Ireland's Legal Tweeters and Bloggers

The Irish Times ran an interesting article by Fiona Gartland (@FionaGartland) in the Monday 11 November 2013 edition of the paper, under the title The sky's the limit for legal eagles on Twitter. An insight into the Twitter and blogging habits of the Irish legal community. We know how things are in the United States through the likes of people like Kevin O'Keefe (@kevinokeefe), in Scotland thanks to people like Brian Inkster (@BrianInkster), in England via the Twitter activity of people like Adam Wagner (@AdamWagner1) and John Cooper QC (@John_Cooper_QC) - but how are things in Ireland north and south?

Speaking from a Northern Ireland perspective I can say that efforts to date have been modest, however there is a growing realization among individual lawyers and barristers and among law firms, big and small, that they need to colonise and articulate a voice in the new and emerging digital world. Barrister Mark McEvoy @markmcevoy, solicitor Mark Jackson (@jackson_m_a) and media soliticor Olivia O'Kane (@OliviaOkane1) (my Zero-140 interview on Elephant Creative with Olivia here) are very active on the Northern Ireland Twitter/social media scene. However, the lay of the land in the Republic of Ireland is a little more misty for me. I have encountered a few Irish solicitors, barristers, academics and law firms online, but there have been no Brian Inkster types who have truly taken hold of and driven the conversation to the British Isles or at an international level.

Perhaps this article in the Irish Times could be the opening of the door and the moment of change? The content of the article looked at three leading legal tweeters, two academics and a solicitor. Here's what the individuals had to say.

Fiona de Londras (@fdelond), professor of law at Durham University and founder member of the group blog humanrights.ie. She said:

"It’s a way I can still contribute to debates in Ireland as well as in the UK, even though I am now institutionally located in the UK. I can engage with a Minister, or a TD or a Senator so easily through twitter and connect them into my research in a way that was previously almost impossible for academics to do,” she says. But she adds “you have to be quite good in figuring out how to boil a message down”."

Limerick solicitor Rossa McMahon (@rossamcmahon) writes on clatterofthelaw.wordpress.com said:

"I used to work in Dublin in a big firm where I had a lot of colleagues and now I’m in a much smaller situation and I find it quite a good way of keeping in touch with other people. Sometimes you know someone through it and then privately bounce ideas off them or see what they think about particular things."

Rossa McMahon commented on the business development potential of social media, saying: "From a marketing point of view, I couldn’t necessarily say that I gain anything specific, although I have gotten bits and pieces of work out of it."

Law professor at Trinity College Dublin Eoin O’Dell (@cearta) has written about law, education and policy on cearta.ie since 2006. He said:

"I consider that it is a very important part of my academic work to make my research and arguments available and to engage in discussion and debate online is just another means of disseminating research and engaging in discussion."
Eoin O'Dell explained that his blog posts tend to be “considered discussions” of 500 or 600 words in length. He also explained that his Twitter account is used to share interesting items with his 2,200 plus followers and to respond to comments. He also said: "I think it’s a good thing and I think it is increasing the direction in which we are going."

Irish Times article in full here.

A list of social media savvy Irish Blawgers and tweeters:

Prof Fiona de Londras, Durham Law School, @fdelond, blogs at humanrights.ie

Eoin O’Dell, Trinity College Dublin law school, @cearta, blogs at cearta.ie

Rossa McMahon, Solicitor, @rossamcmahon, blogs at clatterofthelaw.wordpress.com

Paul MacMahon, Harvard Law School, @extemporeblog , blogs on the Supreme Court of Ireland at extempore.ie

Darius Whelan, UCC Law Department, @dariuswirl , blogs at Irishlawblog.blogspot.com

TJ McIntyre, Lecturer in law, UCD, @tjmcintyre, blogs at tjmcintyre.com

Daithi MacSithigh, Lecturer in Digital Media Law, University of Edinburgh, @macsithigh, blogs at Lexferenda. com

Mary Rogan, Lecturer in Socio-Legal Studies at Dublin Institute of Technology, @maryrogan, blogs at maryrogan.wordpress.com

Flor McCarthy, Solicitor, @FlorMcCarthy, blogs at mccarthy.ie/blog

Mark Tottenham, barrister, @staredechib, edits staredecisishibernia.com

Fergal Crehan, barrister, @fergal, fergalcrehan.com

Simon McGarr, Solicitor, @Tupp_Ed, blogs at http://www.tuppenceworth.ie/blog

Colm O’Dwyer, barrister @colmfod

Fergus Ryan, Lecturer in Law, DIT @ferguswryan

Mairead Enright, Lecturer, Kent Law School @maireeadenright and @pubprivlaw

Donnacha O’Connell, Professor of Law, NUIG, @donnchanuig

Rory O’Connell, Professor of Law, University of Ulster, @rjoconnell

Claire Murray, Lecturer in Law, UCC, @drclaire_m

John O’Dowd, Lecturer in Law, UCD, @odowdt

Eoin Daly, Lecturer in Law, UCD, @eoinmauricedaly

Conor O’Mahony, Lecturer in Law, UCC, @ConorUCCLaw

Ronan Lupton, barrister, @ronanlupton

Colin Scott, Dean of Law, UCD, @ColizScott

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Tags: Blog, Ireland, Media, Northern, Twitter, artist, barrister, blogger, cartoonist, law, More…media, social, solicitor

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Comment by Brian John Spencer on November 14, 2013 at 11:35

Very true Richard. That's America isn't it!


Editor
Comment by Richard Pettet on November 12, 2013 at 11:25

Great article and list, Brian, I'll be sure to check them out. Nice mention for Brian Inkster and Joh Cooper as well. Not really an O'Keefe fan. Selling wordpress themes to law firms, probably at pretty high rates, is exactly what's wrong with legal marketing, not the solution. Good business for him but for the firms? Anyway, rant over.

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