People regularly ask me what “legal technology” or “legal tech” means when I use the terms and tell them it is something I’ve focused on for many years. In my class in Entrepreneurial Lawyering last fall in Michigan State’s LegalRnD program, I realized that “legal technology” was a term I took for granted and it was, in fact, something I needed to define and explain to my students.

Based on some ideas I picked up from Chrissie Lightfoot, a few ideas of my own, a little creativity, a little commonsense, and an infatuation with quadrant charts, I came up with the following chart for my students:

Image of Quadrant Chart

I’m now ready to unleash it on an unsuspecting and unprepared world for feedback and, I hope, improvement. I think it works as a pedagogical tool. I don’t think it quite works yet as a classic quadrant chart – I’ve never quite figured out what the Y-axis should be and I’m not sure plotting points for tools within the chart would actually work.

To me, that means the chart is ready for feedback and the wisdom of the crowd.

I’ve decided to post the chart here. Please comment or email me if you have thoughts, questions or suggestions. I’ll put it out under a Creative Commons CC BY license to make it super easy for people to use.

Tom Mighell and I have also recorded an episode on The Kennedy-Mighell Report podcast in which we talk about the chart and definitions of “legal technology” or “legal tech” or “law tech”in some detail. That episode should be posted on Friday, January 18, 2019. I’ll add a a link when it’s available. It might be helpful to listen to the show and the explanations there before making suggestions. Or not.

I’m curious to see if people find this helpful or useful. If you think there’s already something better, I’d love to know that and maybe switch to that.

Also, this version is really a first and rough draft. I know that from font choices to other design and spacing, there is work to be done before I would consider it “final.” If you have strong feelings about design and are good at it and want to take a stab at an improved design, let me know and we’ll see how we might work on that.


Until March 31, 2019, I have a special discount code (20% off) for any readers who want to purchase the new edition of The Lawyers Guide to Collaboration Tools and Technologies. I have it on good authority that it makes a fabulous Valentine’s Day gift. Simply go to the ordering page for the book at and use the code TECHTOOL19 at checkout.


[Originally posted on DennisKennedy.Blog (]

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