Social media for lawyers and ethics issues continue to undergo scrutiny, change and evolution. John Schwartz of The New York Times shares: Legal Battle: Online Attitude vs. Rules of the Bar.
In his Sept. 13 article, Schwartz shares Florida attorney Sean Conway’s story where Conway posted an “intemperate blog post” stating that Judge Cheryl Aleman was an “Evil, Unfair Witch.”
Schwartz’s article is excellent and should be required reading in every law firm. He shares insight and information about some of the more egregious misuses of social media that affect the legal profession.
Suffice it to say that I’m not going to reiterate what Schwartz covered here. Rather – here are a few tips:
1. Every corporation, let alone law firm, should adopt a social media policy – large or small.
2. It is important to understand that what you say online is no different than saying it in the middle of Times Square on a loud speaker and having every national television network broadcast it live!
3. If you are not bold enough to walk into a courtroom and call a judge an “evil, unfair witch,” then please don’t try to hide behind the translucent veil of social media.
It never ceases to amaze me how green highly educated professionals can be when it comes to online communications down to “status updates” that report: “I’m having a bad day,” “This jury really doesn’t get it,” “I hate my job,” “My boss is an idiot,” or “Court is so slow.”
Bottom line: If you wouldn’t say it publically it is better left unsaid.
Gina F. Rubel, is the owner of Furia Rubel Communications, Inc., a public relations and marketing agency with a niche in legal communications. A former Philadelphia trial attorney and public relations expert, Gina is the author of Everyday Public Relations for Lawyers and the co-author of 6 Essentials for Success in Business and Life. Gina and her PR firm have won numerous awards for legal communications, public relations, media relations, strategic planning, corporate philanthropy and leadership. She maintains a blog at www.ThePRLawyer.com and is a regular contributor to The Legal Intelligencer Blog. You can find her on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/ginafuriarubel or follow her on Twitter at http://twitter.com/ginarubel. For more information, go to www.FuriaRubel.com.