65 episodes

Welcome to The Geek In Review, where podcast hosts, Marlene Gebauer and Greg Lambert discuss current events in legal information.

The Geek In Review Greg Lambert & Marlene Gebauer

    • Business

Welcome to The Geek In Review, where podcast hosts, Marlene Gebauer and Greg Lambert discuss current events in legal information.

    Matt Sunbulli on Fishbowl's Entry into the Legal Industry Social Media Space

    Matt Sunbulli on Fishbowl's Entry into the Legal Industry Social Media Space

    The social media platform Fishbowl is designed to create an anonymous but verified space for professionals to socialize with others in the same profession. CEO and co-founder Matt Sunbulli joins us this week to talk about FIshbowl's entry into the legal industry social media space. It's been about eight weeks, but there is already a large number of attorneys and other legal professionals using the platform to discuss issues ranging from what's an appropriate salary range, to advice on lateral moves, to is it okay to vape in the workplace. The answer to that last one is a solid, NO!

    Fishbowl creates an optional identification for its users which range from anonymized job title (Attorney, Partner, etc.), to "works at X law firm," to full identification, based on the user's needs on individual interactions. Because users have to sign up with their real names and be verified by your work email and LinkedIn profile,  there's a self-policing aspect to the platform. This seems to have tamped down the Troll factor you find on other platforms like Reddit. Because it allows for anonymity in the posts, users are more comfortable about asking questions to peers or others in more senior roles. It's a very interesting concept of professional anonymity that brings us some very interesting conversations that we just don't find on other professional networks like LinkedIn. 

    Information Inspirations

    The American Association of Law Libraries has allowed for full Open Access to the Law Library Journal and Spectrum magazine. The Open Access movement in professional journals and publications is something that has been occurring in academic circles, and once again, AALL is leading the way for other professional organizations to promote professional writing and promotion for its members.

    Our Ep. 39 guest Hannah Bloch-Wehba is back with a great upcoming law review article on the problems surrounding the idea of automating social media platform's ability to remove questionable content. While it may sound good on paper, in practice there are many unintended consequences that have to be discussed and exposed.

    The National Archives was caught censoring a photo on its Women's Sufferage Movement display. We cannot stress enough how wrong this was. While the National Archives admitted their mistake and is working to replace the image with an unedited one, it is the responsibility of librarians and archivists to not bow to demands or desires to whitewash history. 

    Two brothers worked for years to create an alphabet and working writing system to their native Fulfulde language. Through their work and collaboration with UNICODE's Michael Everson, and Microsoft, their vision of creating a way for the millions of native speakers to have their language on a computer system became a reality. 

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    Please take the time to rate and review us on Apple Podcast. Contact us anytime by tweeting us at @gebauerm or @glambert. Or, you can call The Geek in Review hotline at 713-487-7270 and leave us a message. You can email us at geekinreviewpodcast@gmail.com. As always, the great music you hear on the podcast is from Jerry David DeCicca.

    • 46 min
    The Leadership Journey with Laura Toledo and Kevin Iredell

    The Leadership Journey with Laura Toledo and Kevin Iredell

    While we may have had a tough time pronouncing things correctly, this week's guests said all the right things when it comes to being a leader within their organizations. Laura Toledo, Communications and Marketing Manager at Nilan Johnson Lewis PA in Minneapolis, and Kevin Iredell, Chief Marketing Officer at Lowenstein Sandler LLP in New York, discuss their year-long experience in the SmithBucklin Leadership Institute. Both are leaders within the Legal Marketing Association, which sponsored their attendance at the institute. While people in leadership positions may feel that they need to have all the answers, Toledo says that she learned it is okay to be patient and learn more about the situation before just going with her gut reaction. Iredell stressed that the key to being a great leader is making sure that you've given those who report to you all the tools and support they need in order to succeed. The Institute brings together leaders from different industries and helped both of our guests understand that the legal industry does not have a monopoly on stressful situations and the need for solid leadership. 

