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Above the Law Steps into the Current Decade

above the law logo.JPGIt’s time for Above the Law to start living in the now. We’ve been growing and growing, building on a platform that is so 2006. It’s time for us to embrace the brave new world of 2010.

We’re making two changes that we hope will make reading and interacting with Above the Law easier and less likely to result in a sexually transmitted disease. If you’ve been reading Above the Law over the past six weeks — thank you, we know we haven’t made it easy on you. We hope that these changes will ameliorate the recent problems and technical difficulties.

  • We’re changing our publishing platform to WordPress. We believe that WordPress is a better fit with our needs over time and will allow us to integrate additional ways to help you procrastinate.
  • We’re moving our commenting platform to Disqus. The Disqus platform should allow us to lessen the burden on our servers during traffic spikes. Disqus also represents our latest attempt to maintain our freewheeling comment threads without risking the lives of innocent civilians.

The Disqus platform requires you to register with a unique name and email address of your choosing. Perhaps, as many of our tipsters do, you have already set up a dummy email account? Perhaps you think it would be funny to use Grandma’s old Compuserv address? We don’t really care, Disqus isn’t going to spam you, and we won’t spam you.

As always, we will protect your anonymity, and we’re not going to sell the information you provide.

So, how exactly is this going to work?

On Disqus, you can choose whatever commenter identity you want, but please choose quickly (click here to register). One of the reasons we’re trying out Disqus is because it allows people to have unique user names. We’ve already given some of our most consistent commenters a heads up about this move. So some of your favorite ATL personas are already on Disqus (stealth ATL pwns cyber squatters). Commenter persona impersonation is something we hope to avoid with this system. So again, please register now.

There are other benefits to the new system. For one thing, it makes the comments easier to read. The Disqus system also makes it clear when you are replying to a thread directly or starting your own angle on the discussion. With Disqus you can also automatically republish your comments on Twitter, Facebook, and other blogging platforms, if you choose. We hope this will make Above the Law more integrated with those of you who like social media, without bothering those who don’t.

The new system will make it easier to see — and avoid — those who have an interest only in spamming the comments with ridiculously offensive statements and memes. But even with this change, we know that Above the Law comments will still never be the kind of place you want to show your mother (unless you have/are a very cool mother). To be clear: we remain committed to free speech and allowing the joys of and frustrations of the legal profession to be expressed in all their glory. (Our current comment moderation policy remains in effect.)

But, come on. It’s one thing to shout “fire” in a crowded theater; it’s a totally different thing to lock everybody in a theater and set fire to the place. Passion is welcome, but pyromaniacs need to get some help.

We know this is a big change in how you enjoy our site, but we hope that it will make you enjoy it more. As always, we hope you will share your thoughts with us. Send them into, or feel free to put them in the comments. Thanks!

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