End of Year Brings Closing of Two Sites I’ve Previously Reviewed

We often mark the debut of law-related websites and products here, but this post is about two sites — both previously reviewed here — that are closing down as 2014 comes to an end.

LawPalchecklistOne of the products that impressed me earlier this year at ABA Techshow was LawPal, a cloud-based project management tool. Created by former corporate lawyer Yael Citro, the simple yet elegant platform was part deal room, part project manager. Unfortunately, the site never built up enough of a user base to sustain itself. “In the end, we just couldn’t get enough lawyers using the platform on a daily basis,” Citro said in an email. “The demand to work differently just isn’t there from the lawyer side. Everyone loved the product, but very few people felt the need to use it.” Although the website remains up, the business stopped operating as of Dec. 1.

In 2013, I wrote a post here about docTrackr, an innovative web service that not only allowed users to share documents securely, but also to track what happens to shared documents and to retain control over them — even revoking access to a document after you’ve shared it. On Dec. 30, docTrackr will officially cease operations and all docTrackr applications will close down (except that documents previously shared and encrypted using docTrackr will continue to function until March 31, 2015.)

But docTrackr’s functionality is not disappearing. As I reported here back in August, docTrackr was acquired by Intralinks, which was working to incorporate docTrackr’s features into its own secure file sharing and collaboration platform, Intralinks VIA. ¬†When I reviewed Intralinks VIA in that August blog post, the integration of docTrackr was only partially complete. Since then, VIA has undergone a major upgrade and now includes much of the same functionality. I plan to post a review of this new version sometime soon.


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  • And that’s exactly why we as attorneys should not depend on third-party hosted encryption for documents or e-mail, particularly from startups but overall: when they go out of business, your materials (subject to your ethical obligations and retention rules) no longer “continue to function.” I wonder about the first judge asked to excuse an attorney’s failure to properly represent a client based upon a hosted encryption service closing down. {Jonathan}

  • I had a chance to meet all of the LawPal founders and to follow their story from the very early days, then throughout the product pivot. Very sad to hear they will be shutting down LawPal. It certainly did seem very clean and elegant solution in its own domain.

    From what I can read, it seems they did not manage to break from the so-called “Mom test”. Also, changing the user’s behavior is a risky path to take, especially in the service (including Software-as-a-Service) industry.

    One has to choose whether it disrupts or supports an industry. With their early product idea they were more on the “disruptive” thinking, while they have shifted to “supporting” with their product pivot (the both you & I had a chance to see at Chicago ABA Techshow). Well, the choice to support also means they needed to tap into the daily habits of their target base, rather than to change these.

    Thanks Bob for the report, my best for Yael & Alex.


  • Excellent article. I am going through some of these issues ass well..