Web week

The Lawyer‘s Web Week is a weekly commentary on legal activity on the web. This includes an overview of the best of the week’s blogs. If you want to direct us to useful links, email webweek@ thelawyer. com.

Bar crawl
Now that the Bar Council’s blog (http://blog.barcouncil.org.uk/) is up and running, there’s no stopping it.

Bar Council chairman Geofrrey Vos QC gets stuck in to that all important question: “So, what is the purpose of this chairman’s blog? It is to keep the subscribers to the Bar Council informed about things that I do on their behalf, which would not otherwise be known about. It is all about accountability.”

On the other hand, Tricia Howse, a member of the employed barristers committee, is using the blog to plan her social life.

“We are One Bar and we are collectively represented by the Bar Council. We are members of the four Inns of Court and by golly, I think all that is worth celebrating. I propose to celebrate by drinking my way round the Inns next month at the summer parties.”

Howse sounds like our kind of gal.

She continues: “I am far too old to get wasted in this process; rather I relish the convivial atmosphere and the glorious surroundings, even when it rains (as it will, on one or two).

“I will meet old friends and make some new ones. I may go alone or take guests, who are invariably envious of my privileges of membership, or be a guest.”

We expect her next post to call for free bacon sandwiches and Nurofen for all barristers.

Brennans keeps it old school
While a lot of firms have been busy designing and redesigning their websites to keep up with online trends, Australian firm Brennans Solicitors (http://www.brennan law.com.au) is holding on to its old-school look.

The cheerful website looks like a whiteboard covered with multicoloured scribbles.

Instead of the usual deal updates on the home page, Brennans gives space to Paul Brennan’s Law and Disorder blog, a cartoon gallery and video clips.

The blog by Brennan is the real highlight. He shares lawyer jokes and stories about ex-clients, all illustrated with cartoons drawn by Brennan himself.

Recent posts include: “I once represented a client who refused to supply a sample of breath in a drink drive case as he had an upset stomach. The Diarrhoea Defence – best before lunch.”

Brennan is refreshingly honest. “Twenty years ago, I was representing up to five defendants a day. My batting average was not that bad, but with lost trials and bail applications lots of my clients were placed in custody.

“Looking back, with some clients (murderers, bank managers etc) it was a bit of a relief that they were not at liberty to critic [sic] my performance.”

But what really gets Brennan angry is the thought that traditional wigs and gowns may be on their way out of the courts.

He reports on a group called Swag (Save Wigs and Gowns). The group’s spokesperson Mr Fytit has responded angrily to an article in The Spectator that called for the banning of wigs and gowns in court.

Fytit is quoted in the blog as saying: “In a society where men shave their legs and woman show the cracks of their behinds with respect we think the public have a real cheek to comment on our attire.”

In response to The Spectator article’s stance on the wig and gown, Fytit said: “What did he expect? Bermuda shorts? A sequined catsuit?”We can but dream.