Social Media: New Addendum to Our Engagement Agreement

May 9, 2012

Here’s your free legal advice for the day.

It’s come to my attention that many don’t understand the devastating effects that social media posts can inflict upon a criminal or civil matter. Only today, I saw someone who’s currently involved in litigation post something on Facebook that would make opposing counsel squee with delight.

So I’ve decided to add a Social Media Clause to my engagement agreements. This is still a work in progress, but I hope it gets the point across.

SOCIAL MEDIA.

While your case is active, do not use social media.

Don’t. Period. This includes everything from Facebook, to Twitter, to Instagram, to blogging β€” even if you’re β€œanonymous” or doing so under a pseudonym. We are not joking.

The opposing side will be able to find anything you post and will use it against you. You should pretend that anything you post will end up on the front page of the newspaper. We may fire you as a client if you do not follow this rule.

Finally, don’t ever send us confidential information over social media. Social media is never confidential!Β 


I am Bad at Making Friends — Rachel Rodgers blocked me on Twitter

February 2, 2012

Rachel Rodgers managed to astonish me again tonight by writingΒ this article. Β In her article, she tells lawyers to “ABC” or “always be closing.” Seriously.

Please excuse that smell, it’s vomit in the back of my mouth.

According to Rachel, attorneys should:

Get a whiteboard and write down how much revenue you want to make this quarter. (Go ahead. I’ll wait).Β  Under your goal number, write down how much you’ve made so far this quarter and subtract it from your goal number. The new total is how much you have left to make. Be sure to include the date every time you update the board – it adds a sense of urgency. Now every time you get paid, deduct the amount of revenue to date from your goal number. Β By doing this you will have the exact number you need to make staring you in the face everyday.

In other words, don’t worry about what type of legal services are appropriate for your clients. Β Worry about how much money you need to make. Charge accordingly.

I mean, who cares what your clients need, right? Β It’s all about making money.

Sounds like a great idea, except for one problem. Β As a lawyer, we are a fiduciary for our clients. Β According to Wikipedia:

A fiduciary dutyΒ is the highest standard of careΒ at either equity or law. A fiduciary (abbreviationΒ fid) is expected to be extremely loyal to the person to whom he owes the duty (the “principal”): he must not put his personal interests before the duty, and must not profit from his position as a fiduciary, unless the principal consents.

In other words, a lawyer has a duty to not to view clients as a “mark” or a “lead”. Β However, in the comment section, Rachel states:

If you feel like your services aren’t valuable or lack confidence, that can be a barrier to effectively closing leads.

…closing leads? Β Sometimes a client might not need your services. Β Sometimes they are better off saving their money.Β And it’s our duty to tell them that. However, according to Rachel Rodgers:

I would give away the milk, which meant that very few potential clients were buying the cow. Even worse, I didn’t clearly express to my prospective clients what the cow was and why it was worth my fees to get it. I had no idea what the hell I was doing and was quite perturbed that many of these prospects weren’t becoming paying clients.

This begs the question — Rachel, are you a fiduciary, or are you just interested in making a few bucks…?

Inquiring minds want to know.


Fishtown in the Wall Street Journal – Whoda Thunk?

January 21, 2012

Fishtown Market, a la Google Maps.

For what it’s worth, our neighborhood was compared to Boston’s Belmont in a recent WSJ article titled: “The New American Divide.

Bizarre seeing us compared to upperclass neighborhoods in both Boston and right on the Main Line too.

Not the mention that there’s a great shot of Fishtown Market in the article.