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Friday, 11 May 2012

The Power of the Tweet (2)

We talked earlier in the week about the impact of Twitter and its influence as a means of immediate and widespread communication.

Last year I was a t conference where the BBC’s Legal Expert Joshua Rozenberg was speaking. He made an interesting point about changes in the practice of Law which I immediately tweeted including a mention of @JoshuaRozenberg. To my surprise and alarm he immediately told the conference that I had just tweeted what he had said! (The power of having your notes on an iPad!!).

An extension of this has been its use in presenting live updates in what used to be entirely remote areas. Such as court proceedings –

In fact the UK Supreme Court - the highest court in the land - now has its own twitter account - @SupremeCourtUK.

Twitter was my main source of news on the passage of the recent Legal Aid Bill through the House of Lords.

Today we read of a surgeon in the USA tweeting his way through brain surgery. Dr Dong Kim told the Guardian –

"Social media is a powerful vehicle to help demystify brain surgery, a source of much fascination to people. We think that by providing this up-close glimpse of the OR, we can educate the public, particularly future patients, about what happens during brain surgery, about what to expect."

Mind you I think I'd rather my surgeon  remained focussed on the job in hand.

It is as if social media is democratising the world. Doors to knowledge are being opened in a way that would have been unheard of even 5 – 10 years. It will be interesting to see where this takes us in the next 5 – 10 years.

In my profession this is something that all lawyers need to grasp. The relationship between lawyer and client was once one of mystery and a bit of fear. How often did we see older TV programmes where a character would put on their best suit and tie to go and see the ‘brief’. We are now in a world where communication is instant and informed.

In the long run this can only be a positive development for us all.


  1. Tweeting during surgery? Surely this is a clinical negligence claim waiting to happen....

  2. Yes - I think he might struggle to defend that one!!

  3. It is kind of stupid of people to think that Dr. Kim is actually the one tweeting. I'm sure there were about 20 different people outside of the operating room that were incharge of tweeter instead of him using one hand to tweet and one hand to remove the tumor from the patient's brain. Get a brain people, and a smart one at that!