Justia: The Year in Review


2010 is almost gone–it’s been a very eventful year here at Justia. Indulge us while we review this year’s contributions to legal information on the internet. And, we are getting plans ready for 2011–if you have any ideas about things you’d like to see at Justia.com, please let us know in the comments!

Free Law!!

First of all– we have to talk about Law.gov. This movement really took off in 2010, and we are very proud to have been a part of the effort. There have been meetings and conferences across the United States, from which a Principles and Declaration was drafted. Google granted Public.Resource.Org $2M in furtherance of the law.gov effort, and most recently, the Report of Current Opinions was announced. RECOP will distribute current caselaw from the 50 states and the federal courts freely on the internet.

This is an amazing and historic achievement–we are solidly on the road to dismantling the paywall for legal information in this country. There is much more to do, but I think it’s important to recognize the tremendous effort that co-convenors and volunteers put into this project, and showcase the success that they have achieved thus far.

New Properties

We launched several new sites this year that we’re very proud of!

  • The Virtual Chase, a site previously run by law librarian Genie Tyburski, was relaunched by Justia this year. TVC is a great source for legal research, appropriate for consumers just learning a new topic, as well as for attorneys and librarians performing sophisticated research. We are proud to carry on Genie’s legacy, and to help expand access to research materials on the internet.
  • Justia Mexico:  a portal for legal information in Mexico–the first of its kind! Thanks to our amazing team in Mexico, our site is able to provide pinpoint access to Mexican court decisions, codes, laws, and regulations for Mexico and all of its states.
  • Justia Legal Answers:  a question and answer portal for consumers. Answers is really taking off–with consumers from across the country posting their legal questions and getting helpful and thoughtful answers from local attorneys.
  • SCOCAL: a joint effort with Robert Crown Law Library at Stanford and Fastcase. This is an amazing resource where you can find California Supreme Court opinions, indexed and annotated by law students at SLS. This is the first step in building a free, distributed database of intelligently annotated caselaw.

Social Media

Like most web companies, we are out of the kiddie pool and in the deep end with social media this year.

  • We are loving Facebook and its ability to connect us with users all over the US and share late breaking legal news and commentary. We’ve got some great discussion on our page — everything from the Health Care plan to copyright issues to the death penalty. It’s been fascinating to watch the conversation unfold.
  • Twitter started out as a time waster in the office (actually, I think that’s still in my bio), but quickly grew into its own social media strategy. We’re very active now, building communities through Legal Birds, sharing news, opinions, and gossip.
  • We’ve also made a strong effort to blog regularly here, and its been very rewarding. I think I speak for all of the bloggers at Justia when I say that we feel much more plugged in, both to legal news and to our fellow lawyers, law librarians, and free law geeks.

Happy New Year, and as we say Onward! We wish you lots of happiness, prosperity, and good tidings for 2011.