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ABA TECHSHOW 2019 – The Long Play

When most of us think about technology, we tend to fixate on our magical products today or dream about the wonders of tomorrow. So often we forget the development steps along the way or how we got things done in the past. Seriously… how did we ever find cheap five-star cuisine two blocks from our hotel without Yelp? Similarly, I bet most legal professionals don’t realize how long ABA TECHSHOW and its mission have been around or the significance of its longevity.

Thanks to our recent audio coverage and a related Above The Law article (hat-tip Bob Ambrogi), I learned that the first ABA TECHSHOW took place in 1986, the same year our culture met Oprah Winfrey, had “the need for speed”, and was graced with the birth of Lady Gaga. If you’re now starting to feel glacial, just think about your Apple IIGS computer or TI-60 calculator.

It’s from this vantage point and a recent interview with law students that I came to a new appreciation for a legal conference I’ve been covering for the last four years. Even during that short period of time, we’ve seen much proliferation of technology into the legal profession. Probably the best semi-recent example is the nearly universal acceptance of cloud-based technologies by attorneys. Today, the cloud is an obvious fit but when first introduced (like email), it was revolutionary and arguably controversial. As big as these doctrinal shifts were, they pale in comparison to what is coming next.

Unburying the lead and coming full circle, my conversation with four law students (Danielle Chirdon, Sara Agate, Ryan Dobbs, and Doug Lavey) may reveal the long play value of ABA TECHSHOW and other movements like it. It’s not the advent of new gadgets and software that will accelerate and modernize the practice of law; It will ultimately be about the base paradigm of practitioners. If lawyering culture, as a whole, stops seeing itself as the refuge for the tech-phobic, the industry will evolve to new heights. To that end, I believe the value of long-running programs like ABA TECHSHOW find their real mark. By perpetuating an ecosystem where new ideas and practical innovations can breath long enough to travel back with conference attendees, real modernization will eventually take root.

But so what? We’ve seen this for years. Why is this suddenly so important? Technology has already reached small firms, bar associations, and law schools but the industry still lags behind. Well, for the first time the legal profession has a new generation of self-identified digital natives that can no longer avoid technology. In fact, they embrace it in their everyday lives and expect everyone else to do the same. They are rapidly absorbing from the legal tech environment created by their predecessors.

With university mashups of science and law, tech competency at bar associations, and Global Legal Hackathons, there is no place for these new lawyers to go but forward. The big gift from long running movements like ABA TECHSHOW is that throughout the years, conference after conference, session after session, and meeting after meeting, their hard work spread and kept the ecosystem alive until its seedlings hit critical mass. With digital natives now entering their careers, this could finally be the moment when the legal profession sheds its reputation for antiquity and becomes a leader in innovative thinking.

The following comprises our audio coverage of ABA TECHSHOW 2019 and a list of those who participated. When it was all said and done, we recorded 19 episodes featuring 41 interviewees and hosts. Episodes are packed with tips, tricks, and ideas for running a better legal practice. Of special note was keynote presenter and 1871 CEO Betsy Ziegler discussing the direction of the legal profession as well as Judge Scott Schlegel, who is implementing innovative new methods to decrease recidivism with his Smart on Crime Initiative. In addition, Lawsites writer and podcaster Bob Ambrogi hosts the third annual Start-Up Pitch Competition (tune in below to hear which idea won). Other topics discussed include drones, automation, data preservation, privacy laws, firewalls, online marketing, gig economy, iOS, and Google Adwords. We hope you enjoy.


ABA TECHSHOW 2019: Keynote Address

1871 CEO Betsy Ziegler joins the ABA Journal’s Stephanie Francis Ward to discuss tech advancements that will impact the legal profession.


ABA TECHSHOW 2019: Tech Books For Lawyers

Tech authors Brett Burney, Daniel Siegel, Ben Schorr, David Ries, and Dennis Kennedy join ABA Publishing’s Ashley Alfirevic and Legal Talk Network’s Laurence Colletti for a conversation about their experiences developing and writing technology books for the legal profession. If you’re an aspiring author, you should definitely tune in.


ABA TECHSHOW 2019: Get Your Mobile Ninja On – Top iOS Tips, Apps, and Gear

Noted tech aficionados Jeff Richardson and Brett Burney stop by for a rapid-fire back and forth about their favorite apps, tips, and gear for iOS devices (iPhone and iPad).


ABA TECHSHOW 2019: Mastering Google Adwords

Google Adwords campaigns are not always straightforward. Marketer (and founder) of Attorney Sync Gyi Tsakalakis and solo practitioner (and featured presenter) Jess Birken share insights on picking key search terms as well as hiring SEO specialists.


ABA TECHSHOW 2019: Succeeding In A Gig Economy

Priori founder Basha Rubin and Kramer Levin’s Emily Wajert sit down with host Christopher Anderson to discuss the gig economy and how it’s affecting employee classifications.


ABA TECHSHOW 2019: Strengthen Your Core: Add-ins for Microsoft Word and Outlook

Legal journalist Bob Ambrogi and noted legal technologist Nerino Petro share some of their favorite add-ins for increasing productivity in Microsoft Word and Outlook.


ABA TECHSHOW 2019: Smart on Crime Initiative

Judge Scott Schlegel from the 24th Judicial District Court in Jefferson Parish, Louisiana stops by to discuss his Smart On Crime Initiative which inventively implements technology to substantially reduce recidivism among criminal offenders. Tune in to hear how he does it.   


