November 28, 2014 nº 1,574 - Vol. 12

“Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?"
"That depends a good deal on where you want to get to."
"I don't much care where –"
"Then it doesn't matter which way you go.”

Lewis Carroll 
Alice in Wonderland

In today's Law Firm Marketing, How to create content when you have nothing new to say

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  • Top News

WTO members approve historic trade deal

The World Trade Organization has received the unanimous backing of its 160 member nations for a first-ever multilateral trade deal, an agreement that has been years in the making and that the organization claims could add $1 trillion annually to global commerce. India had been a sticking point on the Trade Facilitation Agreement. New Delhi had insisted that there be no constraints on stockpiling food. The agreement allows that "for developing countries, public food procurement programs for food security will not be challenged. But India and other developing countries will have to report their procurement to the WTO. European Union Trade Commissioner said that The Associated Press as saying: "Once in force, it will help developing countries better integrate into the global economy, intensify regional integration and lift millions out of poverty.

European MPs want Google break-up

The European Parliament has voted in favor of breaking Google up, as a solution to complaints that it favors its own services in search results. Politicians have no power to enforce a break-up, but the landmark vote sends a clear message to European regulators to get tough on the net giant. US politicians and trade bodies have voiced their dismay at the vote. The ultimate decision will rest with EU competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager. She has inherited the anti-competitive case lodged by Google's rivals in 2010. Google has around 90% market share for search in Europe and rivals asked the commission to investigate four areas:

• The manner in which Google displays its own vertical search services compared with other, competing products
• How Google copies content from other websites - such as restaurant reviews - to include within its own services
• The exclusivity Google has to sell advertising around the search terms people use
• Restrictions on advertisers from moving their online ad campaigns to rival search engines

Predecessor Joaquin Almunia tried and failed to settle the case. A series of concessions made by Google were rejected, leading Almunia to suggest that the only option was a fine. This could be up to $5bn. The Commission has never before ordered the break-up of any company, and many believe it is unlikely to do so now. But politicians are desperate to find a solution to the long-running anti-competitive dispute with Google. (click here)

European legislator urging the breakup of Google has ties to a law firm

Andreas Schwab, a German member of the European Parliament, has been making headlines in the last week after drafting a resolution that calls for the breakup of Google. But Mr. Schwab is not just a legislator; he is also "of counsel" at the German law firm CMS Hasche Sigle, which has represented some of the German publishing interests that have been most eager to declaw Google. He earns roughly $15,000 to $75,000 annually from the firm, according to a disclosure filing. The firm's website lists his expertise as competition policy. Potential conflicts like working at a law firm are barred by the United States Congress, though permitted in some American state legislatures. European law has no prohibition on holding a second job at a law firm, though it does require disclosure of the relationship. Congressional guidelines in the United States say that the "restriction on law practice arises from the lawyer's duty of undivided loyalty to his or her clients, which makes the practice of law particularly susceptible to conflicts with the wide-ranging responsibilities of Members."

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  • Crumbs

1 - U.S. judges overturn gay marriage bans in Arkansas, Mississippi - click here.

2 - Facebook Threats Go to High Court in Hip-Hop Free-Speech Case-click here.

3 -Thai court sentences five to death in war-torn south - click here.

4 - Twitter Inc. Plans To Acquire Shots, A Selfie-Only Social Network App -click here.

5 - Justice Department investigating alleged HSBC leak to hedge fund - click here.

6 - Ferguson: Protests Seen Across US Cities- click here.

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  • MiMIC Journal

China drafts domestic violence law that doesn't protect the unmarried

China has drafted its first national law against domestic violence, a move hailed by campaigners as a major step forward. The new bill defines domestic violence for the first time and offers clear guidance on restraining orders. Activists have welcomed the move but say the law does not go far enough. Nearly 40% of Chinese women who are married or in a relationship have suffered abuse. Domestic abuse has long been seen as a private matter in China despite the scale of the problem. It was only in 2001 that physical abuse became grounds for divorce. Although the move is considered something of a milestone in Chinese law, critics both in the media and elsewhere are denouncing the draft, calling it vague and conservative. Critics' first complaint is that the draft applies only to physical and mental abuse. Compared with similar laws around the world, the draft of the Chinese law would narrow the scope of the definition of violence. Meanwhile, others also take issue with the draft because it limits coverage of instances of domestic violence to only married relationships.

