July 20, 2007  nº 517  -  Vol. 5  
 

“The Four Levels of Comedy: Make your friends laugh, make strangers laugh, get paid to make strangers laugh, and make people talk like you because it's so much fun.”

Jerry Seinfeld



In today's Law Firm Marketing: Secrets of a powerful law firm web site.

Do not miss the latest edition ofMigalhas LationAmerica in Spanish: click here to read it.

  • Top News

Brazil crash jet had thruster off

The plane in Brazil's air disaster that killed some 200 people on Tuesday had its right reverser - a motorized device to help slow it down on landing, "deactivated. It appears the Tam plane traveling along one section of the runway at higher than normal speed. Video footage shows the Airbus 320 appears to continue speeding along the runway without slowing. Experts said yesterday that the speed at which the aircraft was traveling in the video footage suggested that the pilot was in fact trying to "go round", a maneuver where the pilot tries to take off again after a failed or aborted landing. Runway overruns, which account for 29% of serious accidents worldwide in the past 12 years, is the leading category. 

Lawmakers agree to 100 percent scanning of container ships leaving foreign ports for US

Lawmakers agreed Thursday to a goal of scanning all cargo-containing ships before they leave foreign ports as Congress neared a deal on a major security bill. They  pushed through a provision allowing a five-year window for radiation scanning technology to be put in place and giving the Homeland Security secretary authority to make exceptions. Supporters said the measure was crucial to prevent the catastrophe of a ship entering a U.S. port with a nuclear device. Opponents said an approach based on calculated risk, taken in a port security bill passed last year, was more effective. The measure was part of the House bill that passed last January but was not included in the Senate version and is opposed strongly by the Bush administration, which said it was technically and economically unfeasible. Negotiators also accepted House language that would require the inspection of all cargo on passenger planes within three years.

Lawsuit accuses Chiquita of funding terrorism groups

Relatives of people alleged to have been be murdered by paramilitary groups in Colombia sued Chiquita Brands International Inc, accusing the banana company of funding terrorists. The lawsuit comes four months after Cincinnati, Ohio-based Chiquita admitted it paid such groups $1.7 million (€1.23 million) in protection money over six years to protect its most profitable banana-growing operation.  The group said, "Chiquita's involvement violates not only Colombian law and U.S. law, but also international law prohibiting crimes against humanity, extrajudicial killing, torture, war crimes, and other abuses." Company spokesman Michael Mitchell said he could not discuss specifics in the lawsuit, but added, "Suits of this nature are without merit, and we'll certainly defend ourselves vigorously."

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  • Crumbs! 

1 - Russia expels four British diplomats. (Read more)

2 - Chirac quizzed over phoney jobs scam. (Read more)

3 - From Wales, a box to make biofuel from car fumes. (Read more)

4 - Nokia starts global positioning service. (Read more)

5 - China GDP growth jumps to 11.9 percent. (Read more)

6 - Harley-Davidson net up but hints at production cut. (Read more)

7 - Whitbread up on talk of Accor bid interest: traders. (Read more)

8 - Global equities rebound but credit worries remain. (Read more)

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  • MiMIC Journal

Chinese economy refuses to cool

China's economy outstripped analysts expectations during the second quarter and grew by 11.9% from a year before. A boom in production, fuelled by strong exports and investment, is contributing to the inflationary risks the country now faces. The rapid growth has pushed inflation to a 33-month high. Government figures showed that annual consumer inflation in June reached 4.4%.

  • Law Firm Marketing

Secrets of a Powerful Law Firm Web Site

by Trey Ryder

When marketing legal services from your web site, you attract more clients and increase referrals when you provide information your prospects need. Here's how to design a web site that will improve your attorney marketing results.

Secret #1: Your web site should contain information that achieves the six essential elements for marketing success: Credibility. Differences. Interaction. Urgency. Commitment. Loyalty.