ABA TECHSHOW 2019: Between Scylla And Charybdis – Managing Information Overload

Emails, texts, alerts, and phone calls… How is anyone getting work done with all the distractions? If you’re feeling overwhelmed at the office, you’re not the only one. In fact, it’s possible for some to be overwhelmed and not even realize it. OU Law Library’s Darla Jackson and Habitat for Humanity’s Amy Krieg sit down for a conversation about recognizing and properly handling information overload.


ABA TECHSHOW 2019: Is Your Web Presence Customer Friendly?

Websites are supposed to draw in clients who need your legal expertise. But for so many attorneys, this is not happening like they intended. Think Pink’s Julie Tolek (active practitioner) and Attorney Sync’s Gyi Tsakalakis (founder and marketer) join host Christopher Anderson to talk about tips and tricks for making your web presence more appealing for potential clients.


ABA TECHSHOW 2019: Technology in Law Schools: A Single Course or Curriculum Integration?

Florida State University College of Law’s Elizabeth Farrell Clifford and UNT Dallas College of Law’s Jennifer Wondracek sit down with host Gyi Tsakalakis to discuss the need for additional training of digital native law students so they can incorporate technology into their future practices.


ABA TECHSHOW 2019: Law Student Panel on LegalTech

Law students and digital natives Danielle Chirdon, Sara Agate, Ryan Dobbs, and Doug Lavey join co-hosts Adam Music from ABA Law Student Division and Laurence Colletti from Legal Talk Network to talk about the emphasis their law schools are putting on innovation and their expectations for tech in their future careers.


ABA TECHSHOW 2019: Firewalls for Today’s Law Office

Don’t get scorched by non-use of firewalls! Stanley Louissaint (founder of Fluid Designs) and Jason McNew (founder of Stronghold Cyber) stop by to discuss the importance of firewalls, what they do for you, and how to implement them.


ABA TECHSHOW 2019: Trending: GDPR and Data Privacy Laws?

Steve Puiszis of Hinshaw & Culbertson and Judy Selby of Judy Selby Consulting join host Kelly Street for a conversation about GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) and what lawyers need to know about these new regulations emanating out of the EU.


ABA TECHSHOW 2019: Automation Tools for Law Firm Operations

Conor Malloy (founder of Chi City Legal) and Kimberly Bennett (founder of K Bennett Law) share their favorite ways to automate repetitive tasks in their legal practices. Tune in to hear how you could be saving a lot of time and effort in your firm today!


ABA TECHSHOW 2019: Startup Pitch Competition

Legal journalist Bob Ambrogi hosts the 3rd annual Start-Up Pitch Competition at ABA TECHSHOW. Whether you want to hear about the latest in legal technology or you think you’ve got the next big idea, you should definitely tune in to this episode. Featured presenters include Lawble, dealWIP, DocStyle LLC, Connective Counsel, WarRoom, JurisBytes, OurChildInfo.com, TrialLine, Kinnami Software Corporation, Fixi Subscription Plans, Documate, dtour.life, EffortlessLegal, Your Firm App, and Contract.one.


ABA TECHSHOW 2019: Collaboration Using Tools You Know

In today’s legal practice, much can be gained through collaboration software whether you are collaborating with fellow attorneys or clients. Charity Anastasio (Practice Management Advisor to AILA) and Annette Sanders (big law trainer and consultant) join host Kelly Street to talk about their favorite collaboration tools.


ABA TECHSHOW 2019: Collecting and Preserving Discovery from Mobile Devices

Host Sharon Nelson sits down with ABA TECHSHOW chairs John Simek and Brett Burney (2019 and 2015 chairs respectively) to discuss methods for preserving and collecting data for discovery on mobile devices.


ABA TECHSHOW 2019: All About Drones: Legal, Practical, and Educational Applications

University of Oklahoma College of Law’s Kenton Brice and Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs Control’s Russ Cochran stop by to talk about drones, their use, and where to find information about regulations that govern their flight.


ABA TECHSHOW 2019: Clio’s Launch//Code Contest

Could your legal tech startup use $100,000? Clio’s manager of product partnerships Andrew Gay sits down to discuss their Launch//Code contest for tech developers.


Participants (in Alphabetical Order):

  1. Sara Agate
  2. Ashley Alfirevic
  3. Bob Ambrogi
  4. Charity Anastasio
  5. Christopher Anderson
  6. Kimberly Bennett
  7. Jess Birken
  8. Kenton Brice
  9. Brett Burney
  10. Danielle Chirdon
  11. Elizabeth Farrell Clifford
  12. Russ Cochran
  13. Laurence Colletti
  14. Ryan Dobbs
  15. Andrew Gay
  16. Darla Jackson
  17. Dennis Kennedy
  18. Amy Krieg
  19. Doug Lavey
  20. Stanley Louissaint
  21. Conor Malloy
  22. Jason McNew
  23. Sharon Nelson
  24. Nerino Petro
  25. Steven Puiszis
  26. Jeffrey Richardson
  27. David Ries
  28. Basha Rubin
  29. Annette Sanders
  30. Judge Scott Schlegel
  31. Ben Schorr
  32. Judy Selby
  33. Daniel Siegel
  34. John Simek
  35. Kelly Street
  36. Julie Tolek
  37. Gyi Tsakalakis
  38. Emily Wajert
  39. Stephanie Francis Ward
  40. Jennifer Wondracek
  41. Betsy Ziegler


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After receiving his J.D. and MBA, Laurence Colletti went into solo practice with emphasis in general business and commercial real estate. He has always carried a strong passion for web-based media with a particular interest in podcasting and video. Laurence leverages his legal background against that passion to help bring sophisticated, relevant content to Legal Talk Network podcasts. You can follow Laurence on Twitter at @LaurenceEsq.