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Were Prime BigLaw Twitter Usernames 'Twitterjacked?'

Back in November 2008, a couple months after I joined Twitter, it was clear to me that at some point down the road big law firms were going to discover Twitter, too. I assumed that for consistency and branding, they would likely want to use their internet domain names as their Twitter username, and took some time one morning to see whether BigLaw had locked up their logical Twitter usernames.

Going through a list of the top 50 law firms, I was quite surprised to see that no less than 95 percent of the names that I thought these top 50 law firms would eventually want to use were unregistered. I suggested in a post on my own blog that day that anyone reading from BigLaw should "take 30 seconds and register your law firm's name today ... Even if you don’t understand what Twitter is, please just trust me and do this. Your law firm will thank you later, I promise!" I listed about 35 no-brainer Twitter usernames that I felt BigLaw needed to immediately lock up (e.g., @dlapiper, @jonesday, @akingump).

One week later, on Dec. 5, 2008, I checked on these 35 Twitter names again to see if anyone had responded, and was again surprised: Every single one of the 35 law firm names I listed had been registered. Given the 100 percent registration, my fear at the time was that “Twitter-squatters” might have hijacked at least some of those names trying to make a buck down the road. Six months later, a spot check of these 35 names shows that they remain registered but with no signs of life or ownership.

So I'm asking: Were these prime usernames Twitterjacked? If so, can they be recovered? Have any of the 35 BigLaw firms attempted to reclaim these names, or perhaps given up and gone with Plan B names? BigLaw lawyers from these firms, do you think your firms care about this?

Legal Blog Watch guest blogger Bruce Carton is editor of Securities Docket, an online publication that tracks securities litigation and enforcement developments on a global basis.

Posted by Bruce Carton on July 17, 2009 at 11:08 AM | Permalink | Comments (4)


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