About TLB

  • Philip Jessup proposed the idea of a transnational law course. His vision of the subject was broad, including public and private international law; state and non-state actors; business, administrative, and political affairs; as well as negotiation and litigation. Inspired by his idea, TLB is only constrained by its pursuit to address all law transcending national frontiers.

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October 15, 2006


John Roach

The function of a law student's blog should be making legal issues of current interest comprehensible to non-law students and non-lawyers. As people fresh from the real world, law students can appreciate how scary legal issues, such as the legality of the Guantanamo detention centers, can be to tackle from a layman's perspective.

Perhaps it would be useful for schools to give academic credit for the type of specialized blog that Best suggests: "Best posited that a law student could devote an entire blog to documenting the legal repercussions of the [Hudson] decision."

However, one has to question the extent to which legal professions can rely, or should rely, on the blog of a law student. One potential danger of such a reliance would be the inability of the law student to confront and meaningfully advance the large amount of legal scholarship that has already been written on an issue confronted in a newly decided opinion. We have to remember, the law student has a busy schedule and is a novice to the law.

Travis Hodgkins

Thanks for letting the cat out of the bag, John!

I absolutely agree that a function of a legal blog is to make legal issues easier to comprehend for lawyers and non-lawyers. Although a law student has a busy schedule, law students generally travel in packs, which means they can start a blog with their friends (ahem, like TLB). And we shouldn't neglect the fact that most people with blogs also have a very busy schedule but they manage to make meaningful contributions to the blogosphere. A legal blog written by law students brings at least a few things to the blogosphere:

(1) Law students will probably revisit issues that law veterans haven't addressed for some time or take for granted, and it will give everyone an opportunity to re-analyze the subject. This is also an opportunity for non-lawyers and other law students to learn as the law student blogger learns the issues.

(2) It sometimes happens that a law student's fresh perspective on an issue illuminates an aspect of the argument that hadn't been brought to light before. It's even possible that a law student will have a completely new and original idea.

(3) Everyone brings their unique life experience and erudition to the blogosphere and, thus, they cast their opinions in their own unique way that will hopefully appeal to an audience-- maybe even a new audience that other blogs haven't reached.

These are just a few that I can list off the top off my head, but I invite other readers to add their comments. I have no doubt that law students contribute to legal scholarship in the blogosphere. For more of my ramblings on the subject, please visit my previous post entitled, "The Law Student's Role in Cyber-Scholarship" and the link is here.

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