Would members of the profession offer succour to the Gazette’s editorial team as they waved a tearful adieu to the romance of print? Perhaps a gesture akin to lining the route of a fine old steam train’s final journey, stringing up the equivalent of some professional bunting, and a brass band at the end of the line.
Well, Obiter was pleased that many did, on social media at least. ‘It’s the way of the world,’ Mills & Reeve lawyer Nigel Shepherd (@topfamilylawyer) tweeted, ‘but part of me still hankers after print!’
‘End of an era, #LastPrintIssue of @lawsocgazette,’ Jane Cassell (@JCWillsProbate) tweeted, with a photo of her copy. ‘I’ve been receiving this weekly magazine by post for over 20 years, JCx.’
Another, with a harder heart, thought the Gazette had made the shift months ago. But not so Kath James from Wales (@kathyjturk), who will have to take care with the new digital edition: ‘End of era of paper copy Gazette – always read mine in the bath with a cuppa.’
The move to digital had another rooting around in his archives. Solicitor Edward Lewis (@edwarddglewis) declared: ‘I came across my copy from the 150th anniversary [of the Law Society] edition today. Surely worth something? Anything?’ It’s in mint condition, apparently, but he’d never sell, of course. ‘Got to go now as I need to contact my broker to increase the house contents policy…!’
And here’s Paul Gilbert, one time chair of the Law Society’s in-house lawyers. ‘Back when I qualified (1987),’ Gilbert tweeted in reply to features editor Ed Reyes, ‘@lawsocgazette was a welcome weekly confirmation that I had indeed passed those exams. On a few occasions since I have also been lucky enough to be published in it. I do wish you Ed, and your colleagues, the very best for your digital future.’
That Paul’s paper affirmation of qualification will be unavailable to future NQs is to be regretted. As trainee Gary Steel (@GarySSteel) lamented: ‘Ohh no. I qualify in January 2023 and it was one of the things I was looking forward to. I think the @lawsocgazette should send a paper copy to every newly qualified solicitor, just once.’
Sorry Gary. But hey, chill. We’re still here. Like that old steam train, it doesn’t much matter what platform we pull in on.