This is a very nice treatment of this issue from my friend Nicole Black— Should you copy clients on emails to opposing counsel? Those who have read my musings on the subject know I think BCC should never been used for email, unless you are using that technique to file the emails within your system, i.e. you are BBC’ing internally within the law office.

But is it appropriate to Reply All when the opposing counsel emails you and CC’s his client? That’s a more nuanced discussion and requires analysis. While there are some obvious cases where it is most likely appropriate (e.g. “3:30 p.m. instead of 3:00 p.m. is fine with me), this post suggests it is often not.

Today’s tip is from Attorney@Work and Will Hornsby, who is an attorney focused on the professional responsibility of innovative and tech-based legal services. He served as staff counsel in the ABA’s Division for Legal Services for 30 years.

His post Blogging, Posting and Ethics — Oh, My! is very useful information for any attorney who wants to blog or post online about his or her law practice. Spoiler Alert: Obtaining the client’s consent in advance before posting is a simple safe harbor.

Dennis Garcia is an Assistant General Counsel for Microsoft. I have mentioned him before in my 2020 tips. He recently delivered a presentation to the Microsoft Legal Department Latinx employee community about strategies for remaining visible – and increasing visibility – in the workplace despite working in a remote environment. He shared his tips in a post, Increasing Your Visibility in a Virtual World.

Dennis Garcia

This is a great read for those working remotely at any type of business or law firm. But it also includes sage advice for everyone doing any form of remote working as well as anyone who feels their networking efforts have really taken a hit during this most unusual year.

Today’s tip is something completely different. We will discuss your vocabulary. Lawyers generally have a larger vocabulary than most because we work with both the written and the spoken word— and we had to add many new words to our vocabulary in law school.

But when drafting, it is very good to know some words can have entirely opposite meanings, depending on how they are used. So your attention is directed to 25 Words That Are Their Own Opposites.Writing with quill pen

The first example in the article is sanction. As we lawyers know, sanction can mean two completely different things, from “give official permission or approval for (an action)” to “impose a penalty on.” But the writer uses a good example to show how a poorly written sentence can make it unclear which of the opposite meanings is intended. Armed with that knowledge, writers should make clear which of the different meanings is intended in the sentences they create.

The other 24 words on the list may not be used by lawyers as often as sanction, but it is still good to know which words can have opposite meanings depending on how they are used

iPhone JD’s Jeff Richardson has just published 20 iPhone tips for lawyers in 2020. Did you know VIP notifications can be set to notify you if you receive an email from someone special? There are some great tips here, including using your iPhone as a magnifying glass, taking a picture while recording a video without interrupting the video or how to change Siri’s accent. (My new British assistant’s voice seems much more eager to help.) Check out Jeff’s Tips to learn some new ways to work — and play.
                                    Jeff Richardson

 

The 2020 OBA Annual Meeting kicks off today. It is virtual this year and Oklahoma lawyers can register for free for some great programming. Our Annual Meeting offers 12 hours of MCLE credit including several hours of ethics education. It is not too late for OBA members to register.

I’m going to focus on the law practice management and technology focused content in this post. We have some great experts teaching at our meeting.

