Findlaw Plays Dirty

Ask anybody in the blawgosphere about the  New York Personal Injury Law Blog and they will immediately tell you what a great job Eric Turkewitz does with his blog.  It’s one of the best known, best respected PI blawgs around.  Everyone knows that.  Everyone, apparently, except Findlaw.

As Turk found out to his amazement (though not amusement), Findlaw like the name so much that it created its own New York Personal Injury Law Blog.  It’s shabby and worthless, but that’s not surprising given that it’s not written by a lawyer, offers no insight and is merely intended as a conduit to push personal injury cases through to lawyers who pay for the privilege. 

And, surprise, surprise, when you read the “articles” that are written they have a link at the bottom with the “call to action” to contact one of the lawyers that pay FindLaw to promote and advertise for them. As it happens, I know many of those on that list, and some are friends of mine. And you can bet your last dollar that I will let them know what FindLaw is up to, and they can decide for themselves if this is the type of conduct that they approve of.

And in case you think this is of no concern to you, this isn’t the only niche specific blog that Findlaw has decided to throw against the wall.  Others include The New York Criminal Law Blog, “written” by the same non-attorney author as the other and with the same link at the bottom in the “call to action.”  Today, it’s New York. If it works, you can bet that Findlaw will put up a scam blog in your neighborhood.

These aren’t blogs, of course, in the sense that we understand them.  There are mere names designed to trade in on search engine keywords, and capitalize on Findlaw’s SEO ability to get their scam blogs higher than yours on the search engine’s first page.  Does this surprise you?  Did you think that only individual lawyers and firms could come up with the idea that if they post a blog, clients will come running and they will get fantastically rich?  Didn’t you expect to be trumped in your marketing efforts by someone bigger and badder?

But this particular effort comes with two distinct issues, both disgraceful.  First, you don’t steal someone else’s name, even if it is a really good name that you want for yourself for marketing purposes.  The Turk is a known quantity in the blawgosphere, and New York Personal Injury Law Blog is his.  That Findlaw, which has resorted to scum marketing across the board in its efforts to monetize itself, would steal Turk’s name is outrageous. 

Second, for all of you who see marketing as the only value in blawging, who buy into the total nonsense that blawg are all about bringing in clients, you’re being outflanked.  As argued numerous times, no matter how low you’re prepared to go to try to score some business, there will be someone out there who will happily sink lower.  At the moment, Findlaw is about as low as it gets.  But don’t be surprised when it goes even lower.  The race to the bottom is far from over.

Turk will no doubt demand that Findlaw change the name of its latest marketing ploy, and the blawgosphere will join together to shame Findlaw for this crap.  We’ve been under assault for a long time with lawyer marketing efforts, whether in spam comments, lying websites, or worthless marketing blogs, often scraping content from real blogs to make them appear legitimate.  You’ve got no idea the amount of work done by the backroom staff to try to stave off this marketing onslaught.  At the same time, we suffer the snake oil salesmen telling newbie lawyers that social media is the path to riches and success, assuring that the battles fought today will be repeated tomorrow when the next wave of self-promoting lawyers hits the internet.

For those of you who have placed their reputation in Findlaw’s hands, be prepared to be tainted by the company you keep.  For those of you who think that the blawgosphere is the easy road to success, you’re being played for a fool.  And for anyone who still thinks Findlaw is a fine, upstanding, legitimate entity with which to do business, meet Eric Turkewitz, the latest lawyer to get slimed by Findlaw’s scummy ways.

3 thoughts on “Findlaw Plays Dirty

  1. James Eichenberger

    After working for FindLaw for 7+ years, I couldn’t keep up with the quota (after the linkgate thing it was hard to keep selling when you found out it was ALL a lie) and they fired me.

    I have since started a small business caterring to lawyers who are just looking for a site that works. Not a site that will change their life, or be number one for “American Lawyer” ; ) just one that works.

    Bottom line for FindLaw customers: If you think they’re going to “right the ship” they will not. If you think you’re on the Titanic and it’s time to find a lifeboat….you’re right. If you think your sales rep is going to help you, they will…they will help you spend more money. Let’s stay with the boat analogy and say that is basically the anchor they throw you when you’re asking for a life preserver.

  2. A Reasonable Suspicion

    FindLaw, A Thomson Reuters Business, Copied Blog Title

    Yesterday, Marc Randazza at The Legal Satyricon asked FindLaw, a Thomson Reuters business, if it is douchetastic?  Today, Scott Greenfield at Simple Justice more directly stated that FindLaw, a Thomson Reuters business, plays dirty.  What did FindLaw, …

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