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Friday, 1 June 2012

The Virtual Lawyer - part deux

I have discussed previously the development of the Virtual Lawyer and how the world is changing at breathless pace.

Ii is not surprising that lawyers are reported to be well behind the game, as far as social networking is concerned. That is certainly the case in Australia according to a report in Lawyers Weekly –

According to Deloitte Partner Pete Williams – ‘the legal profession is a “fair way behind” other professional services organizations when it comes to its use of social media and mobile technology.’

When you think about it, the advantages are obvious. The use of Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn provides instant communication with clients and potential clients. More importantly it is the way the world is now communicating. The possibilities are endless. Just to update from my last blog on this topic, my LinkedIn page now tells me that my connections link me to a possible 5,293,404 other members. That is about the population of Denmark! And that is just LinkedIn.

There is now doubt that any law firms that do not embrace this are likely to be lag behind. If they do there is serious competition coming up on the rails. According to Legalfutures the biggest online provider of legal services in the USA is

And they are planning to cross the Atlantic. This will see online activity at a level that we will not have seen before.

This is just a taste of what is to come. I think that the days of putting on your best suit for a visit to your lawyer have already gone. 

So what will  a law office be like in 20 or even just 10 years time? 

Maybe disputes will be resolved via a games platform where the litigant has to negotiate a series of death defying hurdles in order to rescue Princess Justice with all sides agreeing to accept the winner - could be cheaper and more fun!  Or will some guru set herself up as @the_judge on twitter and pass down clear judgments in 140 characters. Sound bizarre? Well 25 years ago so did the idea of sending letters via a telephone!

But seriously lawyers and their clients have to be prepared for anything.

The future is the social network and those firms who do not grasp this could well get a big and rather nasty surprise.


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