I've been toying for the last few days with the idea of a radical shift for this weblog. It would mean far, far more posting, but a change in the contents of those posts, and I'm interested to see what people think.

You see, I've been falling way behind in taking notes on cases ("briefing" cases as we say for some reason). A large part of the reason for this is that I spend a lot of time writing posts for this blog, checking others weblogs, etc. At the same time, I noticed yesterday that the cases I feel most confident in my knowledge of are the cases that I've posted about on here. So the thought occurs: why not do my note-taking on my weblog? I can make a post about every case I read, and thereby force myself to put the mental energy into thinking hard about the case while simultaneously giving me a written record of my thoughts.

There are a couple of problems with this. First, I may be putting the cart before the horse with respect to previously posted cases. That is, there's a strong change that I posted about them because they interested me, and therefore I thought about them and now understand them, rather than that I understand them now because I posted about them. Still, it's unlikely, in this regard, that posting will be any less effective than any other form of notetaking.

The much larger concern is for you, the audience. I worry that if I start case blogging I'll be breaking the first rule of weblogging, to always write for an audience (at least, for an audience larger than yourself). While theoretically these cases are all chosen for inclusion in their respective casebooks because they elaborate a point of law, or because, when viewed next to another case, they illuminate an intriguing contradiction, I know that there's a massive, massive difference in the level of interest to the outsider between "Cases about how much doctors must compensate accidental mothers for botched sterilizations" and "Cases about whether or not a judge levied an improperly high sanction against a company for failure to send the appropriate attorney to a pre-trial conference." Of course, handily there's a pretty high correlation between "Cases which are arm-clawingly boring" and "Cases we read for Civil Procedure," so in that sense I may be able to warn you off.

The related problem is that I read a lot of cases, which means a lot of posting. Now, time-wise this shouldn't be a problem; I ought to be taking notes anyway and, again, taking notes. if done right, should take no less time than posting about these cases. I have three classes, and each assigns 2-3 cases per night. So that means between 6 and 9 posts per day, all about cases. I'll try to keep up the same level of non-law posts, about a post or two per day, but they're guaranteed to be swamped by case posts.

Now, I'll still be posting for an audience; this isn't just going to be a notebook that happens to be on-line. I'll try to draw out whatever point of law caused the editor to put the case into the casebook and try to make it interesting, and leave the case open for discussion in comments. I'm not going to expect comments on all cases, or any for that matter, but it would probably help me understand the cases better if there were occasional discussions on them. I'm also going to clearly demarcate the case posts from the regular posts, both in the categories and in the post titles, so as to make it much easier to get to the non-law posts.

Anyhow, those are my thoughts. I'm thinking of trying it over the next week, then seeing where I am on Friday. Any thoughts or feelings on this?

February 2012
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
      1 2 3 4
5 6 7 8 9 10 11
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
26 27 28 29      

Contact Zach


Webcomics of Which I am a Fan

Sites I Read Daily: Politics

Sites I Read Daily: Video Gaming

Sites I Read Daily: General Miscellany

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Zach published on October 16, 2005 1:04 PM.

Well Doge my cats was the previous entry in this blog.

Sins of History is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

Powered by Movable Type 5.04