Happy Trails, Geoff.

I seriously doubt that any of you who read my blog do not read Geoff’s.  But in case you don’t, Kiwi Mediator and blogger extraordinaire Geoff Sharp is stepping down from his mediation blog, mediator blah…blah.

Geoff’s blog was one of the first I found as I was researching whether and how to dive into the mediation blogosphere.  I will definitely miss his informative, yet very entertaining, self-deprecating style.

Quite ironically, he was the first to try to talk me out of quitting blogging back in May.

Geoff’s posts will be missed and I wish him the best in whatever new challenges and family matters that are pulling him in different directions.

Is it really “clear”?

The anonymous “NJmediator” writes today,

“Clearly, as a mediator, I cannot believe that legal confrontation will lead to the best outcome, for either party.”

Is it really that clear?  Does being a mediator permanently and mutually exclude you from believing that sometimes, a “legal confrontation” is both necessary and essential to reaching the “best outcome”?

As a mediator, I believe that many (and possibly, the vast majority of) cases could be better resolved by communication, cooperation, and compromise. But I also understand the need for the adversarial legal system. Sometimes a party must fight to protect their legal rights. Sometimes compromise does not satisfy a party’s needs.

I understand njmediator’s sentiment, and it would appear from perusing the site that this opinion stems from njmediator’s family law focus; but I am not certain that I can make that jump that all litigation is bad and all mediation is good.

Jeff Krivis’ Excellent New(ish) Blog.

I recently found Mediator Jeff Krivis’s new(ish) blog [Not to be confused with a Jewish blog].   Jeff has been a mediator in Southern California for almost 20 years and is a recognized leader in the field of mediation and negoiation.  I look forward to some great posts on negotiation, mediation and other ADR news.

Does how write betray our gender (biases)?

Apparently so, says GenderAnalyzer.com.  Just plug in your blog’s URL and their “artificial intelligence” will determine whether your blog was written by a man or a woman.  According to them, there is a 63% chance that my blog is written by a man.  Quite amazing actually, since I do shave my legs*, which make up about 34% of my body….

Plug in your favorite dispute resolution blog.  You may be surprised by some of the results.

Read more after the jump.

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Mediation Tips for the Practitioner from a Savvy Plaintiff’s Attorney

Vickie Pynchon is taking a break from blogging while campaigning for one of the Presidential candidates.  In the meantime, she has asked some guest bloggers to post content.  On Tuesday, Brian Herrington, a plaintiff’s lawyer from Mississippi offered some useful tips on preparing for mediation from a practitioner’s perspective.

After a mediation fell apart on Tuesday because the ultimate decision maker did not attend and was not privy to the discussions necessary to allow him to make an informed decision, I could not agree more with Brian’s assertion, “Make sure the money person is there.” Brian states that he

will no longer attend a mediation unless the individual authorized to write the settlement check is present.   None of this, “We have to get on the phone and see what corporate says” for me. You do not want to mediate with defense counsel only.

Good stuff in Vickie’s absence.