Legal Help Searches in the Your Money or Your Life (YMYL) framework

Google Search has training guidelines for people who evaluate legal help websites and results. These are called Search Quality Evaluator Guidelines. And one of the central principles they teach people rating websites is YMYL, or Your Money or Your Life. Concerns and sites that concern high-YMYL matters. YMYL is framed around financial stability, health, safety, and welfare. Here is a …

MargaretLegal Help Searches in the Your Money or Your Life (YMYL) framework

Government sites aren’t always .gov sites

Election government websites often aren’t .gov websites. Many of them have TLD (top-level domains) that are .coms, .orgs, or other domains. That means a search engine, social media platform, or other ‘broker’ of online information can’t automatically just send people to a government site. It’s hard to easily sort authoritative information from misinformation or low-quality information. See this report from …

MargaretGovernment sites aren’t always .gov sites

National legal help sites from the government

One of the problems with legal help online is the lack of national nonprofits that offer legal help. Legal aid in the US is very local, with county or state legal aid groups providing information and services to people. And most legal help websites have been created at the state level, to provide that state’s legal info. The issue is …

MargaretNational legal help sites from the government

Marking Videos with ‘Authoritative Sources’

Video platforms like YouTube are being used to share advice and get help with problems. But what about unreliable or low-quality information being shared about health, news, politics, and legal matters? At least for health, the YouTube team has created a new intervention to mark when a video is created by an authoritative, reliable source. See this example of a …

MargaretMarking Videos with ‘Authoritative Sources’

Legal Help (and Harms) on Social Media

Our team is starting to do preliminary explorations of how we may audit social media platforms like TikTok, Instagram, and YouTube to see how legal help is (or could be) delivered on them. Based on our research assistant Carolina Nazario’s work, here are two themes for research and design that we’re exploring: Area 1: Spotting Legal Influencer & Public Interest …

MargaretLegal Help (and Harms) on Social Media

Data-Driven Legal Help

Digital Legal Needs analysis of an online legal clinic to predict seasonal trends in people’s legal needs by Nóra Al Haider and Margaret Hagan, originally published on Legal Design and Innovation Stanford Legal Design Lab collaborated with the American Bar Association to analyze ABA Free Legal Answers. Free Legal Answers is an online legal clinic through which low-income individuals get answers to civil …

MargaretData-Driven Legal Help

Standards, Standards, Standards to advance Justice Innovation

LIST problem codes are standard ways to describe legal issues. How can you use them to make legal help better? by Margaert Hagan, this piece was originally published on Legal Design and Innovation 1. We need standard codes for legal problems. There’s lots of different words we can use to describe the same legal problem. Is this thing an unlawful …

MargaretStandards, Standards, Standards to advance Justice Innovation

Can we get legal aid websites to actually show up when people search for help?

by Margaret Hagan, originally published on Legal Design and Innovation Our Better Legal Internet project at Stanford is all about one thing: making it easier for people to get free legal help, especially online. People have life problems where legal aid might help We know more people are looking on the Internet for answers to their life problems. This includes …

MargaretCan we get legal aid websites to actually show up when people search for help?

Ontologies for lawyers

by Margaret Hagan, orignally published on Legal Design & Innovation At recent lawyer-focused hackathons and design sprints, there is a definite trend in the projects being proposed: Make ‘it’ machine-readable! Build a standardized markup or markdown language! Convert natural language to computable language! Whether it is for legislation, legal help information, or for contracts (and especially for contracts), the focus …

MargaretOntologies for lawyers