A few of you have asked why my podcast page isn’t free. As I said in my welcome video, I will still continue posting on Facebook and Twitter and that is obviously free. But I’ll be doing so much more on the podcast page that takes a lot of time and costs money. When I tape a podcast, I have to pay for the site use (technical support, customer service, etc.) and pay a producer to clean up my recording (take out my coughs, “ums,” background noises, etc. [although since I record at home I’ve noticed that he can’t get rid of all the noises because sometimes the dog barks or my wife slams a door in the background—pretty sure I can train the dog, though]). It’s going to get even more complicated, and fun, as soon as I’m able to take calls and do live chat.So that almost everyone who wanted to could afford it, I made membership about the cost of buying a specialty coffee at Starbucks once a month (although please don’t buy me one because I don’t drink coffee). Membership is just $4.99 per month for this exclusive access. Ask any of the members who posted on Facebook or Twitter if they don’t think they’re getting much more than their money’s worth for less than $5 a month. And in addition to posting about it for those who are slow in checking their emails, members get direct emails notifying them that I’ve posted new content to the site so they can view it or listen to it at their leisure. Or telling them that I’ll be in town next week and will be available if they’d like to come by and say “Hi.”I’m really excited about this new project and the members who have joined seem happy with the meager investment. If it’s not for you, I understand. But for those who are interested, I think once you try it you’ll agree that under $5 a month is a bargain for all you get. Try it for one month. If you don’t agree, you can cancel at any time.I’m providing members with audio recordings that average 30 minutes, and will be adding videos and other content including:

Behind the scene pictures, video and commentary – What kinds of conversations occur at “sidebar” between the attorneys and the judge? What occurs behind the scenes of a court show? Are there “two types of justice,” one for the rich and one for the poor? How can you seat an impartial jury in a case everyone has heard about? In addition, I will post pictures and videos of my activities that aren’t posted on Twitter and Facebook.

Legal questions – I answer legal questions from our members. The number of questions depends on their complexity because some simply require a short explanation while others are much more time consuming. I can’t give legal advice because I’m not your lawyer but I can answer your legal questions in an educational sense, tell you what you might be able to do in your state; where you may be able to turn for help; what kinds of things I would consider if I were the judge in the case; answer questions about hot topic cases and things like that.

Live chat – I am looking into how I can set up a “live chat” so that I can chat with members on the site in real time.

Meet and greet – When I travel to a city (for legal commentary, a meeting, speaking engagement, etc.) I invite members to join me for a meet and greet at a particular location. I’m happy to take pictures or sign autographs if you like, or just kick back and talk. This, of course, is subject to my schedule permitting but it isn’t generally a problem. For example, I’m in Chicago this week.

GavelQuest Revived –My wife, who is an artist, made one-of-a-kind ceramic gavels; each one was individually numbered and signed by me. Some of the fans of the “Judge Alex” show won them by answering questions about the previous day’s episode. These were truly unique pieces of art and the fans of the show really loved them. She is currently making more of them and they will be randomly awarded every so often to members (I’m thinking every 60 days but it’s subject to my wife’s mood and health [mainly mood]).

Discounted Speaking Fees – I’m a professional speaker. Whether it’s a keynote address at a commencement ceremony, a motivational speech to high school, college or law school, or speaking to a business group or organization, I’m always delighted to travel across the US to give a speech. Members receive a 25% discount from my usual fees for speaking engagements.

Commentary – such as analysis of high profile cases or legal matters in the news; explanations of legal principles and why certain laws exist, should exist or shouldn’t exist; why there are rules of evidence and would we be better off without some of them; the constitutionality or unconstitutionality of certain laws; what the concept of “beyond a reasonable doubt” really means; why it takes so long to carry out a death sentence; the war between the legislative, executive and judicial branches of our government; the justification or lack of justification for certain police actions; common scams and how to avoid them; and many other subjects of interest. In addition to tackling these topics on my own, I expect to have segments with attorneys and other experts in the particular fields being discussed. Eventually, when doing an audio or video commentary, I hope to be able to arrange it so that I can take live calls from those who want to discuss a particular topic. This allows me to explain the law in a way that I can’t on a 3 minute TV appearance.