Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Philadelphia Bar Association Legal Media Panel Recap

From L to R: Hank Grezlak, Mike Dunn, Gina Rubel (Furia Rubel), Lu Ann Cahn, Brandyn Bissinger (Furia Rubel), and Jeff Blumenthal.
Posted by Gina Rubel

This week, I monitored a legal media panel for the Bar-News Media Committee of the Philadelphia Bar Association for which I serve as chair. On the panel was Jeff Blumenthal from the Philadelphia Business Journal, Mike Dunn from KYW Newsradio 1060, Lu Ann Cahn from NBC 10, and Hank Grezlak from The Legal Intelligencer. Here are some of the take-aways:

- Jeff Blumenthal covers the business of law and the legal issues regarding the finance and banking industries. He said, “Read our paper and know what we cover and then reach out when you have a story idea or something you’d like to share. Think of three words: local, business, and news.”

- Lu Ann Cahn handles in-depth investigative reports. She said, “Lawyers need to think of their stories in terms of what they have that’s visual for the TV viewer. If you think you have a story, just call me but don’t say, ‘I have a story but I won’t go on TV and neither will my client.’”

- Mike Dunn is the City Hall Bureau Chief and it’s his job to cover the newsworthy courthouse stories. He said that “raw natural audio tape is always helpful when it can be supplied.” He also said that his stories typically run for 45 seconds so lawyers need to speak in concise sound bites minus the legalese.

- Hank Grezlak is the Editor in Chief of The Legal Intelligencer. He said that the paper is about covering the legal industry in Philadelphia, the surrounding counties, and often in Pennsylvania when the issues are of great import to the legal community. He said, “Call me if you think you have a story. If you are concerned about anything that may be sensitive, ask me if we can go off the record.”

- I shared a few thoughts on how lawyers and legal marketers can be great resources to the media and still serve the best interest of their clients. I reminded everyone to read Rule 3.6 of the Pennsylvania Rules of Professional Conduct concerning trial publicity.

To hear the full podcast go to the Philadelphia Bar Association website and check out their speakers’ program podcasts. If it’s not immediately, check back in a few days.

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