I haven't been here for a couple weeks. Well, I've been here, just not here. I've been reading, commenting on other blogs, reading other comments on other blogs about me, getting a little depressed about the oil disaster, and then I came to this conclusion:
People think they can tell a lot about a lawyer from a blog.
For example, I read this about me on another blog:
I'm pretty sure Tannenbaum, someone this click of CDL bloggers all seem to like very much, is not someone I'd ever recommend and that opinion is also based entirely on his writing, which tends to be shallow and reeks of self-promotion
The commenter was at least honest - he would not recommend me as a lawyer for a client solely based on my blog posts. It's a risk I take. I'm sure there are more out there that think I'm a complete jerk, based only on my blog posts.
This commenter believes I am what I blog. He's partially right. Those that know me say they "can hear me" through my writing. There's a pretty common thread in all my writing. I don't like whiners, or people who got into law because they thought it entitled them to money. I don't have time for social media "experts" who just couldn't hack it in law or anything else and lie about their backgrounds. I don't like those consultants out there that have no success to speak of, and are only in business to take advantage of broke young lawyers, and I despise stupidity.
But there's a lot more to know - stuff I don't discuss for whatever reason. If I was truly a self-promoter here, I would have a different style of writing, or hire someone to write for me. I would be much better off blogging about Bar Rules all the time as far as Google is concerned. Instead, I just say what comes to my mind. I know that's a foreign concept for the marketing lawyers
But this is my outlet. Have I been hired because of this blog? Partially. I do real work for real clients who, even though they may find out about me here, still have to contact me. Some may do so and think I'm not the right lawyer for them. Some may call and be surprised that I don't jump down their throat. Then again, some lawyers blog and appear real nice and sweet, but aren't.
One thing I'll never get over is how every blogger I meet is either taller or shorter than I thought.
But I digress.
Only those I've actually spoken to, privately e-mailed with, or better, met in person, can truly say they know me - and that goes for everyone else out there. Sure, if you're a serial liar, or resume puffer on your website, I don't need to go further. But just because you write a blog, one shouldn't make the leap that this is who you really are.
Until you've spoken to someone, seen them with their kids, heard their philosophies on issues other than what they blog about, or spoken to others about them, a judgment based on a blog is worthless. It's worse than judging a book by its cover, it's like judging a library based on one book.
My friend who commented above just doesn't like me. He doesn't like me "based entirely" on my writing, and because of my writing, he's not recommending me to any clients. I can imagine the conversation:
I need a lawyer in Miami. I was given Brian Tannebaum's name.
Oh, don't hire him. Have you read his blog? He admitted to making a mistake in a case.
"But this recommendation was from a former client who seemed pretty happy.
I don't care what he did for a client, I read his blog.
Yeah, silly. But hey, decisions are made for lots of different reasons.
Making a decision to hire a lawyer is one that is much more important than a collection of blog posts, at least to lawyers who value that decision.
Whether you are hiring a lawyer because of a blog, or not, you're making a huge mistake.
I know, I've made them.
Located in Miami, Florida, Brian Tannebaum practices Bar Admission and Discipline and Criminal Defense. He is the author of I Got A Bar Complaint.