Given that bloggers are in the business of taking in and pushing out content, our use of Twitter isn’t surprising. A more interesting development is that lawyers at large law firms, including fairly senior partners, are taking to the social networking site. One notable example is Frank Aquila of Sullivan & Cromwell, the high-powered M&A attorney who was named a Legal Rebel by the ABA Journal in part because of his use of Twitter (where he has over 1,300 followers).
The latest is even more prominent: superstar litigator John Quinn, founding partner of Quinn Emanuel. Over the weekend — because QE lawyers are always working, or at least always checking their email — this firm-wide email went around:
John Quinn is on Twitter. He will be tweeting legal developments, firm victories and events, as well as miscellaneous musings at @jbqlaw.
Firm victories. Like in the Redskins case?
I interviewed John Quinn about his foray into Twitter. What did he have to say?
ATL: Why did you decide to join Twitter?
JBQ: It’s increasingly being relied on as a close-to-real-time source of information, especially by younger people. I hope to mix useful professional information and commentary with firm news and JBQ trivia. We’ll see how it works!
ATL: And how are you feeling about being on it so far?
JBQ: I am a little nervous about it, actually, and I suspect that many of my partners are terrified. But I am excited and think it’s going to be fun.
ATL: So, your partners — are any of them on Twitter?
JBQ: I was surprised — not that I could find! Of course, many prominent business people are, especially in Silicon Valley. But lawyers are not famous for being early adapters.
ATL: Does your firm have a policy regarding social networking use by lawyers and staff?
Good question. Not that I know of.
ATL: Despite being the leader of the nation’s second most-profitable large law firm, as well as one of the country’s most in-demand litigators, you’re known to answer own emails — often in lowercase type. Are you going to do all your tweets yourself?
I will compose them all myself — every word. But I may not always do all the inputting. I travel a lot and will likely have to call tweets in to an assistant who will enter and post.
Scanning what John Quinn has tweeted thus far, it looks like he IS doing much of his own tweeting. The updates are very “JBQ” — funny, informal, breezy, candid. And mostly lowercase. For example:
of all offices its hardest recruiting for silicon v; its like gertrude stein said abt oakland; grt opp tho–thin lit talent
Does Quinn accept résumés over Twitter? Probably not; he doesn’t seem to slow down enough. Quinn is a noted athlete — a biker, runner, and hiker — and some of his tweets tout this:
parkermeridien has best hotel gym in nyc–maybe the world
Running around the reservoir in central park–the gr8est city run in the world.
just back from running stairs in the rose bowl; in nyc mon and tues for mtgs re–what else?–suing a bank
just back from 4hr ride pasadena->hansen dam and back via la tuna canyon. beautiful LA day.
Along the same lines, the background for his Twitter page is the cover of the June 2006 issue of The American Lawyer, featuring a trim-and-fit Quinn sitting astride a racing bike. The cover reads: “The Mighty Quinn: John Quinn is in better shape than you are. Now he wants to eat your lunch. Inside a litigation tour de force.”
His Twitter bio reads:
Founder & Managing Partner at Quinn Emanuel, largest biz litigation firm in the world. GC @ AMPAS. Ironman tri-athlete, Shakespeare enthusiast, father of 5.
Quinn’s not exactly modest — but then again, on Twitter, you don’t have to be. (My own Twitter feed can get quite self-promotional / self-involved.)
So welcome to Twitter, JBQ! We suspect that you’ll “twit” right in.
John B. Quinn [Twitter]
Frank Aqulia [Twitter]
Above the Law – official feed [Twitter]
David Lat [Twitter]
Elie Mystal [Twitter]
Kashmir Hill [Twitter]
Frank Aquila: Free Talker [Legal Rebels / ABA Journal]
Earlier: We’re a Bunch of Tweeps