Articling debate attracts unprecedented attention

Posted: 10/25/2012

Convocation’s first debate about the future of articling was webcast live today on the Gazette.

While Convocation unanimously agreed to defer a decision about what articling will look like for future law school graduates, the webcast and accompanying real-time discussion drew significant attention online.

Comments from panelists the Law Society had invited to the liveblog were peppered with feedback from a range of people watching the debate in real time.

A hashtag, #articling, which fed social media comments into the liveblog, quickly became one of the most discussed topics on Twitter, trending Canada-wide and reaching No. 1 in Ontario, after being tweeted and re-tweeted hundreds of times.

Nearly 1100 posts were made to the Law Society Gazette liveblog from 165 unique accounts. More than 225 individuals tuned in to the webcast.

Law Society Treasurer, Thomas Conway, acknowledged a new level of engagement between Law Society observers and its governing body, the Benchers.

“The interest garnered online in today’s Convocation debate is unprecedented,” he said. “We welcome the opportunity to make the Law Society’s processes more transparent.

“Questions around the future of articling are central to the legal profession.”

Following a robust and informed debate, Convocation voted to defer a decision until the next Convocation session on November 22.