ann Walsh Long Available from Amazon in paperback or Kindle versions, as well as directly from the publisher (paperback and ebook). Ann Walsh Long has a message for lawyers: Over the last five years, legal artificial intelligence tools such as data analytics and natural language processing have moved from science fiction to practical tools. Versions of these powerful tools…
John Simek provided many good tips during his recent presentation at VSB Techshow (archived at Virginia State Bar CLE site, for those who did not catch live version) I was particularly pleased that he recommended Bruce Schneier as a top source of IT security advice. Schneier’s  blog is a consistent sources of valuable insights not readily available elsewhere. Schneier’s Secrets and Lies: Digital Security in a Networked World was published years ago it remains…