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The Common Scold is named after a cause of action that originated in Pilgrim days, when meddlesome, argumentative, opinionated women who displeased the Puritan elders were punished by a brisk dunk in the local pond. Believe it or not, the tort lasted until 1972, when State v. Palendrano, 120 N.J. Super. 336, 293 A.2d 747 (N.J.Super.L., Jul 13, 1972) pretty much put it to rest. But the thought of those feisty women, not afraid of a little cold water, has always cheered me up and inspired me. I first used the moniker as the name of my humor column at the University of San Francisco School of Law many moons ago, and revive it now for this blawg!


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NEW LOW IN THE SANDBOX

Sandbox_1 It's bad enough that big firms too often don't post the names/bios/contact info of their C-level execs, but here's a new low: some firms are refusing to offer details about their associates, using the lame excuse (we heard that on the C-levels, too) that they don't want other firms to go poaching.

See Leigh Jones' story from The National Law Journal here, and commentary by Carolyn Elefant's commentary here, and Denise Howell's wisdom here, and Dennis Kennedy's comments here, and Bruce MacEwen's thoughts here and f/k/a here , and Kevin Heller here, and, ah hell, just click on Technorati here. (The outrage is growing faster than I can chronicle.)

This is the stupidest move I've heard in a very long time. WHEN are law firm partners going to understand that you don't gain loyalty, commitment, and a sense of participation by treating people like second-class citizens. Can you say "caste system?"  Oh please. As several of my colleagues have observed, no wonder some top bloggers insist on remaining anonymous.

Dumb. Dumb. Dumb.

Update 3/15: Evan Schaeffer wrote an hysterical parody of all of this today, at www.legalunderground.com.

March 13, 2005 | Permalink

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Listed below are links to weblogs that reference NEW LOW IN THE SANDBOX:

» The "Cloaked" Associates, Chapter 2 from Adam Smith, Esq.
It hasn't taken the legal blogosphere long—just barely over the weekend—but help is on the way In Re:  Decloaking Associates.  David Giacolone may or may not have been the first to suggest it, but as of this morning Kevin Heller ... [Read More]

Tracked on Mar 14, 2005 12:11:39 PM

» The "Cloaked" Associates, Chapter 2 from Adam Smith, Esq.
It hasn't taken the legal blogosphere long—just barely over the weekend—but help is on the way In Re:  Decloaking Associates.  David Giacolone may or may not have been the first to suggest it, but as of this morning Kevin Heller ... [Read More]

Tracked on Mar 14, 2005 12:13:13 PM

» a forgotten scar from f/k/a . . . .
paint by number the child's river escapes its bank [Read More]

Tracked on Mar 14, 2005 3:45:11 PM

» Decloaking devices: Legal (blogger) aid for big-law associates from Legal Blog Watch
In [Read More]

Tracked on Mar 14, 2005 5:46:13 PM

» The Epic Battle of the Law Firms and the Legal Recruiters: A Recounting of the Way the Pogrom Began from Notes from the (Legal) Underground
Amid an improved economy and an apparent upturn in lateral hiring, some law firms are trying to shield their associates from the wiles of recruiters offering richer rewards. Some firms are limiting the contact information about associates provided on t... [Read More]

Tracked on Mar 15, 2005 7:20:29 AM

» Nowhere to Hide from TechnoLawyer Blog
Via DennisKennedy.blog comes news of a Law.com article about how some law firms have removed associate bios from their Web sites to prevent poaching by headhunters. This development reminds me of an incident during my first year of practice at [Read More]

Tracked on Apr 10, 2005 6:21:00 PM

Comments

As I suggested in my post "decloaking the nameless associates," [ http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/ethicalesq/2005/03/11#a3435 ], "Seems to me, we could use weblog-power to undo the undue depersonalization of associates.
We could post lists of the associates working at the various offending law firms, including as
much information as we can get about each lawyer. Then, search engines would find the info
and make it available to those wanting to identify the lawyers at a particular firm, or wanting
to contact a particular associate, or one with particular areas of expertise."

"Naturally, the anonymized associates would be expected to get this information,
(in as complete, up to date and usable form as possible) to their favorite weblog editors."

Webloggers have the technology and the search engine placement necessary to change the balance and show (once again) that the Goliaths don't have all the rocks.

Posted by: David Giacalone | Mar 14, 2005 9:49:02 AM

I'm offering the space and there are two options for cloaked associates to submit their information. Learn more here:

http://techlawadvisor.com/2005/03/more-on-decloaking-associates.html

Posted by: Kevin Heller | Mar 14, 2005 12:40:21 PM

Love the sandbox pic!

Al

Posted by: Al Nye | Mar 15, 2005 9:52:27 AM

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