On Sunday, what I began calling “Law Dork, 2.0″ — my post-state employment iteration of this blog — reached six months. On Thursday, I will be beginning my second month at this new site, where I reverted to the simple, original name of “Law Dork.” In this 2009 blogging, I’ve had nearly 120,000 pageviews, written nearly 420 posts and enjoyed more than 1,500 comments here. At my lawdork.net home alone, I’ve had visitors from 49 of the 50 states (South Dakota, what’s up with that?) and from 55 countries.
I love that I can use this space to focus on bigger topics and more in-depth posts, while utilizing Twitter for, as Jay Rosen calls it, “mind-casting” — the simple, link-heavy or snarky thoughts that needn’t necessitate (or don’t justify) a blog post. I’m not an Andrew Sullivan-type “30 posts a day with two assistants” blogger, which is excellent but not me. I’m not Towleroad or Queerty, covering everything that happens in the gay world if only with a brief mention or some snark, respectively. For me, those can be found in my Twitter feed. My posts here are in-depth, well-researched and, I like to think, provide a unique addition to the discussion. If you agree and want to support my efforts, please consider sending a donation my way.
Seven years ago this month, I was learning about Columbus, exploring the city after having moved here to attend The Ohio State University’s Moritz College of Law. It’s a completely different virtual world than that I entered on June 4, 2003, when I opened my first blog post thus: “I have no idea how regularly this blog will be updated or — to be honest — what exactly this blog will evolve into, but I wanted to start one.” In the spirit of both a six-month and six-year review, I am looking at what this blog has “evolved into,” what I’m doing with it and considering — to quote Madonna in Evita — “where do we go from here.”
The changes in communication have to be at the fore of any review. They are, to me, almost as entrancing as the communication itself. In 2002, I was writing editorials at the Tribune Chronicle in Warren, Ohio, a disciplined process that led to newsprint copy — but also gave me my love of short-form writing. Two years later, I was entrenched in “law-student blogging,” a strange, free-form animal that I recommend so highly to any law student who wants to think in an engaging way outside her classes. Three years later, I was an observer, keeping to my old sites and watching the way blogging was evolving from a step once-removed. Two years later, here I am, engaged daily (hourly?) on Twitter and blogging in a very different role than that I performed while in law school — but loving it just the same.
But even as the medium of blogging and the technology that surrounds it changes, some of the reasons for my blogging, very much, stay the same. Five years ago, I was saying a “goodbye” of sorts to Steve, a friend who was a year ahead of me in law school:
Because Steve will shutting down zipsix.com shortly, and because the 1Ls don’t know him, I wanted to thank him for convincing me of the worth and fun of this whole blogging thing. Steve was blogging before blogging was cool and is a tremendous writer and a great friend.
Zipsix can now be found in Boston and on Twitter. He’s still a dear, if more distant, friend, and I still thank him, at least in my mind, every time I see his tweets appear.
For me, the spirit of blogging, something I hit on in Monday’s post about Tim Hortons, is that different voices can be heard — more directly, more loudly and more influentially — than in the past. The reason that I have fallen so hard and so fast for Twitter is the same. To an almost exponentially expanded degree, Twitter allows people who never had a direct connection to “opinion makers” and “celebrities” actually connect.
My interview with U.S. Rep. Jared Polis, a man I’d never met before the interview, was arranged by me asking him, on Twitter, if I could sit down with him for an interview while he was in town. He agreed, and a few days later, I spent a half-hour talking with Polis.
The primary focus at this site has become legal and policy analysis relating to LGBT issues. Legal analysis and coverage of Proposition 8 issues and other marriage equality — from Iowa to New Hampshire (or inequality) — and other LGBT developments has been almost nonstop over the past six months. This has been aided, at times, by interviews with some of those directly involved in the efforts. I’ve also provided in-depth legislative analysis of congressional action. Also, I’ve kept a watch on other developments in the Obama Administration and Congress — from the nomination of now-Justice Sonia Sotomayor to regulatory review.
I like the site, but, more importantly, I love writing and the sense that I am informing the public debate. I am in the process of exploring some ways to make this a more permanent endeavor, but if you like my coverage please consider a donation as a means of allowing me to continue this venture unimpeded. Thanks!
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