Thursday, February 28, 2008

JD Supra Launches

JD Supra launched as a place that "offers free access to a constantly expanding database of legal documents (filings, decisions, forms, articles) from the people whose work gives meaning to the law."

I contributed an article a few weeks ago and earned "Founding Contributor" status as part of my profile. Wearing my real estate lawyer hat, I published my article on Financing Your Acquisition and Construction.

There is a fair amount of blogging about JD Supra. Connie Crosby wrote about it on her blog and on Slaw. Lawyer KM put up a post. Here are some others blog posts.

I found the site was well put together and functions well. It was easy for me to add my article. I plan to contribute a few more articles and other content.

But with any site like this I always ask "What's In It For Me?" I need a reason to come back to the site and I need a reason to contribute information to the site.

Steve Matthews in his comment to LawyerKM's post on JD Supra, points to as an example of a commercial real estate group that posted a great deal of information on a publicly available site. Of course the difference there is that is an extension of that firm's brand. With JD Supra, I am competing with Morrison & Foerster's 256 documents and the Electronic Frontier Foundation's 665 documents.

The other comparison is to Legal OnRamp which is also trying to be the social network and document repository for lawyers. The difference with Legal OnRamp is that it was set up by in-house counsel to make resources available to them. There I know that clients and potential clients are there in the site. That is an incentive to add content and visit the site.

JD Supra also has a blog in conjunction with the site: JD Scoop.

Of course, JD Supra is free for the moment, so it does not cost anything to join and add content. If you are a lawyer, go ahead and join and add content. It will only cost you your time.

I am not sure what's in it for me. But it is interesting enough that I will continue to dabble.


  1. Doug, what's in it for you is a brand extension for your practice. When it comes to online marketing these days, it's all about putting together quality pieces of the puzzle that reflect who you are, and the expertise you can deliver. Not just the articles you've written, but public facing documents that reflect your expertise - your work product.

    As you pointed out in previous commentary of Facebook, giving potential clients a better understanding of who they are dealing with is the key.

    Also worth pointing out, all the documents in JD Supra are indexed by Google and associated with the lawyer's profile & contact information. When you share work product on any niche topic, you're again extending the breadth of your brand, and hitting the long tail.

    There are lots more benefits I can think of. I wouldn't have signed on to the project otherwise. :)

  2. Steve -

    Sounds good. I am all about extending my brand.

    The google indexing is a great point. I think that is something you need to highlight.


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