If you live in North America and haven’t experienced a Legal Geek event — now’s your chance. A not-to-be-missed apex of the legaltech year in London for the past three years, Legal Geek is on its way to Brooklyn, NY on June 25.
The most recent London event drew more than 2,000 attendees — technologists, lawyers, investors, consultants, students, and legaltech enthusiasts — to the Truman Brewery in the city’s startup Mecca, the East End district of Shoreditch. Wanting to hang on to that vibe, Legal Geek founder Jimmy Vestbirk scheduled his inaugural North American event at BKLYN Studios in Downtown Brooklyn. Not exactly the same scene as Shoreditch, but likely an alternative to the last legal conference you attended in Manhattan.
Legal Geek is not your typical legaltech conference or trade show. If you ever wished your legal career could be as hip and fun and cutting-edge as your brother-in-law’s latest startup gig, then this is the place for you. It’s the conference where ties are forbidden and the agenda isn’t sponsor-driven, it’s idea-driven.
Aside from obvious networking benefits, the event provides an enviable platform for launching and testing new thoughts, solutions, and other innovations. The outcomes can often bring significant changes to the way work is done in the legal industry or otherwise. Thomson Reuters is excited to take advantage of the opportunity this year to unveil one of our own new initiatives… more on that to come.
A highlight of Legal Geek is always the slate of speakers, who deliver short, TED Talk-style orations about something they are passionate about. We checked in with some of the speakers scheduled for the upcoming Legal Geek New York — some first-timers and some veterans — and here’s what they had to say:
Catherine Krow, CEO of Digitory Legal
Digitory is a legaltech startup that provides a data-driven solution for predicting, pricing, and managing legal matters. Krow started the company after a 17-year career in Big Law.
“Last year’s event brought together 2,000-plus of the most passionate legal technology “geeks” in the world — from industry titans to law students — in a very cool, up-and-coming area of London. The vibe is casual, fun, and provides a completely different level of networking. Brooklyn is the perfect place to replicate that atmosphere.
“Legal Geek curates its speakers and content carefully, so the information I learned from those talks has helped Digitory stay at the forefront of industry change. Today, I still think back to last year’s presentations when I make business decisions and plan for the future.”
Krow will be speaking on “the transformative power of data — why we should dig into it and do better.”
Mark Cohen, CEO of Legal Mosaic
Cohen is a well-known speaker, author, and consultant on the future of the legal services industry. He is the author of a popular series of articles on the industry for Forbes.
“The first time I spoke at the Legal Geek London event, I was blown away by the vibe. It was so different from any legal event I had been to anywhere. It was fun, informative, and lively — I called it “Law’s Woodstock.” I’m delighted the show will now play in Brooklyn. Should be a big hit!”
Cohen will speak on “Law in the digital age,” and he expects to meet “interesting people and a cold beer.”
Noah Waisberg, Co-Founder & CEO of Kira Systems
Kira provides software for analyzing text-based documents, including contracts. Waisberg also left a Big Law career to start the company.
Waisberg has been with Legal Geek since Day 1, having spoken at all three London events. His talk this time around will be about “How contracts should get more attention than they do.” Look for him to bring a prop or two on-stage to make his points. (He’s famous for making avocado toast on stage to illustrate the idea of bricolage, the bringing together of diverse things into something new.)
“One thing I love about the London Legal Geek events is that attendee badges only give names, not companies or roles. The person you’re talking to could be a partner at a law firm, a sales person from a competitor, head of legal innovation at a significant corporate player, or a journalist. (I had conversations with all of these at the last London event.) I expect the same in Brooklyn.”
Jason Moyse, Co-Founder of Law Made
Law Made is focused on the legal space with a particular emphasis on supporting entrepreneurship and intrapreneurship. Moyse works across the legal ecosystem with legaltech entrepreneurs, law firms, corporates, and investors engaged in building technology-enabled legal services.
“Legal Geek is a fresh soup of Big Law, corporates, regulators, NewLaw, legaltech startups, and academia — all in one place, addressing issues from access to justice on up to the latest in commercial legal innovation and very cutting edge technology. There’s much-needed joy, fun, and energy at a legal conference with no tolerance for marketing hype.
“The best thing about Legal Geek is that it brings out the Magic Circle and Wall Street crowd and puts them in the same room as the garage guys with nary a tinge of irony. Everyone is equally relevant.”
Joshua Kubicki, Co-Founder of Bold Duck Studio
Kubicki and his partner Kim Craig have both held key strategic and operational roles at Seyfarth Shaw. Bold Duck uses lean and design methods to help clients craft new business models and enhance existing ones using a digital, human, and business-centered approach.
Kubicki will be speaking on the emerging competitive frontier in Big Law: Practice Venturing. “Law firms are platforms, and partners are customers. Practice groups are businesses, and partners are founders. Alternative legal service providers (ALSPs) and the Big4 may grab headlines, but practice venturing is grabbing the clients and the revenue. It’s a hidden market that is growing rapidly and it represents the most significant change in the business of Big Law since the advent of the billable hour.”
What does Kubicki expect from Legal Geek? “Punches to the face and slaps on the back — metaphorically speaking. I want reactions to the Practice Venturing system that I will talk about. I introduced the concept earlier this year, and it has sparked curiosity. I want to share it more so I can learn where the weaknesses are, as well as build on its strengths.”