Comment thread: Overlawyered adjourned

This is a comment thread on the news we’re announcing today about the end of Overlawyered’s long run.

I’ve had much cause to appreciate our commenters over the years, who have made me laugh, question my premises, and realize when subjects were more complicated than I thought. Overlawyered’s commenters are remarkably well informed on all sorts of topics, often much more so than I am. This has served not just to amuse and entertain, but to improve and correct my own writing. For that, and for everything else, I thank you.


  • Very, very sorry to hear this. I will miss this blog very much.

  • I will miss OVerlawyered. But I will keep reading you at Cato and on Facebook.

  • I’m sad to hear it, and wish you well in the future.

    • This was my first read of the morning for a long time. You will be missed.

  • I’m sorry to see you leave. I’ve enjoyed reading your comments for a long time. I’ve disagreed with a lot of your posts, being on the opposite side of the political spectrum, but they always gave me something to think about.

  • It’ll be a shame to see you go. I’ve enjoyed reading this blog for many, many years.

  • I have nothing to add to this except thanks for all the time you have spent on this.

    It’s been a real pleasure to read over the last 15 years or so I have been a reader.

  • So sorry to see you go. Thanks for all your hard work over the years.

    As a non-lawyer myself I have learned a lot from this site.

    Anyone have any recommendations for a similar content.

    • > Anyone have any recommendations for a similar content.

      I notice Walter has posted a list of sympathetic blogs:

      but might we want to start a more focused thread? (Personally, however, I don’t have anyone particular in mind.)

      • I think this might make a nice topic for a separate and more focused thread. I plan to launch additional commenter threads over the next week and I’ll put this on the list for possible topics.

  • Thank you Walter for all you have contributed over the years to the discussion of what works and what doesn’t in our legal system. Your daily voice will be missed.

  • Thank you for maintaining my favorite blog for several years. Will this blog remain on-line inactive, or are you planning to take it down?

    I have appreciated the thoughtfulness of my fellow commenters. Did it come that way naturally, or did you have to curate out the sort of rubbish that floods comment pages?

    • 1) The archives should remain up indefinitely, thanks to Cato.

      2) Comments being moderated meant that I could exclude a few disruptive personalities but more important meant that personalities like that weren’t attracted to drive by in the first place. It also meant that I could occasionally truncate or omit comments from people who were generally valued members of the commenter group but might lapse into behavior such as personal attacks, threadjacking, or simply rattling on. Almost every frequent commenter was subject to moderation at least once for doing one of these things, and I myself was among the worst offenders — many times I dashed off an impulsive or dismissive comment, came back ten minutes later to realize “What was I thinking?”, and deleted or truncated what I had said.

      I know exactly how rubbishy the comments section is at many other sites, and I am proud of Overlawyered — and of you, collectively, the commenters here — that we weren’t like that.

  • Thanks for 21 years of informative writing about a subject that is important to everyone. Especially for is non-lawyers, who lurk in the background and marvel at ways that the laws work.

  • Sad news. I’ve been reading everyday for years.

    Thanks so much for your hard work.

  • What is the chance that I can sue you in court for alienation of affection? We have that law in North Carolina.

  • As a non-lawyer, I would like to thank you very much for making an important very technical subject comprehensible to the layman in an engaging way. While I am definitely going to miss this blog, I wish you well adjusting to the new balance in your life – may you enjoy many more productive years, in whichever venue you choose.

  • Well, heck. This is a daily check for me. Thanks and kudos, Walter.

  • Thank you for everything you have written. I have enjoyed reading the blog and find it informative and thought-provoking. I will miss the site as its something I look forward to checking daily.

  • Bravo.


  • I wish to add my voice to the chorus, regretting the ending, pleased to have been here, and wishing you well.


  • I never commented much but it has been a pleasure. Good luck on future endeavors

  • Many thanks. I understand the decision but I will really miss the blog.
    I have enjoyed your writing from the beginning (some time in the first year).
    I hope to continue reading your contributions to the Cato Institute.

