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September 2, 2008

Law school faculty blogs: Louisville's approach

I heartily concur in Anupam Chander's sentiment that a law school faculty blog represents "a cheap, easy and effective tool to communicate ideas on a current basis to the public." I also welcome the Marquette University Law School Faculty Blog as the newest variation on this very effective form of law school innovation.

Mapping the LandscapeAt the University of Louisville, we've hosted a faculty-wide blog since fall 2007. Louisville's faculty-wide blog, accessible at http://www.law.louisville.edu/blog, aggregates smaller, independent blogs written by individual faculty members. A very good example is Tony Arnold's blog, Mapping the Landscape: Resources on Land Use & the Environment.

Interested readers therefore have two ways of following Tony's work. They may read his observations on land use and environmental law by reading Mapping the Landscape: Resources on Land Use & the Environment, or better yet, subscribing to its RSS feed. Other readers follow Louisville's consolidated faculty blog in its entirety, which likewise has an RSS feed of its own.

For my part, I maintain an official dean's blog called The Cardinal Lawyer. Together, my colleagues' individual blogs, the consolidated University of Louisville Law Faculty Blog, and The Cardinal Lawyer have drawn positive attention from our students, from our alumni, from the broader practicing bar, and from legal academia at large.

Jim Chen

Cardinal Lawyer

September 2, 2008 in Blogging by lawyers and law professors | Permalink


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Using the faculty blog to aggregate individual faculty blogs is quite clever. Of course, if a faculty member does not want to carry her own blog, she could contribute directly to the general faculty blog as well.

This poses a difficulty, however, for the Law Professor Blogs Network--because the group nature of the various blogs on the system does not make it easy for the blog to automatically generate a second entry on a parallel blog only for those professors who belong to a particular school, for example.

Posted by: Anupam Chander | Sep 2, 2008 10:27:47 PM

Though Louisville doesn't implement tags for individual blog posts -- we're using Drupal, an open-source content management system, as opposed to a fancier blogging platform such as the Law Professor Blogs Network's Typepad -- you can use the tagging/labeling function in Typepad to create a school-by-school sorting mechanism. Or any other set of categories. Of course, this requires getting individual participants in a group blog to follow a uniform tagging protocol. Good luck!

One clarification: Louisville's system guarantees that any faculty member who contributes even one post to the consolidated blog is generating her or his own personal blog. If you look on our faculty home pages, you'll see that everyone has a blog. Or at least the potential for one.

Posted by: Jim Chen | Sep 3, 2008 9:10:10 AM

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