Westlaw seems better-suited for larger law firms or attorneys who need more comprehensive databases with access to secondary sources. Even that recommendation, of course, is based on the assumption that those larger firms and lawyers have a sizeable legal research budget. You will pay handsomely for Westlaw’s luxuries. You can speak with a representative, however, they can be pushy and will definitely put you on a series of marketing lists.
if one tries to find a source or a database, the results appear as “autopopulation.” I never thought of autopopulation as a “result,” but as merely something that tries to help the user get what he or she wants more quickly. Nothing in the training or documentation indicates this fact.
Another HUGE problem is that the natural language search in Westlaw Classic can quickly and easily find things that the new WLN search algorithm may never find. This means that the user is unlikely to find something in a footnote that may be exactly what one is looking for. (WLC natural language will put this at the top of the search results; WLN may NEVER have it show up as a result.)
WLN is the classic case of the programmers fixing something that was not broken. They Amazoned the search results–giving you all sorts of junk you don’t need to see. They Googled the search results–basing the results on the number of times someone else has tried to find something. But worst of all, they Microsofted the search results. They don’t let the user search the way he or she wants to; instead the user is FORCED to conduct the search the way that Westlaw Next allows you to do so. (This is exactly they way in which most Microsoft programs work; you are forced to do it the Microsoft way, not how you may want to do it.)
WLN will improve the research of lawyers who graduated from the blink monkey school of legal research. (Even a blind monkey can find a peanut every once in a while.)
For people who know what they are doing when they do legal research, WLN basically gets in the way rather than speeding up things. Review collected by and hosted on G2.com.