There has been more than three months of tension over the shooting of Michael Brown by police officer Darren Wilson. And with the no-indictment ruling by the Grand Jury, the tension could escalate. We can anticipate that this, much like with the death of John F. Kennedy, will be a flashpoint for analysis by conspiracy experts, political activists, and promoters of various theories about whatever.
Let's face it: Law is complex and, to myriad laypeople, boring. Members of the media, ranging from establishment to social, are trained to identify the angles which will resonate. Not bore.
Even the buttoned-down legal media do that. Reuters will take a different perspective than Bloomberg. And none will feel accountable for presenting all the facts. Even the Law Blog in The Wall Street Journal provides snippets of data to support the reporter's point of view.
Abovethelaw.com is so wildly popular and attracts so many credible sources because it has developed a distinct point of view as the voice of truth about the business of law. That extends from the decision to attend law school to why equity partners are being forced out. Of course, what ATL tells is only part of the story - the part which will attract and keep attention. On this blog I have learned to do exactly the same thing. Angles are everything.
Law firms which want to get a "fair" hearing for their clients in the court of public opinion will have to hire top public relations agencies. That's now a must-investment. At trials in the actual courts of law they also should employ live-bloggers and tweeters who have legal backgrounds. That's the only way to ensure that their clients' story will get attention. After all, very few trials are high-profile. Those which aren't don't bring in establishment media. Yet, the clients' court case could be referred to for decades.
Points of law, so fascinating to brandname litigators, simply trigger the glaze-overs for even sophisticated, educated people. It's no longer enough to be on the right side of the law. Now it's required to position and package that tale with adequate staging and dramatic narrative.