GPSSF-Speaker Spotlight and Technology Tip: Ethan Wall

    January 23, 2015

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    Speaker Spotlight and Technology Tip: Ethan Wall. The One Question You Must Ask Yourself Before Logging Into Facebook.

     

    Social media attorney, author, professor and keynote speaker Ethan Wall of Social Media Law and Order is a speaker at this week’s Wild, Wild Tech conference. Wall will teach you how The Florida Bar ethics rules apply to attorney social media marketing and blogs. You’ll learn about the actual rules of professional conduct, advertising guidelines, and real life ethics opinions apply to your personal and professional use.

    Nearly everyone is on at least one social media site these days. Let’s face it: You’re probably on one right now. Whether your computers, iPhone or tablet, you’ve likely connected, communicated or interacted with someone online for personal or professional use. You’ve also spent time telling the world about who you are, what you do, and shared interesting things about your life. Some of your online friends may be other lawyers. Some may be current or past clients. Others may be people you’ve met along the way. All this connecting is great. But before you upload one more post, add one more friend, or share another tweet, I want you to stop. Right this moment. And ask yourself this question:

    Am I absolutely sure that my social media profiles and communications comply with each and every bar ethics rule, including those relating to advertising, solicitation, and permissible friendships?

    Okay. Now don’t freak out. If you’re feeling that pit of uncertainty in your stomach, you’re not alone. Most attorneys don’t know whether their personal profiles need to comply with advertising rules. Others haven’t asked themselves that question or dug deep down into which rules apply to their online interactions. To help ease your pain, here are three great tips:

    1. Ensure that your social media profile complies with your jurisdiction’s ethical rules.As a general rule, social media profiles that are used in any way to promote a lawyer or law firm’s practice are subject to the lawyer advertising rules. Attorney social media profiles pages must therefore comply with all the advertising ethics rules in their jurisdiction, including prohibitions against any misleading information, references to past results, promises of results and testimonials and statements characterizing the quality of legal services. If you are unsure which rules apply, don’t worry. Here’s where to start.
    2. The Florida Bar has published guidelines for social networking sites.The Florida Bar Social Networking Guidewill teach you important lessons like how past results must be objectively verifiable, how predictions or guaranties of results are prohibited and that testimonials that fail to comply with the requirements of the applicable rules will cause serious problems. The guide also advises attorneys should also avoid statements characterizing skills, experience, reputation or record unless they are objectively verifiable. If you still need more help after digesting this information, you’re in luck.
    3. Learn about how the Florida Bar ethics rules apply to attorney social media marketing at the GPSSF Wild, Wild Tech Conference.Social media attorney, author, professor, and keynote speaker Ethan Wall of Social Media Law and Order will teach you about how The Florida Bar ethics rules apply to attorney social media marketing and blogs. You’ll learn about the actual rules of professional conduct, advertising guidelines, and real life ethics opinions apply to your personal and professional use. You’ll leave the session with a much clearer understanding of whether your social media profiles comply with the rules and how to remain compliant in this ever-changing area.

    So it’s okay to exhale now. Things are going to be fine. See you on social media.

    Social media attorney, author, professor and keynote speaker Ethan Wall of Social Media Law and Order is a speaker at this week’s Wild, Wild Tech conference. Wall will teach you how The Florida Bar ethics rules apply to attorney social media marketing and blogs. You’ll learn how the actual rules of professional conduct, advertising guidelines and real life ethics opinions apply to your personal and professional use. An international speaker on the effects of social media on the law, Wall founded Social Media Law and Order to pursue his passion for educating, consulting and training users on all areas of social media and the law after practicing social media, Internet, and intellectual property law for seven years at a prestigious law firm. Wall has authored three books including Fire over Facebook: A Primer on Protected Social Media Activity in the Workplace and Best Practice Guide for Managing Employee Social Media Use, and the Social Media Guide for Lawyers, a legal guide on Ethan also developed the Social Media Law and Order blog to chronicle the effects of Facebook, Twitter, and other social media on the law. High profile news organizations, including CNN, NPR, and Thomson Reuters have turned to Wall for commentaries on social media legal issues.


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