2/11/09

Law Firm Web Sites - It's Like Watching Sausage Being Made

The media has been making the comment that Congresses working on the $800+ billion stimulus package is a lot like watching sausage being made.  That very thought came to me while I was looking at some of the big law firms' websites over a period of time.
Anymore we tend to think that information that is presented on the lawfirm's website has been pulled from many different places --  Human Resources; Marketing; Information Technology; Knowledge Management.  But, we also hope that there are certain things that make the information... shall I say, "stable" once it is online.  
You hope that computer databases and web page programming will number things in order, place things in alphabetical order, and/or put correct dates on the corresponding information.
Well, apparently, you'd be mistaken!
I continually come across lists of names, that for no apparent reason, are in correct alphabetical order one day, and out of order the next:
Or, titles of employees that are numbers, rather than the actual title:
Phone numbers that seemed to be garbled by some magical computer gremlin:
Names spelled incorrectly:
Big Named Attorneys' names missing one day, and back the next:
You get to see when people prefer one name over another:
And, one of my favorites - a strange word like "bulldog" suddenly shows up on every page:
Of course, these types of errors aren't limited to law firm websites, but since this is my industry, I gotta play to my strengths!  In a way it is kind of heartening to remember that there are actual people behind these websites, and that the computers are still the tools rather than the providers of information.  It also shows that glitches - like information displaying out of order - means we haven't quite chased all of the ghosts from the machines yet.

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5 comments:

Jason Mark Anderman said...

Don't forget about the greatest law firm web site of all time: http://anonymouslawfirm.com/

Lisa Salazar said...

I'll never forget when a partner, in all seriousness, forwarded to me a screen shot of Boston Legal web site wanting to know why ours didn't look like theres.

I honest-to-god think that he didn't realize it was a tv show!

Lisa Salazar said...

I'll never forget when a partner, in all seriousness, forwarded to me a screen shot of Boston Legal web site wanting to know why ours didn't look like theirs.

I honest-to-god think that he didn't realize it was a tv show!

Laura Suttell said...

Bulldog? Love it. Have you noticed any instances of, "Boom! Roasted!" recently? Just wondering.

Greg Lambert said...

Laura,

Haven't seen "Boom! Roasted!" yet... I've only smelled the rancid stench of sulfur that was left behind.

 

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