    Information Inspirations
    Greg points to a recent TED talk article from Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic called “Why do so many incompetent men become leaders? And what can we do about it?” The article and video are about as harsh as the title implies. While Chamorrow-Premuzic takes liberties at the expense of men, pointing out that the traits of bad leaders skew toward men, the traits of a good leader do not have a gender bias. We have a tendency to value confidence over competence, narcissism over humility, and the belief that leaders can do anything rather than know their limitations. This inspiration dovetails nicely with our guests today.

    Marlene's inspiration came from Jean O'Grady's reporting on the Law Street Media's relaunch of its legal news platform, beginning with high tech and intellectual property news. For those of us wanting a little more competition with Law360 and other legal new providers, this offering from Fastcase may be exactly what we've been looking for.

    Greg's final inspiration is more of a request for certain media outlets. In the past month, there have been articles where the images placed on the article do not fit the content of the article. While the intent of the images may have been innocent or just unaware, the results are misogynistic and racist. Imaging matters, especially in an age where many people do little more than skim the titles and images of an article. Hopefully, this will inspire the publisher to make a more concerted effort to use more appropriate imagery for their articles.

    Marlene's discusses Cambridge Analytica whistleblower, Brittany Kaiser, who sat down with Kai Ryssdal and Molly Wood on Make Me Smart, and discusses how we may be in a worse place than we were in 2016. (Cue the dark place music.)

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    Please take the time to rate and review us on Apple Podcast. As always, the great music you hear on the podcast is from Jerry David DeCicca.

    • 36 min
    Ellyssa Valenti Kroski on Law Librarians in the Age of AI, and a Hamilton Escape Room

    Ellyssa Valenti Kroski on Law Librarians in the Age of AI, and a Hamilton Escape Room

    With the new decade comes a new tagline for The Geek in Review introduction. Let us know what you think of the change.

    Ellyssa Valenti Kroski is the Director of Information Technology/Director of Marketing at New York Law Institute and is the editor of the new book, Law Librarianship in the Age of AI. Whenever there is a monumental shift in technology and processes, there will be winners and there will be those who are left behind. The authors of this compilation give the readers a path to better understanding what Artificial Intelligence is, and what it isn't. Ranging from the basic understanding of AI concepts to listing specific tools occupying the AI space within the legal industry, to the benefits, risks, and ethical issues surrounding the tools, this book covers a lot of ground. It's definitely worth checking out.

    In addition to the book, Ellyssa discusses her other books and projects, including makerspaces and using escape room activities for professional development and end-user training. She will be running an escape room event at the  Ark Group’s 14th annual Law Firm Library, Research & Information Services in New York, NY, March 12-13, 2020. The escape room is called Escape the Library: The Search for Alexander Hamilton and the Missing Librarian: A Time Travel Adventure. Apparently, Alexander Hamilton did not die from his duel with Aaron Burr but is actually a time-traveler. Whether true or not,  it sounds like a lot of fun. Attendees can get a 20% discount on the conference by entering the code "ESCAPE" when registering.

    Information Inspirations

    We've covered how BigLaw is adopting the Mansfield Rule to increase diversity within the ranks and is basing that rule upon the National Football League's Rooney Rule. Hopefully, BigLaw does better than the NFL has. When the Rooney Rule was adopted in 2003, there were three black NFL head coaches. At one point, that improved to eight. However, habits persist and after nearly seventeen years in, the NFL coaching ranks are back to exactly where we started. Three. If BigLaw is to do better, it must be vigilant, and firms not complying should be called out. 

    Marlene's inspiration discusses what happens when your career so encompasses your life, that you can't separate yourself from your job. In a recent  Harvard Business Review article, author Janna Koretz discusses the effects of what psychologists call "enmeshment" where professionals are so intertwined with their career identity, that they lose their self-identity. She describes ways to understand if your identity has become enmeshed with your career, and methods to break free of that enmeshment. The example she uses is a partner at a large firm, and we all probably know that this type of career/personal identity enmeshment is very prominent within the legal industry. 

