Infringement tracking software and services. A specialized software vendor for law departments (See my post of March 31, 2007 for a synoptic overwiew of other kinds of software.), MarkMonitor is a “brand-tracking company that scours the Internet for infringing content and reports it back to the client.” As reported in InsideCounsel, March 2007 at 36, another such service provider is Big Mouth Media.
Law department blogs on BlawgSearch.com. As of April 8, 2007, BlawgSearch included a directory of 1,873 legal blogs, categorized by 54 kinds of subject matter and locality. Under the category “corporate law department blawgs” there were 10 on March 24, 2007. BlawgSearch can sort results by relevance and posting date, and it allows subscriptions to RSS feeds of the searches, so that you can have regular updates sent to you. The site also calculates for each blog daily, weekly, monthly and all-time legal blog popularity rankings. The very blawg you are reading ranked 240th this month, third on the category list.
We’re hardwired to cooperate. From Victoria Pynchon’s Negotiation Law Blog under “Neuroscience” we learn that MRI images of students’ brains during collaboration activities disclose that the act of cooperating with another person makes the brain light up with joy. Tough break for give-no-quarter litigators. Pynchon mentions research reported by Steve Seletta at the Center for the Study of Neuroeconomics at George Mason University.
Gossip isn’t necessarily malicious. I have always thought gossip connotes slander and scurrilous rumor-mongering, but not so according to Jack Levin, a professor of criminology and sociology at Northwestern University. The Wall St. J., June 20, 2006 at B1, states that Levin’s studies have “found that only a third of gossip is negative, while the rest is neutral or positive in equal parts” (See my post of Oct. 10, 2005 on office politics.).