Beijing store 'bans Chinese customers'

A clothes shop in Beijing has caused an outcry after putting up a sign banning Chinese customers, it's been reported. The store is embroiled in a racism row after posting a sign which reads: "Chinese not admitted, except for staff", the official Beijing Youth Daily reports. By way of explanation, one of the shop's employees tells the paper some Chinese customers are "too annoying" and that "Chinese women often try lots of clothes but end up buying nothing." The shop was also forced to pay a foreign customer $5,000 after his wallet was stolen, and surveillance camera footage showed a Chinese customer was responsible, the employee says. But another member of staff suggests the ban is actually to prevent rivals from copying the shop's clothing designs. The sign has caused uproar on Chinese social media sites, with one Weibo user asking: "Is this still China?"

  • Law Firm Marketing

How to create content when you have nothing new to say

By Tom Trush

Real quick, let's solve a problem. It sounds something like this ..

 
"I don't have anything new to say" or "I don't know anything that my competitors don't already know."

Too often business owners and entrepreneurs fall back on these justifications when explaining why they don't create helpful content for prospects. They believe the information they share must be an original concept. 

But this is not the case. 

Keep in mind, you have a distinctive style when you present material. Your unique voice resonates with certain people, while others prefer an alternative source. 

In fact, even when you share identical concepts as your competitors, no two people take away the same ideas. 

For instance, look at late-night television. Jimmy Fallon and Jimmy Kimmel both interview celebrity friends and offer humorous takes on pop culture. Both target the 18-49 demographic and have a knack for viral videos. And both use the Internet and social media to expand their audiences.

But, if you watch late-night television, you likely have a favorite. You prefer one over the other, right?

The fact is, the more you share helpful information, the more you attract the prospects you want. Prospects seek out people they like and trust. And by helping them, you prove you care about their needs -- not just the money you hope they bring you.

Your content offers a glimpse into your personality and perspective. When prospects like what you share, they naturally crave more.

This desire especially works to your advantage when you have big-brand competitors. Thanks to legal fears, many larger companies must deliver sterile, heavily scripted marketing messages that offer little feeling. 

You don't have this restriction. 

What's more, with common concepts, you have the freedom to add your own experiences. Or, to really attract attention, go against familiar claims. 

I used this strategy a few years ago with an article titled "Why a Website is a Worthless Investment." I received several responses from confused readers. With so many marketing experts touting the need for a website, why did I recommend something different?

You can find out here: http://www.writewaysolutions.com/blog/808/clarification-about-why-websites-are-worthless/

Tom Trush is at http://www.writewaysolutions.com.

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© Trey Ryder

FREE LAWYER MARKETING ALERT: If you'd like to receive Trey Ryder's weekly Lawyer Marketing Alert, send an e-mail to Trey@TreyRyder.com. Write "Subscribe LMA" in the subject line and write your name and e-mail address in the body of the message.

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  • Historia Verdadera

Evasión fiscal 

El fisco argentino denunció penalmente al banco HSBC por ayudar supuestamente a 4.040 contribuyentes argentinos a evadir impuestos con la apertura de cuentas en Suiza. (Presione aquí)

Negocios

La empresa estadounidense Strategic Air Finance (SAF) compró por US$70,3 mlls. los siete aviones de la liquidada aerolínea uruguaya Pluna para arrendarlos a otras compañías aéreas.

Cooperación

Holanda ofrece apoyo para mejorar condiciones de la industria minera en Colombia. La ministra holandesa de Comercio Exterior y Desarrollo, Lilianne Ploumen, visitó la región minera de César (norte), donde acudió junto con una delegación de cinco empresas energéticas neerlandesas y varias ONG.  (Presione aquí)

Repatriación

El gobierno suizo autorizó la repatriación a Brasil de US$26 mlls., del ex director de abastecimiento de la petrolera estatal Petrobras, Paulo Roberto Costa. El caso tiene relación con el desvío de millonarias cantidades de dinero de la compañía a través de una red corrupta. (Presione aquí)

  • Brief News

US-backed mortgages put to test in an innovative lawsuit

Not engaging with borrowers who have missed payments may not seem like the strongest grounds for litigation against a bank. Yet that is the basis for an innovative lawsuit against US Bank, a division of US Bancorp, one of the largest banks in the country. The legal action could mean fresh legal problems for other big mortgage banks, as well. It is the latest threat to emerge from a barrage of cases that have forced big banks to pay tens of billions of dollars in recent months. The lawsuit focuses on a popular type of government-guaranteed mortgage that in fact requires that banks take distinct steps — like trying to arrange a meeting — when borrowers stop paying. The lawsuit is being brought by Advocates for Basic Legal Equality, a legal aid group. In a twist, the group is suing US Bank in federal court in Ohio on behalf of the United States government, using the False Claims Act. This legislation, which dates to the Civil War, allows private citizens and groups to pursue legal action against companies and other entities for receiving payments from the government on false grounds.