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    Please take the time to rate and review us on Apple Podcast. Contact us anytime by tweeting us at @gebauerm or @glambert. Or, you can call The Geek in Review hotline at 713-487-7270 and leave us a message. You can email us at geekinreviewpodcast@gmail.com. As always, the great music you hear on the podcast is from Jerry David DeCicca. 

    • 28 min
    Professor Ben Barton on Fixing Law Schools

    Professor Ben Barton on Fixing Law Schools

    The past ten years have been what University of Tennessee Law Professor Ben Barton calls "the lost decade" for law schools. In his new book, Fixing Law Schools: From Collapse to the Trump Bump and Beyond, Professor Barton walks us through the issues he sees with the current structure of legal education in the United States, and ways to actually fix it. The book focuses on three areas that need correction:


    The cost of legal education is simply too high, and cannot be maintained.
    Technology has to be leveraged within the educational curriculum to help future practicing attorneys to do more work, charge less, and make more money in the end.
    Regulations have to be focused on the outputs of legal education, and be given teeth so that students are more likely to succeed.

    While the book title is about the lost decade of the 2010s, the root of the problem goes back well over a hundred years. Professor Barton talks with us about where we've been, where we are, and where we need to go so that we really are Fixing Law Schools.

    Information Inspirations

    We keep it short and sweet this week (mostly because neither of us has finished our holiday shopping.)

    Wireframes are becoming less relevant — and that’s a good thing - In his Medium article, Sean Dexter argues that using wireframes is basically old school now, especially given the rise of Agile product development, and Lean UX processes. Today's visualizations require more on-the-fly modifications which standard wireframes just don't allow. Newer products like Think Sketch, Adobe XD, or Figma are the modern tools you might want to check out.

    25+ Legal Tech and Business of Law Predictions for 2020 - Aderant released its third annual predictions and the common theme seems to be centered around the idea that we need less talk about innovation and more actual implementation of innovative ideas and products. Stop with the PR and BS, and get something done. Greg wanted to add one other idea to the 2020 prediction and declare that collaborative software products like Microsoft Teams or the legal industry-focused product Workstorm are going to become must-have products in the team environments in which most of us work.

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    Our holiday gift wish is that you take the time to rate and review us on Apple Podcast. Be generous!!

    Contact us anytime by tweeting us at @gebauerm or @glambert. Or, you can call The Geek in Review hotline at 713-487-7270 and leave us a message. You can email us at geekinreviewpodcast@gmail.com. As always, the great music you hear on the podcast is from Jerry David DeCicca.

    • 48 min
    Deep Dive on State Copyright Issues with Kyle Courtney and Ed Walters

    Deep Dive on State Copyright Issues with Kyle Courtney and Ed Walters

    The US Supreme Court heard oral arguments on Georgia v. Public.Resource.Org and we take a deep dive into the issues in this matter. Kyle Courtney, Copyright Advisor at Harvard University, and Ed Walters, CEO of Fastcase have strong opinions in this matter, and were both involved in submitting Amicus Briefs on behalf of Public.Resources.Org. Join us for this engaging and informative conversation as we look at what the arguments are from both sides, and how Justices' questions may shape the outcome of this case. 

    For more information on this case, check out the oral argument transcript [PDF], and a primer with supportive materials from Ed Waters' on Medium.

    We also catch up with Emily Feltren from the American Association of Law Libraries to hear what else has been going on in Washington, DC in regards to legal information (we skip the impeachment stuff.) Believe it or not, there are things actually getting done in DC despite all the obvious gridlock.

    Information Inspirations

    Our very own Toby Brown is the inaugural guest on the new podcast, Pricing Matters. Toby is well known for his contribution to the establishing of pricing professionals within large law firms, and he gives us a peak behind the curtain of what he has accomplished over the past decade and a half. He even gives us a parallel story of how pricing issues resemble actions taken by HGTV's Chip and Joanna Gaines. Check it out!

    KM Is Dead... Long Live KM. It turns out that if you want to be innovative in law firms, look no further than what your Knowledge Management team has been working on for some time now. There's been a big boost lately in how KM is helping innovative law firms move forward with a 360 degree view of their knowledge, and better understanding their clients.

