A Personal Injury Blog Grows Up (Welcome ALM Readers)

This little blog on personal injury law that I started in November 2006 undergoes a change today. I’ve become an advertising affiliate of American Lawyer Media’s (ALM) Law.com Blog Network.

Yes, I see a raised hand out there in the back…

Q: What the hell?
A: Agreed.

Q: No, I mean really, what the hell? Why are you doing this?
A: Well, first because they asked. I’m a sucker for flattery you know.

Q: So if someone asked you to jump off the Brookl–
A: Jumping off bridges has nothing to do with law. ALM, on the other hand, publishes the New York Law Journal (my hometown paper of record), American Lawyer, National Law Journal and a slew of other legal products.

Q: But aren’t most ALM products geared toward BigLaw stuff?
A: A healthy percentage. In fact, up until now there weren’t any personal injury blogs in their affiliate network of 30 blogs.

Q: So you said yes because you could claim to be the first PI blog in the country to be in their network?
A: I told you I was a sucker for flattery. I’ve got an ego like everyone else. Weren’t you listening?

Q: Listening won’t help. This isn’t a podcast.
A: Go get your own blog if you want to be snarky.

Q: I’m thinking of starting the Noo Yawk Personal Injury Law Blog to compete with you.
A: OK, you can stay. Just play nice.

Q: I see that ad in the side bar. And also a box with the Law.com news feed. So they get to advertise their stuff on your blog that you slaved over?
A: Well, the ad is new. But I was running their news feed here from the start, just as I do on my web site. I ran it because it’s good. Same content now, just in a fancy looking box.

Q: Do they now own you?
A: No. I write what I want. They don’t own any part of the blog. This is an advertising affiliation agreement. I create content in the personal injury field that they hopefully like and promote in some way. They expand their reach a tad by (hopefully) reaching my existing readership, and I expand mine by (hopefully) reaching theirs. Maybe they’ll stumble on the greatest hits post and think this is worthy enough to add to their RSS feed.

Q: Why your blog?
A: Good question. One theory is that I threw money, booze and a Las Vegas junket their way. Another theory is that my little corner of the web was able to stand out a bit because many other personal injury blogs have a primary focus on self-promotion, and are quite a bit thin in the actual blogging department. If you have a third theory, I’m game to hear it.

Q:How much do you get out of this advertising deal?
A: Not sure. Maybe enough to buy an occasional six pack of Magic Hat. Mostly, I hope to get more readers. If I’m going to write, having readers is kinda nice. We’re back to that ego thing.

Q: Last year, in your Better Blogging:12 Tips piece, you said that a blogger shouldn’t “uglify” a blog with ads. Are you a hypocrite?
A: I see you’re a long time reader.

Q: You didn’t answer the question.
A: I see you’re a lawyer.

Q: Are you going to answer it?
A: Yes. The vast majority of ads I’ve seen do, in fact, uglify a blog. And that is because most are those wretched little Google ads that sit in the middle of the blog where the actual content is supposed to be. I don’t have a real problem with ads for law books, legal support services, etc., in an appropriate header or sidebar. But those won’t bring in readers and, with few exceptions, the money isn’t enough to push aside content or links. With ALM, however, I am hopeful that new readers will be brought in, and the ads themselves are directly on point. I figure that if it’s good enough for Howard Bashman or Blawg Review, it’s good enough for me. So I’m giving it a try.

Q: That’s it? More readers?
A: And a bit more. On my first year anniversary I wrote that I wanted to do more original pieces, as opposed to commentary on existing stories. So in addition to more readers, being known as part of the ALM Blog Network might give me a smidgen more legitimacy as a media outlet if I’m looking for original content. It can’t hurt.

Q: What next?
A: Regarding what?

Q: The blog.
A: Beats me. Hopefully a good personal injury story will drop into my lap and I’ll get to write about it.

Q: You have a story in mind?
A: No, but if you do, would you please email it to: blog [at] TurkewitzLaw.com

Q: I like the way you did that.
A: Did what?

Q: Ended this rambling fake interview with a request for tips.
A: Hey, I’m in the big leagues now. I need stories. Guest blogs are welcome too.

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The New York Personal Injury Law Blog is sponsored by its creator, Eric Turkewitz of The Turkewitz Law Firm. The blog might be considered a form of attorney advertising in accordance with New York rules going into effect February 1, 2007 (22 NYCRR 1200.1, et. seq.) As of July 14, 2008, Law.com became an advertiser, as you can see in the sidebar. Law.com does not control the editorial content of the blog in any way.

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