Larry Bodine wondered out loud this morning on his Law Marketing listserv if a new website, is the worst idea ever. The discussion focused on whether or not this type of advertising gives the profession a bad name.

On the “lawyers acting badly” scale, I’d argue that a lawyer taking a summer associate to a strip club after hours, a senior partner under indictment for wiretapping, or lawyers bribing judges are what gives the profession a bad name, rather than these folks.

We are so quick to view legal advertising and marketing campaigns through our own experiences, which, for the most part, come from corporate law America. You know. The folks who bring us legal books, globes, city skylines, drops of water, and smiling attorneys for inspiration. (My firm’s site is the legal books, by the way).

So, is this the most “offensive” advertisement out there? I’ve seen worse:

  • There’s the Top Gun DUI defense attorney here in L.A., tagline of “Friends don’t let friends plead guilty.”
  • Larry H. Parker might have gotten the guy $2.1 million, but he kept failing to show that the guy was in a wheelchair.
  • And, one of my favorites: “Life’s short, get a divorce.”

While these ads make me cringe, the names of the firms and the service they are selling stick in my head. Which is the point.