    Sometimes we inspire ourselves. Greg recently read about an Australian law firm going through an identity crisis on whether it should see itself as a law firm, or as a professional services consultant on legal issues. The story line fits almost any company, industry, or organization where there is a paradigm shift in what they do. Check out his LinkedIn article where he reworks the story to fit nearly anyone facing change.

    Is Data Science dying? Marlene says no. However, firms trying to implement data science techniques are finding that dirty data and antiquated ideas are limiting its results and driving data scientists away from working for them. 

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    Contact us anytime by tweeting us at @gebauerm or @glambert. Or, you can call The Geek in Review hotline at 713-487-7270 and leave us a message. You can email us at geekinreviewpodcast@gmail.com. As always, the great music you hear on the podcast is from Jerry David DeCicca.

     

    • 57 min
    The AALL Animal Law Caucus: Acknowledging and Researching Animal Rights in a People-Centric World

    The AALL Animal Law Caucus: Acknowledging and Researching Animal Rights in a People-Centric World

    We all love our pets and think of them as part of our families. Even though we might love them as much (or more) than we love people, the legal system does not allow them the same protection. That doesn't mean that there are no rights for animals, in fact, there are many specific laws designated to protect them. In this episode of The Geek in Review, we bring on four experts in researching Animal Laws, not just in the US, but worldwide. We talk with the following members of the American Association of Law Libraries' Animal Law Caucus:

    Alex Zhang - Law Library Director and Professor of Practice at Washington and Lee University School of Law
    Stacey Gordon Sterling -Law Library Director and Professor of law - Alexander Blewett III School of Law at the University of Montana
    Katie Ott - Reference Librarian - Robert Crown Law Library at Stanford University
    Sarah Slinger - Reference Librarian and Lecturer at Law - University of Miami Law Library

    Whether it is legal issues ranging from which "parent" gets the pet in a divorce, or how an orangutan is granted "personhood" in Argentina, to animal testing on cute beagles (yes... that's still going on in the US), our experts from the Animal Law Caucus cover these issues and more. 

    Information Inspirations

    There is a lot of tech opportunities in America, but one of the unrealized places are on Native American Reservations. The Make Me Smart podcast talks with a Native Financial Officer about the upcoming Wiring the Rez conference.

    One Texas Federal Judge asks if you submit a brief more than 10 pages long, that you make a recording so he can listen to it, rather than read it. Sounds like an opportunity for some talented legal podcasters with better voices than Greg.

    Despite some of the best efforts to make things better, even allies can come up short when it comes to bias in the workplace. One leader in the Social Justice non-profit area shares her story, and it mirrors some of the same situations we see in the legal industry.

    To understand Algorithmic Bias, you must first understand the different types of discrimination, and how they apply to the bias. It's very complicated, but here's a primer to get your started.

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    Contact us anytime by tweeting us at @gebauerm or @glambert. Or, you can call The Geek in Review hotline at 713-487-7270 and leave us a message. You can email us at geekinreviewpodcast@gmail.com. As always, the great music you hear on the podcast is from Jerry David DeCicca.

    • 44 min

Customer Reviews

gaillardia ,

Thought provoking

This entertaining and warmly hosted podcast is geared towards law librarians and the legal profession, but it has something for everyone interested in technology, and increasing leadership and research skills. I’m an educator and always find items of value in each episode.

crawmacdad ,

Great show!

Thoughtful, interesting, and entertaining podcast about the latest trends in tech in the legal industry. I really enjoy it.

VAgnihotri ,

Ask these two to make Law and KM sound cool

Greg and Marlene bring their knowledge, wit and charm to make law and KM sound cool. Their friendly banter reminds me of the greatest NPR radio show ever: Car Talk. They weave their love of music into interviews on legal ops, information management, legal tech and so much more! They have a steady stream of shows, a testament to their established standing in the legal KM community. One of my favorite podcasts!!

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