Last time I looked Scotland was still part of the UK. Not, however, in the eyes of The Lawyer whose media correspondent, David Allen Green, has totally excluded it in his article on ‘The UK’s Top Legal Tweeters in October 2011’. This article looks at “the current leading UK individual legal tweeters – the nine or so with more than 3,500 followers”. These according to David Allen Green are:-
1. @babybarista (7,462 followers)
2. @Charonqc (5,940 followers)
3. @afuahirsch (5,856 followers)
4. @copyrightgirl (5,095 followers)
5. @MarksLarks (4,946 followers)
6. @JoshuaRozenberg (4,422 followers)
7. @AdamWagner1 (3,938 followers)
8. @John_Cooper_QC (3,715 followers)
9. @_millymoo (3,595 followers)
Scotland no more
No Scots Law Twegals (legals who tweet) amongst those unless we include @Charonqc who whilst now living in London hails originally from the north side of Hadrian’s Wall. He may be returning north soon as part of his plan to tour the UK doing legal podcasts in a campervan. Other Twegals on the list may have Scottish connections. I know, for example, that @_millymoo spent some time living in Edinburgh in recent years. However, no currently domiciled Scots Law Twegals appear on the list.
Notably absent is Gavin Ward (@GavWard) who with 9,929 followers would potentially top the list. I will look later though at English Twegals, not mentioned by David Allen Green, who do actually top the list. Another well known Scots Law Twegal noticeable by her absence is Michelle Hynes (@legaleagleMHM) with 4,079 followers.
Top English Twegals ignored
Notwithstanding the fact that Scottish Twegals were excluded from this UK list there are also a number of very notable omissions in respect of well known and highly followed English Twegals. Where, for example, is one of the leading lawyers on Twitter, Chris Sherliker (@London_Law_Firm), with a very healthy 13,859 followers. Not far behind Chris, in follower numbers, is Steve Williams (@MotoringLawyer) with 12,858 followers. Slightly lower down the follower scale, but still well above the 3,500 bottom line set by David Allen Green, we have Annabel Kaye (@AnnabelKaye) with 6,835 followers, Chrissie Lightfoot (@TheNakedLawyer) with 4,160 followers and ‘Clarinette’ (@Clarinette02) with 3,632 followers.
Thus we already have at least another 7 Twegals (with a follower count of over 3,500) to add to David Allen Green’s list of 9. David Allen Green was clearly too modest to include himself in his list. With 18,693 followers he clearly outstrips all other UK Twegals when it comes to follower numbers. At times, however, David Allen Green’s follower count can change to 2,575 when he switches personalities from @DavidAllenGreen to @JackofKent. I believe the account with the larger following was originally the @JackofKent one.
The alternative top 9 list of the UK’s Top Legal Tweeters in October 2011
With apologies to any Twegals I may have overlooked here is what I would put forward as a more accurate list of the top 9 UK legal tweeters in October 2011 based purely on the number of their Twitter followers:-
1. @DavidAllenGreen (18,693 followers)
2. @London_Law_Firm (13,859 followers)
3. @MotoringLawyer (12,858 followers)
4. @GavWard (9,929 followers)
5. @BabyBarista (7,462 followers)
6. @AnnabelKaye (6,835 followers)
7. @Charonqc (5,940 followers)
8. @afuahirsch (5,856 followers)
9. @copyrightgirl (5,095 followers)
This also shows that the base line need not start at 3,500 followers but can actually start at 5,000 followers. Only 4 of the Twegals on The Lawyer’s original list actually remain on this revised one and none of those are in the top 4.
However, as David Allen Green quite rightly says: “a high follower count by itself may not be impressive, and nor is a low follower account a disgrace”. It has been said that you can only properly maintain stable social relationships with about 150 people at any one time (Dunbar’s number). So perhaps those who follow and are followed by about 150 select tweeps have got it just right.
David Allen Green also makes reference to the individual lawyers using Twitter just to promote their practices who don’t seem to be getting much traction in building up their so called “social media profiles”. Charon QC highlights this in ‘Flawger, Flâneur and Friday frippery….’ which very kindly mentions The Time Blawg’s post ‘I Blawg. You Flawg. Period?’
However, I am not really aware of individual lawyers in the UK attempting to use Twitter in this way. If there are any they must be far and few between. That is more the preserve of the corporate law firm Twitter accounts which often lack personality and/or engagement and as a result usually gain very few followers. On the whole individual lawyers on Twitter do engage and inform. Indeed there are now so many doing this well that it would be an almost impossible task to list them all for fear of accidentally missing one or two out.
Once bitten, twice shy – Not The Lawyer!
The Lawyer has, in the past, published law firm Twitter lists produced by PR agencies/marketers that were less than credible. I have already looked at these on The Time Blawg in ‘Law Firm Twitteratigate – The Whole Story’ #Twitteratigate and ‘UK Law Firms with Klout – A Clearer Picture’ #Kloutgate. In the latter of those two posts I commented that “one would have thought that The Lawyer would have learned a lesson from Law Firm Twitteratigate”. Clearly not, as they are now actually creating such stories themselves! #Twitteratigate2
Will we someday actually see a well researched, comprehensive and objective look at the state of legal tweeting in the UK?
Update: 15 October 2011
Another UK Twegal with over 3,500 followers who should have been included in any objective list of Twegals by follower number is Suzanne Dibble (@law4mumpreneurs) with 3,917 followers.