Jeremy's Weblog

I recently graduated from Harvard Law School. This is my weblog. It tries to be funny. E-mail me if you like it. For an index of what's lurking in the archives, sorted by category, click here.

Tuesday, April 20, 2004

Wexis Training

"Thanks for coming to Wexis training, even though your firm is forcing you. I'm a relentlessly happy woman earning a substandard salary in a soul-numbing job that involves spending my entire workweek demonstrating how to search for stuff in an electronic database, with my only joy coming in the pleasure on students' faces when I give them free Wexis points that they can redeem for booze and hookers. You, checking your e-mail, here's 100 points just for smiling. Thanks.

As a reward for attending this Wexis training session, you have your choice of a Wexis t-shirt, coffee mug, set of pillowcases, money clip, or pet sterilization device. Please indicate your choice by logging into your account, clicking on the bright green button, scrolling down to the row labeled "Wexis is God. God is Wexis," and selecting your choice. While you ponder the options, I will be passing around a brochure, entitled, "Decoding the Wexis pricing plan in such a way that your firm thinks you're really efficient but Wexis gets to buy another island in the Caribbean."

I can see with my magic Wexis x-ray glasses that you're all selected your choice. Here's twenty more points for each of you. They're like crack. Now I'd like you all to click on preferences, and repeat after me: "I prefer Wexis. I prefer Wexis." You'll notice a line that asks whether you'd like to choose "time billing" or "transactional billing." Right now, as we bait the hook and reel you in, everything is free. But once you?re at a firm, everything costs a lot of money, because the marginal cost of database access is tremendous.

And while it's true that most firms pay a flat rate larger than the nation's GDP to have unlimited access to Wexis, they pass those costs to their clients with a substantial markup, so it's important to bill for as many searches as possible. Except that some clients are naughty boys and girls and they read their bills carefully and get mad when the charges are too high. Wexis wishes those clients would disappear, and is working on a Wexis client disappearing tool that you will soon be able to buy for just a few hundred Wexis points. The key, therefore, is billing as much as possible up until the point where the clients won't pay. It's like The Price is Right: find the highest cost without going over. And everything in today's Showcase Showdown is available using Wexis points. You, with the scowl on your face, here's 100 Wexis points just for not strangling me. Thanks.

We're going to start the search by clicking on "Find Some Crap," which is the red button fourteenth from the left. Clicking on this button will cost $87.50. Click twenty-one times. Now. Great. You, with your pants around your ankles, here's a hundred Wexis points just because I think you're neat. Thanks. Searching in the largest database, "All Cases, Ever," will cost $4,537 per search. But you can save your firm money by choosing a narrower database. Searching in "Justice Thompson's cases from last Wednesday? will only cost $2,719. See, a comparative bargain!
You can use "Search Destroyer" to add irrelevant terms to your search query and bring back fewer results for you to wade through in search of the applicable law. Also try "Restrict at Random" to get a sampling of cases which may or may not be useful. Clicking on "Can't Focus" will make the screen wobble back and forth, simulating how you would feel if you were me, conducting hundreds of legal searches each day, and receiving a salary entirely in Wexis points.

Clicking on "Key Search" will let you find the narrow area of the law that your topic may fall into, by 32-digit code number. Clicking on "Key Lime" will make a pie come out of your speakers. Clicking on "Key West" will enter you in the Wexis "Trip to Florida" contest. Under the "Shred A Document" tab, you will be able to remove cases from our database so your fellow summer associates won't be able to find them and you'll pass them on the firm's ranking charts, which are available on Wexis for an additional fee. You, with the facial moles, here's 100 Wexis points so you can try to get that fixed.

Clicking on "Live Support" will put you in touch with a Wexis representative, who is available for free research consultations, or, at a cost of $4.95/minute, massage with release. She will also have the code for the secret Lexis porn database, searchable by keyword, gender, or illegality by jurisdiction.

Finally, click on "History" to read the inspiring story of a legal researcher who woke up one morning and decided to start making monopoly profits by putting every published opinion on the Internet and charging obscene amounts for access. You can print his story for later enjoyment, at the standard rate of $3/line. That's also how much cocaine costs, subsidized with a portion of your Wexis points.

I'm glad to have had the chance to talk to you today about Wexis, the greatest thing ever. Enjoy your summers!"