The Volokh Conspiracy

Mostly law professors | Sometimes contrarian | Often libertarian | Always independent

Having Fun with Law Review Prose

Machine-splaining academic writing


Everyone could use a laugh right now, so check out the tl;dr Papers site that transforms scholarly writing to a second-grade level for you. Originally developed to use for scientific abstracts, it works equally well for law review articles (as I discovered thanks to Prof. Chad Oldfather). Here is the abstract for my "Tinder Lies" article, transformed:

The rise of Internet dating has been a real problem for lots of people. People can use their phones to find dates, and it's easier for bad people to lie about who they really are. For example, some people lie about how old they are, or how rich they are, or even what kind of person they are.

And here is their version of "Secret Jurisdiction", my piece with Cassandra Robertson:

The government has a secret list of people who are not allowed to fly on airplanes. The government won't tell you if you're on the list, and they won't tell you why. But you can't fly on airplanes if you're on the list.