A Social Media Victory for Lawyers


Lawyers' Use of Social Media

We have previously expressed concern about regulating lawyers' use of social media. It is one thing to regulate for truth and fairness in promotional statements, and to restrict hyperbole so as not to create false expectations. It is another thing to say how the communication can be framed. Bar associations seek to regulate lawyers in ways that other governing bodies do not attempt for such professionals as doctors and accountants. The losers are small firms and sole practitioners - and those clients who would benefit from learning about them through social media.

Regulation of Lawyers' Blogs -

One of the most troubling aspects of over-regulation is one we've written about previously. The Virginia State Bar in 2011 charged a lawyer with professional misconduct for talking about his own completed cases on his blog without adding an advertising disclaimer that results depend upon factors unique to each case and that results in one case do not predict similar results in others. The lawyer argued his blog consisted of news and commentary, that the information he posted was disclosed during public trials, was accurate, did not violate any confidences - and was not advertising. The State Bar disagreed, and the lawyer reluctantly posted the disclaimer.

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Ed Poll

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