  • Walter, I hate to see it come to an end. This site has been a part of my morning routine since 2014, from a misadventure into law school, studies in accountancy, the establishment of two businesses, and a new foray into the world of manufacturing and engineering. Few things in my life stay constant as I always seek to replace them with something new and better. This was one of those constants, and I shall miss it greatly. It has the pithiness that Volokh lacks without sacrificing the substance that could be of use to a lay reader. I hope you will reconsider.

  • Walter, you and I disagree about many issues, but I have always valued my access to Overlawyered as a source for information and commentary about a range of matters on which we disagree, as well as those on which we are in accord).

    I can appreciate how you could find management of a solo blog as just a bit too much to handle. I have always had the luxury of being a co-blogger for Public Citizen’s Consumer Law and Policy blog.

    I shall miss this blog very much.

  • This is sad news indeed.

    I must commend the intelligence and lone-warrior nature of OL. There is a short list of writers out there who have stood, practically alone, against some very powerful institutions or “total saturation ideas”. These institutions and ideas resist outside or inside criticism, throwing up high defensive walls.

    THE LAW is without doubt one of those institutions, probably the premier one. Regular people fear it because of the intelligence of its members and the overwhelming complexity and opacity of its operation. It often preens as the protector of justice, when in fact the opposite may be true. OL has made a sustained and valuable critique of it from Day One. That is public service at its finest.

    Well done.

  • I’m disappointed to see this run come to an end. I’m going to miss it. Have you considered cutting back to once a week so we don’t go through withdrawal?

    I’ve been a follower since about 2001 when a friend told me about it. I’m not a lawyer and learned much from your links and comments. What I’ll miss most is that you’re not afraid to criticize those in your own profession who go too far and abuse our legal system.

    Perhaps, as one of your last posts, you could give us a short list of your favorite websites similar to your own.

  • I will miss Overlawyered. I found it helpful as a person who handles tort claims for a living (a non-lawyer claim representative for insurance carriers). I enjoyed the “rabbit holes” some of the links took me down!

  • I’ve been hitting this blog for at least 20 years, probably from the start. It’s been a part of my daily routine and I’ve enjoyed it immensely. It’ll be missed, but there’s a lot of good information out there, so I’ll just keep doing what I’m doing. You keep doing what your doing too and I’m sure I’ll see you around. Thank you for your work! –Gene

  • So this is what I’ll remember about 2020, not the year of the plague, but the year Overlawered ceased publication.

    OL was the first blog — law-related or otherwise — I ever read regularly, and I’ve paid at least one visit a day for many, many years. Once in a blue moon I submitted a comment, but more often I just passed on sightings I thought would be of interest and always received a polite thank you.

    Now it’s my turn. Thank you, Mr. Olson, for the thousands of interesting, educational, and entertaining posts you’ve shared with us. You were kind enough to sign the copies of your books I shoved under your nose at a Temple University speaking gig some years ago. If less OL means more books, I look forward to repeating the exercise.

    Warm best wishes.


  • While I am sad to see the end also realize change is good and am happy for you to turn over a new leaf and focus on your other writing projects. The number of type of people who regularly commented on your various articles of interest were regularly informative and amusing, and included regular perspective and critique from plaintiff attorneys or others not necessarily aligned with the blog’s tort reform theme. I’ve been tracking this blog for at least fifteen years, submitted countless leads, and even allowed to contribute as a guest blogger a few times. Walter, thank you and I wish you the best!

  • Well damn.

    This blog was one I started reading way back when blogs first became a thing. The only one from back then besides this one that I am still reading daily is Instapundit. And even he went the multi-blogger route a little while back.

    Best wishes on your other endeavors.

  • Walter:

    What a loss to the legal community. I’m glad you will continue to write. Always interesting often amusing.


    John J. Vecchione

  • I first found Overlawyered in the early 2000s and immediately went back to read all the previous posts. I will truly miss it, as it is the first thing I read after the baseball scores.
    Now my first two subjects are gone. Walter, I’m not surprised you are doing this as I have been amazed that you could juggle so much at one time. We will truly miss you and congratulations on a job well done. Paul

  • Understand and respect the decision, but I am rather selfishly going to miss this as my daily routine. Looking forward to more good work from you over at Cato.

