Christianah Omobosola Babajide looks at the surprising similarities
Dear first year law students…
Welcome to the exciting world of law school, where your first year on the LLB might feel a lot like browsing your favourite social media apps. Imagine this: you’re leafing through pages of land law as leaves fall outside your dorm window and you just can’t get your head around what a restrictive covenant is. Don’t fret, I’m here to enhance your understanding of contracts, the UK constitution, equity & trusts, land law and criminal law by showing you they’re not so different from the icons on your phone.
Contract law = Facebook Marketplace
Think of contract law as the Facebook Marketplace — it’s all about deals and obligations between two parties. For example, when you ordered those Yeezy’s online, you entered into a contract when you clicked ‘buy’ and the seller gave the green light. You’ll soon become used to reading the fine print and you’ll be able to spot sneaky clauses in no time. Knowing how to approach and navigate complex legal cases will also prove helpful in your personal life by helping you to understand where you stand if things go south; like purchasing a “brand new” item that turns out to be used. If this ever happens to you, it’s time to put on your future-lawyer-hat, dig out that purchase protection policy and show them who they’re messing with!
Criminal law = WhatsApp
Criminal law, like WhatsApp, is all about setting boundaries and safeguarding your personal space. Imagine this: you open WhatsApp, and the guy from the club last night is bombarding you with messages. Now, think of the legal case Ferguson v British Gas Trading Ltd, where Ferguson received a barrage of bills and letters from British Gas for eight months despite switching suppliers. She accused British Gas of harassment; a criminal offense under the Harassment Act 1997, and sought damages for anxiety and financial loss. In both cases boundaries and privacy matter. Just as WhatsApp’s private messaging protects your personal space, criminal law ensures no one can harass or intimidate you without facing legal consequences.
Constitutional and administrative law = X (formerly Twitter)
Con & ad is how things are governed in the public domain. Just as the timeline on X buzzes with debates and arguments on the latest Netflix show, con & ad outlines the rules that shape our society. For example, the rule of law, a concept that you will be taught, means that everyone is equal under the law, regardless of their status, power, or wealth. Similarly, X is a free platform where you can find and interact with people from all walks of life, from politicians to university students. On X, nobody’s opinion is superior; everyone has 280 characters to express their views or engage in discussions.
Land law = YouTube
Land law and YouTube may appear unrelated, but they share hidden parallels when it comes to property rights. In land law, you’ll explore how land is used and provided, similar to how YouTube stores vlogs and tutorials. Land law looks at how landowners can use their property or moderate others’ usage and YouTube deals with the ownership of content uploaded by YouTubers. While land law deals with tangible land and property rights, YouTube mirrors these property rights concerns in the digital sphere. Next time your favourite Lawfluencer uploads a GRWM vlog, ask yourself: who truly owns that video, is it them or YouTube?
Equity & Trusts = Venmo
While they may seem worlds apart, equity and Venmo share a common thread — the bedrock of trust. Equity is all about fairness and trustworthiness – it’s like the guardian angel that ensures that individuals are treated justly. On the other hand, Venmo takes trust to a digital dimension; it focuses on financial transactions that enable users to seamlessly send and receive money electronically. It’s like having a virtual wallet in your back pocket; it’s there to help you split the bill with friends at Nando’s or make quick and secure money transfers. So next time when your lecturer is teaching you about fiduciary duties, remember that the underlying principle is the same with Venmo — trust is the glue that holds it all together.
So, there you have it, your first-year modules on the LLB — hopefully now that they’ve been repackaged as the familiar social media platforms, the concepts will be easier to grasp.
Enjoy your first month of term; it will be over before you know it but will undoubtedly be an autumn full of legal adventures. In between working hard (or hardly working), don’t forget to participate in the banter on the Legal Cheek’s comments section and enjoy the legal arguments on X.
Remember, just like your favourite apps, the world of law can also be fun and full of surprises.
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Christianah Omobosola Babajide works in legal marketing at a leading barristers’ chambers in Central London. She has a degree in law and over five years of legal writing experience.