Saturday, November 19, 2011

A talking head, yes, but does he have anything to say?

Herewith my recent interview for a forthcoming appearance on Avy Meyer's North Town News Magazine. Despite dire predictions to the contrary, Avy's program survived my 2009 appearance; I have every confidence it will survive this as well. In the meantime, I am grateful to Mr. Meyers for the opportunity to appear on his program.

With the continued permission of Mr. Meyers, judicial candidate interviews on NTNM are posted on Page One of this blog on or around their original air date.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Tiptoeing hesitantly into another social network

I haven't gotten into too much trouble since I signed up for Facebook. My son-in-law was recently touting Google+ but, after looking into it a bit, I decided not to take the plunge. Not yet, anyway.

But there are all kinds of social networks floating around the Internet. Take Twitter, for instance. It gained initial fame as a conduit for snark and gossip, and still has a knack for getting pro athletes into trouble, but it has also apparently become an accepted business tool. The Illinois Supreme Court has an official Twitter feed. Still, I don't understand how I could use it. For that reason, perhaps, I've never been tempted by Twitter.

But LinkedIn has tempted me. It seems a straightforward marketing tool, and every lawyer, especially a solo practitioner, must think of marketing these days. I've been unsure about links, however, especially links to links. In the "six degrees of Kevin Bacon" age, anyone can wind up linked to anyone.

That concerns me. I'd rather not be linked with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, however tenuously.

However, my daughter Brigid is a senior in college. The good people in the placement office (or whatever they call it these days) at Dominican University told Brigid that LinkedIn was a great way to network in hopes of finding meaningful employment after graduation. I certainly want her to get a job. She encouraged me to join, if only to critique her résumé.

And then I started thinking... maybe I might use LinkedIn as a business development tool, too.

So I signed up and started playing with it. I've recently become certified as a mediator for the Cook County Law Division Court-Annexed Major Case Civil Mediation Program and the Chancery Division's Mediation Program; I thought that, once I figured out the program a bit, LinkedIn might be a good way of promoting my availability for this service.

I particularly liked the idea of being able to post my curriculum vitae right from the LinkedIn site.

But, alas. I haven't figured out how yet. I converted my CV to a pdf, and the file is much smaller than the stated 500 KB limit, but I can't seem to upload it. And I'm still wary of asking people for links; the program wants me to explain how I know this person or that one. My instinct is to be wary of disclosure.

LinkedIn, the program, has no such concerns. Several of the "recommendations" it has made to me for links have been very accurate. (And, no, I didn't give it my email address books.)

So I'm now crouching in the shadows of LinkedIn, uncertain of how best to immerse myself. The good news is, a month or so in, I haven't yet been linked to Ahmadinejad. The bad news is that my profile has only been viewed, according to the program, by two people -- one of them my daughter Brigid. (LinkedIn says so.) The other was an "Anonymous LinkedIn User." I suspect it was another family member, better versed in the ways of LinkedIn than Brigid or myself.