Facebooking Judge Catches Lawyer in Lie


Galveston, Texas-area lawyers on Facebook may want to double-check their friends list, especially if they’re about to appear before Judge Susan Criss.

That’s because Criss, a state court judge who is learning to adapt to social media as a way to connect with long-lost friends and is leveraging Facebook as a judicial campaign tool, has also learned a few things she didn’t expect.

Judges questioned Criss for more details about her ground rules. And they asked whether the ABA should be exploring model rules relating to Twitter and Facebook.

Criss said she’s the first to admit these social networks are new to her, but her ground rules are simple. She follows her ethical canons and is careful about what she says and who she friends. Yes to all lawyers—to avoid an appearance that she favors one side over another. Friending the general public is trickier. So far, she’s been more selective.

As for whether the ABA needs to address social media in its Model Rules, she and other panelists said no. “The rules are pretty good,” Criss said. That’s not to say that the ABA shouldn’t explore new media and its impact on lawyers, judges and the law.

Read the full story here at ABA Journal >>>

Here’s for one proactive judge: don’t come up with pokey if you know you open up your life and times in social media already. In a way social media enabled judicial efficiency. I guess this applies to all of us in other situations as well. Great stuff.