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Personal injury law blogs : Where's the pride?

October 31, 2010

A blog post this last week from Attorney Peter Thompson’s Maine Injury Lawyer Blog:

Reported in the Portland Press Herald, October 22, 2010

HARRISON — Police in Harrison, Maine, say one teenager has been killed and three other people injured in a car crash.

Eighteen-year-old (I’ve deleted name included by Thompson), of Oxford, was a passenger in a Chevrolet Trailblazer whose driver lost control rounding a corner and crashed into trees.

McLendon, who was in the back seat, died at the scene. A second passenger, 20-year-old Jacob Hill, of Waterford, was hospitalized with life-threatening injuries. Another passenger and the driver, a girl whose name wasn’t released, were hospitalized with serious injuries.

The auto accident specialists at Peter Thompson & Associates have handled thousands of similar claims and recovered millions of dollars in compensation for our clients. We specialize in providing excellent customer service and quick results. For more information, contact Peter Thompson & Associates at 1-800-917-1784 or read more on our website on our car accident practice page.

Gee Pete, that blog post must have taken some deep thought on your part. Borrowing the name of an eighteen year old who was tragically killed because someone told you if you scrapped stories from newspapers for your blog that your website and blog will come up higher in the search engines.

I wonder how this recent high school grad’s parents feel about what you’re doing Pete. But what do you care? You’re just a personal injury lawyer out to make a buck.

Not to be outdone, Attorney Gregory Baumgartner penned ‘Truck Driver Killed in Fire’ on his Texas Truck Wreck Attorney Blog.

Baumgartner, or someone on his behalf, paraphrases an Austin American-Statesman newspaper article about a truck driver killed in an accident adding the following paragraph to conclude his blog post:

Greg Baumgartner is a Texas truck accident lawyer and the founder of the Baumgartner law firm, which is dedicated to helping injury victims seek civil justice. For a free- no obligation consultation with a Texas semi truck accident lawyer call the Baumgartner firm.

In addition to be being schooled on paraphrasing truck accident stories, Greg has learned to link the phrase ‘Texas semi truck accident lawyer’ in his blog post to his website so as to improve the search engine results of his website.

Where’s the pride in being a lawyer? Where’s the pride in serving legal professions as a provider of law firm website and blog solutions?

I’ve personally been on both sides of this equation. I was a plaintiff’s trial lawyer representing injury victims and their family members for 17 years. I proudly served as a board member of my state’s trial lawyers association and as a sustaining member of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America (now ‘American Association for Justice’).

I used the Internet as a plaintiff’s trial lawyer for almost three years (’96 to ’98) as a means of client development. I answered questions of injury victims, injured employees, and distressed employees on AOL. Not knowing a thing about Internet marketing, people liked what I was doing to help them and similarly situated people. As a result, work came.

In 1999 I left the practice of law to begin helping lawyers connect with clients and prospective clients via the Internet in a real and meaningful way. First with a virtual law community that upon being sold to LexisNexis has been incorporated into Then with LexBlog to provide lawyers a more effective means to network through the Internet so as to build more intimate relationships with clients and prospective clients and enhance their reputation as an authority.

I don’t share this to impress you, but to impress upon you that there is a better way to obtain work as a plaintiff’s personal injury lawyer. And that it’s well within your reach. As a lawyer — and as legal website and blog solution provider.

I’ve screwed up now and again as a much as the next guy. But on giving lawyers a bad name, I’m doing my best that it that does not happen when it comes to the Internet.

We’ll not have blogs like the above personal injury law blogs on The LexBlog Network. And I’ll continue to call out such lawyers now and again in an effort to get such lawyers to change their behavior for the good of our legal profession.

I’m asking you to join me as a lawyer to steer clear of less than reputable Internet marketing. I’m asking you as legal marketing professionals and website/blog developers not to condone such behavior of your client lawyers. You need not enable such behavior.

Let’s stop tasteless and unprofessional legal marketing. For the good of our legal profession. And for the public we have chosen to serve as lawyers.

Can I count on you?