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Another Social Network for Lawyers:

Social networking sites for lawyers continue to proliferate. In 2008, we saw the emergence of Legal OnRamp, described as a collaborative site for in-house counsel and law firms. Then there was the recent launch of the American Bar Association's Legally Minded, which my colleague Bob Ambrogi noted here.

Now, courtesy of Future Lawyer Rick Georges, comes word of yet another lawyer networking site, aptly named The site promises to serve as both an online resource for lawyers seeking information on courts and judges (including a feature that allows lawyers to post comments anonymously about a particular judge) and a directory to help lawyers locate local counsel and exchange referrals. The site offers a basic membership for no charge and a premium membership for $240 a year.

But from the looks of the Web site, it seems MyLawNetwork may have jumped the gun with its public launch. The site boasts an uncluttered, tight design, but beneath the professional looking facade, there's minimal substance. For example, when I clicked on "Maryland," one of the jurisdictions in which I'm licensed, the site displayed a list of each of the state's judicial counties. But when I tried to drill down, there wasn't any additional information -- not even the address of a particular court or any of the judges. As for content, the site currently includes a grand total of 10 articles on assorted topics, and no blog -- just a feed from other blogs.

Likewise, I couldn't find information on who's behind MyLawNetwork. The About Page claims the site was started "for lawyers, by lawyers," but I don't see a single name listed on the site. I'm not sure how its creators expect to build the type of community and trust they're hoping for when they're not willing to provide any biographical information about themselves.

MyLawNetwork seems to be another one of those "if you build it, they will come" social networking sites, like the short-lived, early mover Lawbby. The site's lack of content is a missed opportunity -- it would have been more promising if it offered great content while waiting for a community to build around it. Hopefully MyLawNetwork will get its act together and increase its substance, but by the time it does, users may have already moved on to the next new thing.

Posted by Carolyn Elefant on February 20, 2009 at 02:17 PM | Permalink | Comments (3)


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