Stand By Your Words

Via Kevin, we learn what happens when a fictional, but entirely plausible, hiring partner hears the word ‘weblog’ for the first time:

Uh oh. One of the recruiting coordinators knocked on my door this morning. Apparently she had lunch over the weekend with one of her colleagues, and heard a story about an associate at another firm who had “some sort of online journal — something apparently called a weblog,” and was writing stuff about the firm, and her colleagues, and when they discovered this it became a big deal, because of what was up there, and they ended up reprimanding the associate and having her make the blog vanish immediately.

At Copyfight, Elizabeth Rader responds: Your Permanent Record:

My first reaction is one I have over and over in Internet law… firms–did you really think your employees never talk about the firm and its goings-on? Did you really think your candidates had no opinions other than those they glibly recited in their interviews and fancy lunches? Lawyers–did you really think the firm would never check your background? Did you really think the firm wouldn’t notice if you’re writing about it? My second reaction is also typical: Firm–get a thicker skin. Lawyers—own up to your past and, today, if you’re ashamed for someone to read what you’re saying, why are you saying it in the first place?

Even though it may seem ephemeral, what one posts publicly on the internet is searchable and increasingly permanent, thanks to tools like The Internet Archive and Google Groups.
Hence, I try to be responsible about what I post here and prefer to err on the side of discretion and silence.
Nick Morgan has adopted a similar approach towards responsible blawging: “writing in my own name forces me to take due responsibility for my public remarks. Plus, in the unlikely event that I some day produce a truly original thought, credit would be nice”
Incidentally, I Googled myself for the first time in a while and learned that my doppelganger in Australia is a cattle judge. Perhaps that bodes well for my chances of getting appointed to the bench someday?