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When Supreme Court Cases Break, FindLaw's Social Media Team Rules

By Andrew Chow, Esq. on June 26, 2013 9:55 AM

When big news breaks at the U.S. Supreme Court, FindLaw's social media team springs into action with blog posts, Facebook and Twitter updates, and links in our popular newsletters.

But just how do we stay on top of breaking Court news in order to keep our readers and followers informed?

Take Tuesday's big ruling on the Voting Rights Act as an example. Even before the Supreme Court released its opinion about 10:15 a.m. Eastern time, FindLaw's bloggers were on the case.

For some, that meant an early wake-up call, considering the three-hour time difference between Washington, D.C., and FindLaw's Silicon Valley offices, where our social media team is based.

"I wake up at 6:45, punch myself in the face, and turn on my laptop," says Willie Peacock, Senior Writer for FindLaw's Legal Professional Blogs, including our widely read U.S. Supreme Court blog. "Then I do everything to try to stay awake while reading the opinions."

That in-depth reading pays off, often in the form of legal insight our readers can't get anywhere else. For example, while most reporters focused on the majority opinion in the Voting Rights case, Peacock's blog post focused more on Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg's notable dissent.

FindLaw's consumer blog audience also benefits from a reasoned legal perspective. While blogs like Law and Daily Life and Decided may not be the very first to break Supreme Court news, they offer careful and concise summaries of the Court's analysis and potential impact.

"A real robust analysis of a case will take more than 15 minutes," says Brett Snider, Senior Writer for FindLaw's Consumer Blogs. As TV coverage of the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare) showed us last summer, "the media often gets things wrong. That's why I read the opinions frontwards and backwards before I write."

Once our blogs are posted, they're shared with FindLaw's followers on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and included in FindLaw's free newsletters. For particularly huge cases, we'll also post court rulings in their entirety on our Courtside blog.

So now you know how FindLaw handles breaking U.S. Supreme Court news. Stay tuned as we head into a historic day at the Court.

June 26, 2013 Editor's Note: FindLaw writers jumped into action again early this morning, West Coast time, to cover the High Court's decisions on DOMA and California's Prop 8. Come back for more analysis on more blogs for both consumers and legal professionals.

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