Ukraine in anti-corruption pledge

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko says he would like a foreigner to head the country's new anti-corruption body. He was addressing Ukraine's parliament, as it convened for the first time since elections in October. He described "rampant corruption" as the "main cause of poverty in Ukraine".

US cites aged law to decrypt phone data

The Justice Department is turning to a 225-year-old law to tackle a very modern problem: password-protected cellphones. Prosecutors last month asked a federal magistrate in Manhattan to order an unnamed phone maker to provide "reasonable technical assistance" to unlock a password-protected phone that could contain evidence in a credit-card-fraud case, according to court filings. The court had approved a search warrant for the phone three weeks earlier. The name of the phone maker, its operating system and the reason the government hasn't been able to unlock the phone remain under seal. The case could offer hints for the government's strategy to counter new encryption features from Apple Inc. and Google Inc. Looking at the phrase "technical assistance" in the order, does this mean you have to do something to your product to make it surveillance friendly?

Social media told to simplify terms and conditions

Social networki ng firms including Facebook and Twitter are being told to make it clearer to members how they collect and use their data. A report by the UK Commons Science and Technology Select Committee says the firms' terms and conditions are far too long and complex. The MPs say users may not be aware of how their details can be used by websites and apps. Any reasonable person would struggle with long privacy policies, they add. The committee says reading such documents has been likened to "engaging with Shakespeare". And it says that the rules have been designed for use in US courtrooms and to protect organizations in the event of legal action rather than to convey information.

Italy suspends flu drug over deaths

Italy suspends the use of two batches of an anti-flu vaccine made by Swiss firm Novartis amid reports three deaths may be linked to the drug. Italy's pharmaceutical watchdog AIFA said the suspension of Fluad was a precautionary measure. Novartis said "no casual relationship to the vaccine has been established".

Mexican president to overhaul police

Mexico's president announces plans for a massive overhaul of police, in the wake of the disappearance of 43 students in September. He announced proposals for a series of constitutional reforms that would allow the country's 1,800 municipal forces to be dissolved and taken over by state agencies. The reforms would also enable Congress to dissolve local governments infiltrated by drug cartels.

Germany agrees law on quotas for women on company boards

Germany's biggest companies have been ordered to ensure that 30% of supervisory board positions are held by women from 2016 under a law agreed late on Tuesday by the governing coalition. Firms that have not implemented a quota of female directors will have to leave some vacancies unoccupied. Some leading German business figures have criticized the new legislation. Similar measures have been introduced in other European countries including Norway, Italy and the Netherlands. (click here)

First FGM trial in Egypt ends in acquittals

Two men in Egypt were acquitted for charges relating to female genital mutilation (FGM) on Thursday. Since the law banning FGM was amended in 2008, this is the only case of FGM that resulted in trial. The charges stemmed from the death of a 13 year-old girl who died last year of an allergic reaction to penicillin, after her father took her to a local doctor for an FGM procedure. The prosecutor charged the doctor with manslaughter and committing the practice of FGM, and charged the girl's father with endangering her life and forcing her to undergo FGM. FGM is banned in Egypt, but the practice continues due to a lack of prosecutions and investigations, in part due to the belief among local authorities that FGM is a private, family issue. In response to the verdicts, Human Rights Watch (HRW) released a report calling for Egyptian authorities to take clear actions to end the practice of FGM by enforcing the law, prosecuting and investigating those who carry out the procedure and undertaking measures to increase national awareness of the harms of FGM.

Commission decides Scotland to have more independent powers

UK's commission on strengthening devolution, the Smith Commission, concluded on Thursday that Scotland's parliament should have more independence in certain matters. The commission, which was set up by Prime Minister David Cameron, recommended that Scotland's parliament should have the power to decide Scotland's income tax rates, the voting age, welfare payments and should have a consultative role in reviewing the BBC Charter.

Malaysia PM proposes anti-terrorism law

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak on Wednesday suggested to the country's parliament that new laws are needed to strengthen existing legislation to combat terrorism. Razak expressed particular concern about citizens returning home to Malaysia with extremist ideology after fighting alongside Islamic State (IS) militants in conflict zones of Syria and Iraq.

Argentine tax agency says HSBC aided clients to evade tax

Argentina's tax agency said it found thousands of undeclared bank accounts at HSBC Holdings Plc's Swiss unit that helped Argentines evade taxes.

