I thought it would never happen to me.
I’m a small-time guy. As I’ve stated before, my practice is not small or solo. It is fun-sized. In the vast legal world, I’m about as insignificant as you get. My niche is easy to ignore, and even easier to dismiss.
This brings me to Avvo. I don’t post advice there. I’m not a contributor. I only go there for periodic checks of my information to ensure that everything is still accurate and that nothing stupid happened. Plus, it is always fun to check my latest Avvo size. When time allows, I’ll occasionally write something nice about attorneys I know, but only when I know enough about them to make an intelligent, positive appraisal based on real legal work. I’ve never garnered business from them, nor do I plan to do so. It is a passive profile, at best.
Additionally, and possibly most important, Avvo insists upon including my full middle name on the profile. The mere sight of my middle name causes me to experience epileptic seizures. Thanks, Mom.
Lately, Mark Bennett reacted amusingly, yet truthfully, to random requests for Avvo reviews. He is brutal, and justifiably so. After reading this, I logged-in to my account to make sure that some automatic bullshit setting at Avvo wasn’t doing this with my profile. To my relief, there doesn’t appear to be such an automatic setting. At the same time, I was dismayed to see that requesting a review requires one to make an affirmative choice to click on a “Request Endorsement” button. Based on my limited research, each of those who earned their honest review from Mark asked for it by making an affirmative choice to click the button next to his picture.
So, I’ve covered both my relief and my dismay. Now, let’s turn our attention to my horror. I discovered this review on my profile.
I ran through every possible scenario about how I know Christopher.
Is he a long-lost cousin? A check of the family tree produced negative results.
Someone from my hometown? Ha! No.
Undergrad/law school classmate or fellow alum? Nope.
“Fellow lawyer in community?” He’s hundreds of miles from me and not working in military law, as far as I know.
A search of email history and call logs for someone who may have contacted me for help with a case involving a service member also produced negative results.
Former female acquaintance who went the transgender route? To the best of my knowledge, no.
OK, I don’t know the guy. So, let’s break down the numbers.
Excluding the last sentence, the number of words he uses to describe me: 15.
The number of words he uses to describe himself: 29.
Number of times I’ve given advice on Avvo: 0. This is pathetic compared to Christopher’s 7,962 answers on Avvo.
Endorsements for Christopher on Avvo: 250 from all over the US.
Perhaps when saying that I give “well reasoned and common sense advice on Avvo,” he really means that I give common sense advice about Avvo. If that was his intent, the number is 1 because of this. In that case, I appreciate the kind words.
Number of times I’ve interacted with him: 0 (unless the whole transgender thing listed above).
So, Christopher, the floor is yours. I’m open to hearing more about how you learn from me every day based on my “excellent” advice on Avvo.
That’s all I have time to say. Gotta go bludgeon a casual acquaintance who just endorsed me on LinkedIn.
Oh, and one more number…
Number of times I deleted Christopher’s endorsement from my Avvo profile: 1.