SOCIAL SUICIDE? – Falling off that stack of milk crates on TikTok may have netted you a bunch of new followers and maybe even a few new clients, but your firm may not be quite as impressed. As Law.com’s Max Mitchell reports, the traditional law firm paradigms of clients coming in through rainmaking partners or institutional advertising are now being turned on their head, thanks to the disrupter dynamics of social media. Naturally, the industry’s old guard is reacting to this trend the way it always does when something new comes along: by trying to kill it with fire. “I’ve seen associates that have built personal brands about their families experience negative performance reviews only attributable to their use of social media,” said Eric Pacifici, who recently co-founded boutique SMB Law Group after spending several years in Big Law, during which time he developed a significant Twitter following. ”I personally don’t believe there is any room within traditional law firms to build a meaningful personal brand. It’s a very fast way for a young attorney to destroy their career.” But those firms are missing out, Pacifici added: “I networked more people in six months on social media than I had in a decade in Big Law.”
SO MANY LAWYERS, SO LITTLE WORK – Law firms ended 2022 a little bit bloated—hey, who can’t relate to that?—but overall feeling better than expected, according to the results of a year-end survey released by the Wells Fargo Legal Specialty Group this week. The survey of more than 140 law firms found that net income was down a relatively modest 3.1%. Fabulous! But about that bloat… Not to be a buzzkill, but excess capacity is a problem as we head deeper into 2023. And the year-end productivity numbers detailed in the survey don’t bode well, which means there could be some pain still to come. As Owen Burman, managing director of the Legal Specialty Group, told Law.com’s Dan Roe: “With low utilization and excess capacity entering this year, and not a lot of real positives on demand expectations, we’d expect to see more rationalization if we don’t see more positives on the economic front at the end of the first quarter.”
ON THE RADAR – Fisker, an electric vehicle company formed via a SPAC merger, filed a petition Wednesday in Delaware Court of Chancery. The lawsuit, filed by Morris, Nichols, Arsht & Tunnell, seeks a declaration that a charter amendment is valid, which would certify millions of shares of the company’s common stock that are currently trading on the New York Stock Exchange. Counsel have not yet appeared for the defendant. The case is 2023-0119, In Re: Fisker, Inc. Stay up on the latest deals and litigation with the new Law.com Radar.
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