Illinois fights court block of $111 billion deficit fix

Illinois Attorney General is asking the state's top court to reinstate a plan to fix a $111 billion pension deficit, a case that may resonate across the US as governments seek to trim public employee benefits to close budget gaps. Illinois's pension deficit is the biggest in the US Democratic Governor Pat Quinn signed legislation in 2013 that would save $145 billion over 30 years by cutting cost-of-living increases and raising retirement ages. Judge John W. Belz in Springfield on Nov. 21 struck down the law, ruling it violated a state constitutional prohibition against reducing public worker retirement benefits. "The court finds that there is no police power or reserved sovereign power to diminish pension benefits," Belz wrote, rejecting the state's arguments to the contrary.

Bank of New York Mellon fires currency trader after internal review

The bank, like many of its competitors, reviewed its foreign exchange operations after regulators last year began examining possible collusion between currency traders to potentially manipulate the $5-trillion-a-day currency markets – namely benchmark currency rates.

  • Daily Press Review

Fierce fighting rages in Iraq's Anbar
Al Jazeera, Doha, Qatar

Amr Moussa Considers Election Boycott
Asharq Al-Awsat, Pan-Arab daily, London, England

Jesus: married with children? New book drops bombshell
Haaretz, Liberal daily, Tel Aviv, Israel

PM to outline migrant benefit curbs
BBC News, Centrist newscaster, London, England

Briton killed in suicide attack
CNN International, London, England

Jessie J admits she is not in love with boyfriend Luke James
Daily Mail, Conservative daily, London, England

Albino dolphin WON'T be slaughtered after capture by Japanese fishermen
Daily Mail, Conservative daily, London, England

Queen of crime fiction PD James dies aged 94
EuroNews, International news, Ecully Cedex, France

Exclusive: France's Hollande spells out French foreign policy
France 24, Issy-les-Moulineaux, France

Turkey offers 'joint committee' for deadlock in Cyprus talks after 'private firm' suggestion
Hurriyet Daily News, (Liberal, English-language), Istanbul, Turkey

23,000-year-old statue of woman with large breasts and buttocks found in France
Independent The, London, England

Major Ukrainian TV provider drops Russian channels
Moscow News The, Independent, Moscow, Russia

After the death of Phillip Hughes, we have to ask: is sport too dangerous?
Telegraph The, Conservative daily, London, England

Jessie J bares almost all
Telegraph The, Celebrity news, London, England

OPEC keeps oil output on hold despite low prices
China Post, English-language daily, Taipei, Taiwan

N.Korea's Nasty Young Rulers
Chosun Ilbo, Conservative daily, Seoul, South Korea

Sudan Gunmen on camels kill 15 in Darfur
Hindustan Times, New Delhi, India

Man gets 5-year jail term for sexual abuse of 10-year-old girl in Chennai
India Times, Conservative daily, New Delhi, India

Supreme Court assails vote disparity in 2013 election but doesn't nullify results
Japan Times, Independent centrist, Tokyo, Japan

Australia out of step with new climate momentum
New Zealand Herald, Conservative daily, Auckland, New Zealand

Ukraine President cancels trip over protests in eastern Ukraine
Straits Times, Pro-government, Singapore

Nick's $340k Facebook win
Sydney Morning Herald, Centrist daily, Sydney, Australia

Australia out of step with new climate momentum
Taiwan News, English-language daily, Taipei, Taiwan

Banco Santander's Chairwoman vows to extend $10 billion in Brazil infrastructure credit
The Economic Times, Business, Mumbai, India

'Mexico cannot go on like this': Country's president unveils anti-crime plan
Canadian Broadcasting Centre, Toronto, Ontario

Brazil's Rousseff makes significant shift with new pro-market economic team
Globe and Mail The, Centrist daily, Toronto, Canada

Liberty Reserve Brought Down By 'Joe Bogus': How The Feds Arrested Arthur Budovsky
International Business Times, Business news organization, New York, U.S

Shale Oil Threatens the High Prices Enjoyed by OPEC
IPS Latin America, International cooperative of journalists, Rome, Italy

Poor performance catching up with active stock fund managers
Reuters, Business News, New York, U.S

Fukushima workers still in murky labour contracts - Tepco survey
Reuters, World News, New York, U.S

Rogue retirement home ordered to cease operating
Toronto Star, Toronto, Ontario

Hollande to visit Ebola-hit Guinea
BBC News, Centrist newscaster, London, England

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