  • An appropriate time for me to express my appreciation and admiration for a well-written and informative blog.

    And I’m glad it’s only adjourned, not dismissed with prejudice.

  • Mr. Olson,

    Thank you for your many years of entertaining posts. I am not a lawyer. Your blog has brought to my attention a significant number of topics that every layman should be aware of, like civil forfeiture. I know that you will continue to write on other sites, but this one will be sorely missed by me and others like me.

  • I’m really sorry to see you go. Your blog has been on my daily reading list for a LONG time. I’ve always been a lurker, until this moment. May God bless you in your future endeavors. You’ll be missed.

  • Long time listener, first time caller. I don’t even recall how or when I stumbled upon this site, but it has been bookmarked and a part of my daily internet routine since then. Thank you for inspiring me to read about law, and leading me to so many other insightful and thought provoking writers. Cheers!

  • Objection!

  • A steel darts teammate at the time recommended me to your site just short of 20 years ago, and I’ve looked in nearly every day since. It’s the longest I’ve been with a site—even before Facebook by nine years and even longer (not by much) than the National Weather Service site (one of my lifetime interests has been weather, so much so I’ve been known to record eight hours of the Weather Channel in days of severe weather!).

    In that time I’ve been amazed, outraged, saddened, surprised (a lot), baffled, and more; yet the two things I consistently been are educated and curious. You’ve made the law understandable, easier to grasp, even entertaining to a non-lawyer.

    It will be sad to see Overlawyered end; it has brought light to an area that has badly needed it, and still does.
    I wish someone could pick it up and continue it but it likely won’t be the same without your guidance.

    It’s been quite a ride, thank you for letting me come aboard and come along for the last 20 years—and of course, for everyone else to come along since day one.

    —Melvin Hagerman
    Colorado Springs, CO.

  • This is probably the online publication I’ve followed – it has outlasted many, many others I once read but that have faded or disappeared. Thanks for the 20 years of free education and entertainment. Best of wishes!

  • Two announcements today: (1) a mysterious disturbance in the planet’s magnetic field; and (2) Overlawyered is to cease publication.

    Coincidence? I think not.

  • Many people don’t realize the time and effort it takes to blog and maintain a site.

    The fact that you did this for almost 21 years shows an almost unheard of commitment or a serious mental illness. (Said in jest, of course.)

    There are very few people who can say they made an impact on the internet in a positive substantive way.

    You, sir, are one of those people.

    Enjoy your blogging retirement and increased participation in other ventures and parts of your life.

  • I’ve made this site part of my daily reading for years. Thank you for all the time you put into it.

  • You have done an amazing job with this blog. I’m really sorry to see it go. I will invite you to guest speak at my class again next semester (either live or Zoom).

  • Your devotion to this work, including middle of the night and weekend posts, bespeaks a quiet faithfulness that is rare in any endeavor. I fleetingly thought that hey, maybe WO could be cloned!
    Thank you again. I have mined its entries and archives for use in my own publications. I am delighted that Cato will preserve this comprehensive and priceless trove of insight into our legal culture.

  • Awwwwwww. This has been my go to place for several years now. As a non-lawyer I enjoyed learning something about things I no nothing about. I learned as much from the comments as the blog posts themselves.

    I’m disappointed Overlawyered is going away but understand and appreciate your dedication to make this a top site year after year. I will continue to follow you at Cato and wish you well. Thank You very much.

  • Funny, I came to Overlawyered as the result of 9-11. I found Neptunis Lex right after 9-11 while I was reading about the Pentagon. From Lex, I found the Steeljaw scribe site and there was a link to Overlawyered. Now all three sites are either gone or going away. I’d see something on the news or on line and then I’d come here to see if it was mentioned. I’ve posted a bit here and have been set straight many times, one of the reasons I hung around. I’ve learned quite a bit and have gotten to respect many of the opinions here, even if I don’t always agree.

  • WOW. We openly weep at losing the pithy exposure of those who so need to be reined in. Who will dis the suits now? Thanks for all you do.