Secret #2: Your web site should be one place you display your entire marketing message. Your message should include:

(1) a powerful title,

(2) substantive content identifying your prospect's problem, proving it exists, identifying the solution, proving it works, and building yourself into the solution, 

(3) advice on how to hire a lawyer in the area of law you want to promote,

(4) a call to action spelling out the action you want your prospect to take,

(5) print articles that support your message,

(6) your photo and a detailed biography,

(7) articles you've written (published or not),

(8) results you have achieved or transactions you have completed for clients,

(9) testimonials from past clients (if permitted by your bar's rules of ethics),

(10) letters of recommendation from colleagues and professionals (if permitted by ethics rules),

(11) references by name, or an offer to provide them,

(12) a detailed list of services you offer,

(13) a services letter that explains to prospects how to hire your services,

(14) the many ways prospects benefit from hiring you,

(15) a list of your competitive advantages identifying how you differ from all other lawyers,

(16) a list of your prospect's objectives, which they can mark by priority and return to you by fax or e-mail, or bring them to their first meeting with you, and

(17) a written schedule of fees.

Secret #3: Your web site should contain in-depth information about the area(s) of law in which you want to attract clients. Each field of law needs its own marketing message. Make sure you provide enough educational information so your prospect concludes you are a respected authority in that field of law.

Secret #4: Your web site should answer every question your prospective client might ask. The more information you provide, the more comfortable your prospects feel. Don't worry about your message being too long. If prospects are genuinely interested in your services, they will read even a long message, providing the message is well written and relevant to their needs. Long marketing messages work, not because they're long, but because they're complete.

Secret #5: Your web site should offer reliable information that will involve prospects for long periods of time. You want prospects to see you as an authority. Also, you want them to see you as the only source of information they need. The more information you offer, the more prospects rely on you, trust you, and feel they know you.

Secret #6: Your web site should offer articles with attractive titles on your site's top level. Compelling titles seize your prospects' attention and draw them into your site. If you don't put these articles on the top level, your prospects might never see them because they might not navigate deeper into your site. So put articles on the top level where the titles will seize your prospects' attention immediately.

Secret #7: You should put "calls to action" at many points around your site. A call to action invites your prospect to contact you for one or many reasons. Put a call to action at the end of every article or page on your web site because that one article may be the only article your prospect has time to read.

Secret #8: Your web site should provide several reasons for prospects to interact with you through submit forms. You can use these forms to invite your prospect to (1) request articles not on your web site, (2) ask to be added to your mailing list, (3) request a copy of your seminar schedule, (4) ask you a question, (5) ask you to contact him, (6) request a case evaluation based on facts he sends, and so on.

Secret #9: Your web site should offer prospects many methods through which they can contact you. Some prospects prefer to make their first contact by e-mail. Others prefer the telephone. And yet others might prefer to send a fax. Make sure you offer prospects many ways to get in touch with you because you never know which method will most appeal to a particular prospect.

Secret #10: Your web site should project a dignified, professional image. Your web site projects an image, even if you don't want it to. Elements that affect your firm's image include your choice of colors, wallpaper textures, fonts, lines, designs and photographs. I encourage you to hire a professional designer who can help ensure that your web site projects the image you want.

Secret #11: For your convenience, your web site should need only minimal maintenance on an ongoing basis. If your web site requires heavy maintenance, you'll soon grow tired of the time commitment and cost. Design your web site so it requires only occasional updating of things such as seminar dates, recent issues of your newsletter, and so forth. Otherwise, your web site will become so much trouble that your staff will grow to resent it and you'll lose the many benefits it could provide.

Secret #12: Your web site should reach all of your audiences. Don't put information on your web site that appeals only to prospective clients. You can also post information that will appeal to current clients, referral sources, editors and even vendors. I have a link on my web site for editors and reporters. And while it doesn't generate a lot of traffic, occasionally an editor calls me in response to this information.

These attorney marketing secrets help you attract more genuine prospects to your web site -- and build the highest possible level of trust. These 12 techniques help you build a powerful web site that is highly effective at marketing legal services.

