Social media has changed the practice of law forever. Today, what you do or say or what you fail to do or say with respect to social media could change your life and your career. Even attorneys who do not engage social media at all likely have staff members and clients who do.
Learn how social media activity affects your professional responsibility requirements under the Rules of Professional Conduct as well your practice management. Think you don’t need this information? Think again! Consider the following questions:
- Are you failing to execute due diligence in discovery or in representing your client if you don’t include social media in your efforts?
- Are you and your staff at risk for violating attorney-client confidentiality by using social media without meaning to do so?
- Are you effectively supervising staff whose social media interactions might subject you to professional liability?
- Does “friending’ other attorneys, jurors, or other parties and the judiciary jeopardize your good standing as an attorney?
- When is a post, blog, Tweet, or article tantamount to the unlicensed practice of law?
- What are the hazards of using social media platforms to vent or express pleasure or displeasure about a case or those involved?
- Is your firm’s website “advertising” or is it informational?
- Are you potentially violating almost every rule in Article VIII Rules of Professional Conduct?
Social Media Ethics will illustrate a sense of the real and potential perils involved in attorneys and their staff’s use of social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn®. Acquire guidelines and strategies for avoiding possible liabilities and pitfalls.
Charles H. Gardner of Much Shelist, P.C. in Chicago serves as Special Counsel in the Intellectual Property & Technology group and is head of the firm’s social media practice. He represents a broad range of clients on technology, social media, business and intellectual property matters, with a particular eye toward navigating the legal challenges and opportunities arising from the intersection of new media technology with traditional business issues. Mr. Gardner works with clients to develop and document policies, create and implement procedures and programs, and conduct compliance audits related to the use of the Internet, new media and social media technologies and to stay on top of the ever-evolving regulations and best practices. He has served as an executive, in-house counsel and outside counsel for a number of the country's top media companies, including Harpo Studios, Inc. (producer of The Oprah Winfrey Show) and Warner Bros./Telepictures.
James J. Grogan is both the Deputy Administrator and the Chief Counsel (DACC) of the Illinois Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission of the Supreme Court of Illinois (ARDC). For over 31 years, he has investigated and prosecuted hundreds of charges of lawyer misconduct and has argued dozens of disciplinary cases in the Supreme Court of Illinois. He is a Past President of the National Organization of Bar Counsel (NOBC), the bar association of lawyer regulators. For over 25 years, Mr. Grogan has taught legal ethics, first at the DePaul University College of Law and then at the Loyola University of Chicago School of Law, where he is an Adjunct Professor. He has presented hundreds of speeches, lectures and workshops to law firms, bar associations, corporations and judicial and governmental groups and agencies on various professional responsibility and lawyer regulation topics.