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Expert Forum

The ACS Expert Forum welcomes blog ideas from all our friends and colleagues in the progressive and legal communities. If you would like to write a blog post for Expert Forum, please submit a short summary of your idea (pitch) and a member of the ACS editorial team will get in touch with you.

Please submit your pitch to including:

  • The topic of the blog
  • Your main messages/points/arguments
  • The ideal timing for publication (note any external events we should know about)
  • Your title or affiliation, social media handles, and your relationship/experience with ACS

For more information on Expert Forum guidelines, click here.

Notice and Comment

Submitting a comment for a federal or state notice of proposed rulemaking is one of the simplest and essential ways for the public to participate in the rulemaking process ACS’s Notice and Comment initiative identifies opportunities to comment on key regulations put forth by federal and state agencies. ACS monitors the federal register for notices of proposed regulatory changes and highlights select opportunities that may be of interest to our members. Go to Notice and Comment page.



An op-ed is an opinion piece by a guest writer that discusses important issues. They are a great way for ACS members and others to influence public debates about important legal and constitutional issues. Here are some tips for writing and publishing influential op-eds:

Dublin, Ireland – May 28, 2016: Woman shouting via megaphone to protest housing crisis in Ireland.
  • Be strategic: Before you start writing, take a minute to clarify who is your target, and what you want them to do.
  • Be timely: Move quickly if your opinion piece is in response to a news event like a court decision or an ongoing policy debate.
  • Be unique: Editors don’t want to see something they’re running appear in a competing paper or website. Submit your op-ed one outlet at a time, sending to a second or third or fourth only after one passes.
  • Be provocative: News outlets want to stir minds on their opinion pages. Give them a reason to select your piece for publication.
  • Be concise: While maximum op-ed lengths vary by newspaper, most generally range around 600 to 750 words. Look online or call for their guidelines. Use straight talk. Avoid jargon, and clichés.
  • Be connected: News outlets are more likely to give you space if your piece is connected to the community or to the readership they serve.
  • Be credible: A good rule of thumb is 20 percent argument and 80 percent supporting information.

<!–to be considered laterA case comment is a review and critiques of a decision in a particular case that includes your own original analysis of the case. Below are some tips for commenting a case in a publication.

Supreme Court building in Washington DC. Equal Justice Under Law.

Introduction: Describe the subject of the case in specific and precise terms. State whatever facts were essential to the issue being resolved. Summarize the procedural status of the case, then the court’s holding.

History: Review the development of the law leading up to this case, including statutes, important court decisions, and any previous major cases dealing with the specific issue involved.

The Court’s Decision: Review the court’s holding and its rationale, along with significant concurring or dissenting opinions. Track the court’s reasoning and logical sequence — but don’t discuss other issues addressed by the court that are unrelated or peripheral to the issue you are focusing on, or concurrences or dissents on other questions of law.

Author’s Analysis: Critically evaluate the court’s holding and rationale. Conclude whether the court was right or wrong, addressing relevant counterarguments. Explain if it departed from accepted authority, and/or selectively relied on the evidence presented, Assess whether its reasoning was correct or faulty (even if you think the decision was correct). Don’t just mimic the court’s opinion or a dissent or concurrence. Explain the impact of the case’s holding on the relevant area of the law, and suggest your own approach to this area of law.

You must support your assertions through logical argument and (properly cited) reference to relevant cases and other sources. Read more from the following sources:

How To Write a Case Comment (Georgetown Law)
Case Comment Format (Washington University Law)–>