© 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

US$ decomisados

La Procuraduría General de México infomó que el gobierno podrá disponer de los más de US$ 205 mll decomisados al empresario chino-mexicano, Zhenli Ye Gon y sobre los cuales aún no se ha determinado su procedencia. La Procuraduria informó que de acuerdo a ley se esperará los 90 días de plazo para que el presunto propietario realice una representación, caso contrario en cumplimiento al Código Federal de Procedimientos Penales este pasará a ser patrimonio de los mexicanos.

Canal de Panamá

Por una diferencia de precios de casi US$ 3.4 mll., el magnate mexicano Carlos Slim salió derrotado de una disputa internacional para construir la primera fase de la ampliación del canal interoceánico. La Autoridad del Canal de Panamá (ACP) otorgó la primera licitación a la empresa panameña Constructora Urbana, SA (CUSA).

Minería

La empresa india Jindal Steel & Power Limited y el gobierno boliviano de Evo Morales suscribieron un millonario contrato para la explotación de hierro del yacimiento del Mutún. La firma asiática invertirá US$ 2.100 mll. durante los 40 años que dure la explotación. 

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  • Brief News

'First citizen' in Argentina poll bid

Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, has launched her campaign to become the country's first elected woman president. She announced her candidacy in July after President Nestor Kirchner said he would not be standing for re-election.

Verdict on top Pakistan judge due

Pakistan's Supreme Court is to consider whether or not the country's chief judge should be reinstated. Iftikhar Chaudhry was removed in March on the orders of President Pervez Musharraf, after being accused of misusing his office for personal gain. Chaudhry's supporters have said it was an attempt to undermine the independence of the judiciary. The suspension triggered mass protests. On Tuesday, a bomb attack on a rally in the capital Islamabad killed 15 people.

Black gets bail before sentencing

Disgraced media tycoon Conrad Black, nicknamed “Lord Frsaud”, has been told he can remain at liberty until his sentencing in November. Black, facing up to 35 years in jail after being found guilty of fraud and obstruction of justice, has been released on bail of $21m. Prosecutors had called for the British peer to be kept in custody, arguing that he may seek to flee the country.

US Senate rejects Iraq troop vote

Republicans in the US Senate have blocked Democratic plans for a vote on withdrawing troops from Iraq by the end of April, ending an all-night debate. The Democrats, with 52-47 in favor, fell short of the 60 ballots required to move the proposal to a final vote. Republican leaders dismissed the overnight debate as a publicity stunt.

'Dirty war' trial backed in Spain

The Supreme Court in Spain has ruled that a former Argentine junta officer should stand trial in Madrid for crimes against humanity. The decision annuls an earlier ruling by the High Court that Ricardo Cavallo should face justice in Argentina. Prosecutors argued that the case in Spain was in a more advanced stage than the one against him in Argentina. Spanish law allows offences committed abroad to be tried in Spain if a suspect is not facing prosecution in his home country.

Further troubles for global shares?

Ben Bernanke has revived fears that the crisis in the sub-prime lending market could cost up to $100bn and derail the US economy. His comments dented recent stock market optimism, with the key US and European markets losing ground. At the same time, US banks with exposure to the high-risk home loans market have started to suffer. The New York-based Dow Jones index closed down 53.3 points, or 0.3%, a day after an extended rally saw it touch the 14,000 mark for the first time. On the other side of the Atlantic, the UK's main FTSE 100 index dropped 92 points, or 1.38%, as investors worried about the affect a slower US economy would have on the earnings of many of the businesses listed. French and German shares also reacted badly.

Alitalia auction ends in collapse

State-owned airline Alitalia faces the threat of administration after Italy said the auction for its stake in the national carrier had closed. Italy's commercial airline Air One - the last serious bidder - withdrew from bidding for up to 49.9% of the government's stake amid restrictive sale conditions which would compromise its ability to turn around Alitalia, which currently sheds more than 1m euros ($1.3m) a day. The auction flop leaves the future uncertain for the loss-making airline.

