Back in April, I posted here about the announcement by Pamela Jones of Groklaw, affectionately known as PJ, that she would stop editing and publishing new articles on the open-source law blog as of May 16. Yesterday, PJ posted an update, announcing that Groklaw would, after all, continue to be developed, under the direction of Mark Webbink, and noting that she wanted to help keep the community effort going:
Groklaw is all of us, not just me, and I have always taken your input as seriously as you would expect me to. So I thought about it, and I realized you are right. I would be irresponsible not to try to leave Groklaw in someone’s hands who could keep things going. The community is what makes Groklaw of real value, and it’s a FOSS community resource that we built together.
Mr. Webbink is a Visiting Professor at New York Law School, where he is Executive Director of the Center for Patent Innovations, and a Senior Lecturing Fellow at Duke University School of Law. He has also served as General Counsel of Red Hat, and is on the board of the Software Freedom Law Foundation. He has particular expertise in patent and other intellectual property law. One of his ideas for Groklaw, going forward, is to involve some of his students in producing articles for the site.
I like his vision for Groklaw very much. What he has in mind to do is to include his law students, asking them to write articles for Groklaw too, for credit. So you won’t lose out on anything, as far as learning the legal process. In fact, it’ll be better, because Mark is a lawyer, so he knows many things I don’t.
As I noted back in April, Groklaw was the first attempt to apply the collaboration methods of open source software to the law, and that produced a cooperative and very productive joint effort by legal folks and geeks. I hope that version 2.0 will continue to build on the fine foundation that PJ has created.