ALM (p/k/a American Lawyer Media) upgraded the user interface of its digital publications this week.
From Gina Passarella, the Executive Editor of The American Lawyer:
Our improvements will deliver the same breaking news and in-depth analysis of core U.S. and international business of law trends, but in a more visually appealing, intuitive and user-friendly fashion.
The new design, including the vastly improved mobile experience, puts all of ALM’s news at your fingertips. You can still start your day at The American Lawyer but also easily access ALM’s broader offerings across publications, topics and geographies.
And from Zach Warren, Editor In Chief of LegalTech News:
Just like many of the legal technologies out there, we decided to do our own user interface upgrade, and we hope that the result is a more reliable, streamlined, and ultimately enjoyable experience. If you’re browsing on the Web, you’ll notice a more up-to-date looking home page and intuitive taxonomy, which allows for easier navigation to get to the types of articles you want. And if you’re browsing on mobile, as so many of our readers do, then you’ll get the same upgraded experience with a brand new, from-the-ground-up mobile site.
ALM has about twenty legal publications that are curated into the law.com site. I believe each of the publications ran on separate sites and separate domains until now. Each publication is now running on the law.com domain – though the user experience may not be effected by that as each publication is running as folder or subdirectory, ie, www.law.com/legaltechnews and the RSS feeds remain separate.
In addition to the interface, it appears ALM is going to blend news from its sister publications into other sister publications – or least make it easier to navigate the curated news on law.com. From Passarella:
Our reporters and editors talk to lawyers every day. We know it’s more vital than ever that you stay abreast of developments across multiple areas of interest in addition to business of law, including your practice areas, industry developments, your local professional community and your professional networks.
A lawyer who practices IP law as a partner at a large firm in New York needs to know what’s happening in Texas courts–and Texas Lawyer can provide that. That IP practitioner will also want the latest on big IP cases before judges in Delaware or California or at the Federal Circuit–so easy access to Delaware Law Weekly or The Recorder is helpful. Readers also benefit from insight into how other large firms are handling rate pressure, or the evolving thinking around compensation practices, topics we at The American Lawyer explore daily. The new law.com platform makes navigating all of those areas of interest easy and intuitive while still allowing you to keep The American Lawyer accessible and better than ever on mobile and your desktop.
ALM hasn’t said whether they’ve upgraded or changed their publishing platforn.
Pages do appear to be loading faster, both directly and on my news aggregator, Feedly (I subscribe to a feed of all publications through law.com). If so, that’ll make for a much improved user experience. I have been frustrated by slow load times to the point that I often just skip reading and sharing stories from ALM reporters. Improved speed would also make for an improved user experience for viewing ALM stories shared on social media.
No question the mobile interface is a big improvement. Some quirks remain with the “responsive breaks” on my iPhone being off on images, borders and some ad presentation. My guess is they’ll be worked out.
I’m not sure who runs products and tech at ALM. It would be interesting to getting their take on the upgrades and what they’re continuing to work on. Also makes for good social media dialogue with users.