When the Law Society Gazette marked its centenary 15 years ago, my predecessor remarked that there was little in the 21st-century magazine that the solicitor of 1903 would recognise – and much that would horrify him.
Quite so. And of course it would have been a ‘him’. The Edwardian gentlemen of Chancery Lane adhered to a rigid decorum that banned from the Gazette ‘expressions of opinion or anything of a controversial character’. Only after two world wars had demolished such ossified notions of propriety did the Gazette actually begin to accept letters and articles from solicitors.
When, in 1972, the Gazette became a weekly, an editorial portentously remarked: ‘Change is taking place more quickly today than at any other period of history. Information about something as fundamental as the law should be disseminated as quickly as possible.’ Tim Berners-Lee was 16 at the time.
Today, the weekly paper copy continues to be posted free to practising solicitors. As other legal magazines have faded away or retreated behind expensive paywalls, we are proud to continue to deliver the latest news and business intelligence in whichever format you prefer to receive it.
But we are also conscious that we need to evolve with you. That is why, in 2017, we commissioned extensive readership research. This yielded many insights. Most importantly, it showed that a big majority of solicitors still greatly value their weekly print copy.
Since the Gazette went fully digital six years ago, traffic to lawgazette.co.uk has risen exponentially. But just as many solicitors read their paper copy and consider it to be a core element of the Law Society’s member offer.
Today, we relaunch the Gazette with a contemporary new design, based on the research. Improvements include better navigation, more commentary and new content including dedicated Law Society news.
We hope you like it.