Open Letter to Senior Lawyer: I’m Not a Tech Expert
Dear Senior Lawyer,
I am writing in response to your letter dated January 17, 2013. In it, you imply that it is my responsibility to help you write your blog, create video ads, and come up with unique and exciting ways to use technology in the practice of law. Although I consider myself tech-savvy, I believe your expectations are unrealistic.
As you point out, I have grown up around technology. I had my first cell phone in 2000. I joined Facebook when it was only open to other college students. I joined Twitter briefly when it first came out, and even had a Blogger account at the end of my college career. During this time I was also trying to pass exams and figure out my life. Then I spent three years learning the law. I’ve spent the last two
figuring out starting to figure out how to be a lawyer.
In contrast, you’ve had the last twenty years to understand how law and technology fit together. You were already in law school when the Apple Macintosh was released. That means you’ve had the last thirty years to learn about new technologies as they develop. More importantly, you’ve been able to slowly incorporate those technologies into your practice. If you haven’t found a video solution that you like, or a system to stay up-to-date on industry developments, why should that be my problem? Why am I expected to have your solution?
How could my online footprint possibly compete with yours? Unless I started blogging in high school (as if that would have been a good idea) you have years of a head start. The idea that I could pick up video editing software in a flash begs the question why you haven’t. Possibly because it isn’t effortless?
I don’t dispute the value of technology to lawyers and clients alike. Nor do I discount the importance of an online footprint. But I resent the notion that I should be the one teaching you how to do these things simply because I am younger. Like you, I have followed the immersion of social media as a platform and learned about using it to promote my practice. But my age does not make me any more of an expert than you. Nor does it mean I should become your tech consultant.