Legal As She Is Spoke (LASIS) is an online project of the Program in Law and Journalism at New York Law School. The blog reports on the state of legal journalism and encourages conversation about the accuracy and felicity of reporting on the law. The blog’s Twitter account is @LASIS_Blog, which currently has 1,714 tweets and 346 followers.
Information on the LASIS blog is logically and coherently presented. Upon linking to it, you will see five sections in the top right corner: News, Opinion, The Arts, Potpourri, and RSS feeds. If you scroll down, you will see an additional section called The Guilty Prosecutor; to improve upon the blog’s navigation, the LASIS creators might consider, in a later version, locating all of these sections in one place. Updates to the blog are received via social media (i.e. Facebook and Twitter) and RSS feeds.
Recent Articles, Archives & Tags
The articles featured on the first page of the blog are its most recent articles. Because not all readers will recognize this, the LASIS creators might further improve the navigability of their blog by including a “Latest Articles” section. Older posts are located on the right side of the blog under “The Guilty Prosecutor” and above the “Pages” sections. These posts are organized by month (January to December) and year (2009 to 2013). One drawback should be noted: a reader must browse articles by month, rather than by year, which would have been the faster way.
In each article, LASIS uses meta tags at the bottom of its posts to organize and categorize the content. Clicking on these hyperlinked tags helps the reader search and view content sharing the same meta tag.
Content and Context
The postings of LASIS students provide context for the blog’s discussions. For example, a discussion about the movie Before Midnight includes a student blogger’s thoughts on legal issues related to the child custody disputes from the movie. The student bloggers also provide hyperlinks to outside resources, such as those from the Before Midnight article which include hyperlinks to precedent-setting child custody cases like Friedrich v. Friedrich, 78 F.3d 1050 (6th Circuit 1996).
Blog postings appear frequently. For example, LASIS posted ten articles between October 1 and October 19, 2013. The “interesting” articles tend to receive the most comments from the blog’s readers. For instance, an article about a famous R&B producer-musician who reneged on a $1,000,000 reward to the person who recovered his invaluable hard drive received 18 comments [Ryan Morrison, Quite Possible, A Bad Rap, Legal As She Is Spoke (February 11, 2013).]
LASIS uses simple graphics to present and provide an understanding of the blog’s scope and usefulness. For example, a simple graphic accompanies each posting. Yet, this simple visual design manages to engage the reader. Overall, it is clear why Legal As She Is Spoke received one of the highest votes on the Blawg 100. Its organization, archives, recent articles, tags, content and context, and graphic/visual design are presented to the blog readers in a simple, clear and useful manner.
~ Selviana Bates, L’16 ~