This Blog, One Year In

Last December, I mothballed the AdamsDrafting blog and fired up The Koncise Drafter.

If I were concerned about my stats, that move would have been a disaster—as it’s home to four years of my musings, the AdamsDrafting blog still gets about three times as many hits as The Koncise Drafter. But I’m not selling ads and don’t have to meet any corporate targets, so my new home suits me just fine. Anyone who lands on AdamsDrafting and wants more won’t have any trouble finding me.

What about the content? I primarily use my blog as a means of digesting new developments and airing new ideas. If anything, the past year has seen an uptick in novelty. For example, in just the past two months I’ve tentatively identified two new categories of contract language lurking at the fringes of the categories-of-contract-language universe. In my world, that’s what passes for thrills.

When it comes time to prepare the third edition of A Manual of Style for Contract Drafting, I’ll have three years of blog posts and articles to draw from. The third edition will contain a boatload of new material.

So I remain excited by this stuff. I’m amazed that my area of focus—the building blocks of contract language—remains a “niche” subject. But just as it seems there’s only one lawyer who’s also a type designer—that would be Matthew Butterick—maybe I shouldn’t be surprised that I’m the only guy constantly speaking and writing about my topic, as it calls on a particular combination of interests and aptitudes. At least I’m not quite so lonely, now that Mark Anderson at IP Draughts and Brian Rogers at theContractsGuy chime in.

I’ve also used my blog to explain what Koncision is about. That prompted an anonymous reader to send me a few months ago a peevish email objecting that my promoting Koncision was interfering with his consumption of free content. My response was, of course, that he’s free to move on. And I think that overall, the promotional component of this blog has been low-key.

The comments remain an important part of this blog, as they help me refine my ideas. Although comment volume has dropped off, perhaps because people have other social-media outlets, the juicier posts still prompt a bunch of readers to chime in.

But I see turnover in the commenter ranks. People comment for a couple of years, then they move on; that’s to be expected. This holiday season, I’ll hoist a glass to all past and current commenters.

In case it’s of any interest, here are the ten most-read blog posts from the past year:

  1. Indemnification: A Misunderstood Concept
  2. Shortcomings in the Drafting of the Google–Motorola Mobility Merger Agreement
  3. Indemnification: Glenn West Wades In!
  4. Exploring “Shall Cause”
  5. What Does “Prevailing Party” Mean?
  6. My Take on “Force Majeure” Provisions
  7. Dubious Contract Drafting: An Extract from a Model Confidentiality Agreement
  8. “As Liquidated Damages and Not As a Penalty”
  9. An Alternative to Indemnification Language
  10. Koncise Drafter Giveaway: My “Before” and “After” Versions of an Extract of a Master Professional Services Agreement

I feel privileged that I’ve been able to continue on the path described in this February 2009 blog post. At some point the well should start running dry, but there’s no sign of that just yet.

About the author

Ken Adams is the leading authority on how to say clearly whatever you want to say in a contract. He’s author of A Manual of Style for Contract Drafting, and he offers online and in-person training around the world. He’s also chief content officer of LegalSifter, Inc., a company that combines artificial intelligence and expertise to assist with review of contracts.