One of the problems with the legal industry is that it's opaque. Sure, the big corporate law firms do have established reputations and brands, but individuals in need of a lawyer don't have good ways of finding one. Last week, a new site called Avvo was launched that promised to compile ratings and reviews on lawyers nationwide. The launch got a lot of buzz, in part because of the novelty of the idea, but also because the ratings system, by most accounts, didn't work. Several top-caliber lawyers, including sitting Supreme Court judges, weren't given particularly good ratings. Not surprisingly, one lawyer that didn't like his rating is already threatening to sue the site. There's no telling how the courts will respond, but since the site is just synthesizing data from other sources, there wouldn't seem to be anything blatantly illegal going on. Legal issues notwithstanding, it's baffling why the lawyer would want to file this suit and bring more attention to his low rating.
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