LI pilots subpoenaed to testify about Brazil crash

A Brazilian judge issued a subpoena for the two Long Island pilots involved in a fatal collision over the Amazon in September, trying to compel them to testify in his courtroom. But the pilots' attorney said he will appeal the move. The order was sent to the Ministry of Justice, for forwarding to American authorities. The justice ministry's International Cooperation Department would provide airline tickets and hotel reservations for both pilots as required by the extradition treaty. Joel R. Weiss, the attorney representing the pilots, said "normal Brazilian procedure allows individuals in this situation to testify in their home state and does not require them to appear in Brazil. This order by the federal judge smacks of an end run around the protections of our extradition treaty. If the subpoena is served, we will appeal." Weiss said the pilots would cooperate with the trial process, "whether by deposition or even through video," as long as they did it here.

Google Goes to Washington

Google is trying to reinvent corporate influence-peddling for the Internet Age. The company is embarking on a quiet march through Washington to explain how its products can help politicians get elected. Google's newly hired team leader for political sales, Peter Greenberger, explained how attendees could use online ads and other services from Google to help their candidates win. One Google product could provide details about people who visited a campaign's Web site, such as the approximate area where they lived, Mr. Greenberger explained. "Tremendously valuable info," he said, adding, "It's free. Did I mention it's free? It's free."

Identity of EU file sharers should be protected in civil suits

European Court of Justice Advocate General Juliane Kokott  told the European Court of Justice (ECJ)  in an advisory opinion  Wednesday that European Union (EU) governments should resist disclosing internet user information sought by copyright industry groups for civil lawsuits. Kokott's opinion stems from a lawsuit filed by Promusicae , a Spanish music industry coalition, against internet service provider (ISP) Telefonica  to obtain the customers' names and addresses linked to IP-addresses that Promusicae suspects to be involved in illegal peer-to-peer music sharing. The Spanish court hearing the case requested the ECJ's interpretation of EU privacy laws, and may or may not follow Kokott's recommendation. In June, the Brussels Court of First Instance ruled that the Belgian Society of Authors, Composers, and Publishers (SABAM)  could hold an ISP liable  for illegal peer-to-peer music downloading  because ISPs have a legal responsibility to filter or block illegal peer-to-peer sharing.

Lawyers to Judge Kaplan: Unchain Us From this Case!

Shortly after Judge Lewis Kaplan dismissed the indictments against 13 former executives at KPMG on Monday, the law firm of Kostelanetz & Fink withdrew its representation of Richard Smith, the former vice chairman of tax at the accounting firm. Judge Kaplan isn’t inclined to just let the attorneys walk out the door. But it’s also unclear if he can stop them. The judge scheduled a conference for July 23 to determine if attorneys can withdraw before any pending appeals have been exhausted. Judge Kaplan ordered Smith’s attorneys, Robert Fink and Caroline Rule, to appear along with any other attorney who has withdrawn representation of their client. Fink said in an interview that he withdrew to avoid the situation in which the judge’s dismissal gets reversed on appeal and he is forced to represent Smith without getting paid for another year or two. Fink said his client wasn’t happy with the move, but added that the case has taken a toll on his 12-person firm. He was paid $400,000 by KPMG but then the firm stopped paying legal fees for the defendants. Fink says his client owes him “seven figures” and that further representation through a trial estimated to last as long as eight months could “wipe out his life savings.”

Bolivian assembly proposes unlimited re-election for Morales, future presidents

Morales' backers in an assembly rewriting Bolivia's constitution have proposed allowing the populist leader to seek re-election for an unlimited number of consecutive terms. Bolivian law limits presidents to two nonconsecutive five-year terms. But delegates are debating a change to the rule in the Constituent Assembly, convened by Morales last year to write a new framework giving greater political voice to Bolivia's long-suffering indigenous majority.

