Linkedin Recommendations for Lawyers

This post on Above the Law discusses whether it is appropriate for Lawyers to utilize Linkedin because of the restrictions various State Bars have on client or attorney recommendations.  These rules were originally developed to prevent misleading potential clients that the attorney would be able to get them the same results as the person giving the testimonial received.   Another article discussing lawyers using social media and how it is impacted by rules on advertising can be found at SoloPracticeUniversity. It is interesting to compare the two articles because one is focused on large firms and the other on small, yet both advocate the use of social media to promote your law practice.

I know as a law student I am working to build my presence on Linkedin, as well as, through this blog. Fortunately, since I am not yet a licensed attorney, I have more leeway in brand promotion and hope that future employers will be positively swayed by the recommendations I have received for past work.

As social media continues to change privacy expectations and the way in which we all interrelate, I am sure that the rules governing attorneys use of social media will continue to change as well.  I think many of the same concerns that apply to the Legal Profession, apply to recommendations for all goods and services.

The recent rules published and then revised by the FTC in regards to bloggers disclosing their relationship with the manufacturer or provider of the good or service they are blogging about is a great example of this overlap. It shows an ongoing effort to create transparency in these relationships, so the reader can properly evaluate any potential bias on the part of the recommender.

When done properly I think social media is a great resource for law students and lawyers alike to promote their abilities and recommendations are an important part of those tools.  They can help the reader gauge the credibility of the poster.  Perhaps another day I will write about the pros/cons of curated recommendations for business on sites such as yelp and how that affects the credibility of those comments.

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