  • Jack Newton is CEO and founder of the practice management solution Clio. His program The Client-Centered Law Firm: How to Succeed in an Experience-Driven World is based on his popular new book of the same title, which has been called “an astonishing mix of market analysis, business strategy and practical how-to advice.” His remarks are informed by Clio’s annual Legal Trends Report. Jack is a real visionary and lawyers do not want to miss this program. Clio even donated a few copies of Jack’s book to be given as door prizes during the livestreamed session.
  • Several years ago Claude Ducloux of LawPay entertained us with the singing group The Bar & Grill Singers at OBA Solo & Small Firm Conference. His presentation this year is What I Wish I’d Learned in Law School: Running the Ethical Office in the 21st Century (Ethics).
  • Catherine Sander Reach, ABA TECHSHOW 2020 Co-Chair will give a timely program Friday afternoon Everything A Law Firm Should Know About Microsoft 365. Timely because most lawyers are either using Microsoft 365 or will be using it soon.
  • Online Client Development (Google My Business, Social Networking, and Communities) is a program where Gyi Tsakalakis, founder of AttorneySync, will share his expertise. If you haven’t yet set up Google My Business for your law firm, this is a “must attend” program. Many free online marketing tools and techniques will be examined.
  • Laura Mahr, the founder of Conscious Legal Minds LLC, has three presentations on building a resilient mindset, dealing with burnout and bouncing back. Her previous presentation to the OBA on these subjects garnered great reviews.
  • Tomorrow’s programming includes Tales from the Trenches, an ethics program brought to you by Oklahoma Attorney’s Mutual Insurance company with panelists: Phil Fraim, Isaac Fraim and Alison Cave. What happens in the trial of a professional malpractice case against a lawyer is something good for all lawyers to appreciate.
  • Clio is also hosting a demonstration of Clio at 12:30 pm Thursday November 12. If you aren’t using a practice management solution this is a great overview of the features of these services, especially since Clio has just announced some new features. There is an additional registration, but no charge. Go to Thursday on the conference schedule

This question sounds a bit clandestine. But in an age of mobile phone and spam phone calls, many of us are concerned about widely sharing our mobile phone numbers.

Several months ago I wrote a column for the Oklahoma Bar Journal Text Messaging for Lawyers. In it, I mentioned ZipWhip, an enterprise texting service that allows one to use their app to send and receive text messages on a mobile phone without revealing the phone number. There are other similar services.

But, there is a free method that allows you to block your number from being displayed when you place a call. Simply dial *67 before you dial the number. The recipient’s caller ID will display your call as “Private” or “Blocked.” Of course, today that means many will not answer the call and you will have to decide whether to leave a call back number or not.

For more ideas along this line, including setting up your phone to not share your number on any calls, read 5 ways to block or hide your number when making calls by Kim Komando in USA TODAY.

Zoom became extraordinarily popular this year. When people were locked down and working from home, what was not to like about a free videoconferencing service that was simple and easy to use? We then got to hear a lot about Zoom’s shortcomings from bloggers and reviewers. I always suspected Microsoft was encouraging that line of attack. But some critiques were valid and Zoom did a remarkable job this summer plugging security holes and changing other features to increase security.

But as Microsoft 365 continues its march to become THE business platform, many Office users may find themselves tending to favor Microsoft 365 tools because they integrate with other Microsoft 365 tools they are using.

But for those like me who find themselves bouncing between videoconferencing tools will be interested in the things Teams does that Zoom doesn’t. Read 6 Microsoft Teams features Zoom doesn’t have. Blurred backgrounds, meeting notes, and better chat features are among the differences

Calendly now integrates with Teams, Zoom, and GoToMeeting and the integration is done through its basic free plan. See Calendly Announces Integration with Microsoft Teams, Makes All Video Conferencing Free For Users.

If you don’t know what Calendly does, you haven’t been to a legal technology conference in a while because “let me send you a Calendly invite” is often overheard in these venues. Lawyers, particularly those serving individual consumers, should consider using a tool like Calendly that lets prospective clients (and all clients) schedule their appointment at a time that is best for them. They pick from times that you have identified as available in Calendly. Many professionals now say, “Let me send you a link so you can schedule when you want to come in.” It is a more “user friendly” approach. And once they pick their time, everything happens automatically to place in on your calendar and give them email notification.

The integration with videoconferencing tools means when a client uses Calendly to schedule a Zoom or Teams video conference, the setup for the meeting links is handled by software. This is a great way to save a little time, often non-billed time.

There are other tools that do the similar things, like Microsoft 365 FindTime. But this service is becoming very common very quickly and I predict the law firm that doesn’t have online scheduling will soon be in the minority.