Drinks, Drugs, Dysfunction Star on Summer TV

As cable networks pump out more original programming, a surprising number of drug users and problem drinkers are wobbling into the summer lineup. Some series creators, like protective parents, aren't eager to categorize their characters by their substance abuse. Some watchdog groups say they are uncomfortable with the spread of drugs and alcohol on cable. To continue to just portray the drama of active addiction is just destructive. There are signs, though, that characters with that kind of baggage may be hard to maintain long term.

Travel company calls for holiday BlackBerry ban

Many surveys have shown that we are increasingly becoming a nation of workaholics who have become addicted to gadgets that help us stay in touch with the world of work 24/7, but this trend has led a travel company to call for the BlackBerry and devices of that ilk to be banned from the beach so that Brits can reclaim their free time. A staggering 20 million Britons feel the need to mix work and play and take work-related activities away with them while they're holidaying, according to a survey. Two-thirds of those surveyed admitted that their holiday time has been interrupted by work on occasions, while a worrying 80 per cent suggested that work issues cause them worry while they're away. The research also discovered that a third of people take their laptops of BlackBerry devices away with them on holiday, while three-quarters and 60 per cent have made or received a work-related call or email respectively while abroad, pointing to a fear of being disconnected from office proceedings. As a result, AlphaRooms.com is calling for such devices to be banned from holiday hotpots like the beach and asking people to get back to basics and reinstate holidays back to their rightful status as a means of escaping from the pressures of the daily grind.

FCC to auction off spectrum for US digital switchover

With the US scheduled to switch from analogue to digital television in 2009, the FCC is auctioning off its 700MHz wireless spectrum for use in data and broadcast applications. Google is predicted to be the highest bidder in the auction with other major existing wireless companies. The sell-off could net the US government $10-30 billion according to current analyst estimates.

  • Daily Press Review

First S Leone war crime sentences
BBC News, Centrist newscaster, London, England

National Assembly closes second extraordinary session
CongoPlanet.com, Independent online news aggregator

Ministers: 9 Out - 12 In
GhanaWeb, Online news portal, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Uganda: Adequate Penalties Needed Along With Trials
Human Rights Watch (Africa), International news press releases

Mosque backlash sees 51 more killed
iafrica, Online news portal, Cape Town, South Africa

Judge warns McBride... again
Independent Online, News portal, Cape Town, South Africa

McBride granted bail of R1000
Mail & Guardian Online, Liberal, Johannesburg, South Africa

Mbeki, Hani 'link' hurtful - ANC
News24.com, Online news portal, Cape Town, South Africa

Dinos, ancestors of crocs, fish lived together 220 mln years ago
Brazil Sun, Independent online news aggregator

DPP blocks all charges against Machel and Slaughter until review
Caribbean News Portal, Online news aggregator

Chile: Flawed Decision Not to Extradite Fujimori
Human Rights Watch (Americas), International news press releases

PERU:  Referendum on Mine Unlikely to Determine Its Fate
IPS Latin America, International cooperative of journalists, Rome, Italy

University of the West Indies (UWI) lecturer found dead - 10-y-o stumbles upon father's body
Jamaica Gleaner, Independent daily, Kingston, Jamaica

Peru: President Alan Garcia Cuts Importation Costs to Zero
Living in Peru, News portal, Lima, Peru

Chile players involved in post-match scuffle with Toronto police
The Globe and Mail, Centrist daily, Toronto, Canada

Black freed on bail
Toronto Star, Liberal daily, Toronto, Canada

Missing air force helicopter in Papua in 2005 discovered
Antara News, News agency, Jakarta, Indonesia

U.S. General Cites Progress in Iraq, Warns Against Quick Change
Chosun Ilbo, Conservative daily, Seoul, South Korea

Progress made on 123 agreement: US
India Express, News portal, Mumbai, India

Case registered against jeweller
India Times, Conservative daily, New Delhi, India

Freedom Writers
Japan Times, Independent centrist, Tokyo, Japan

Jealous business rivals planting 'black magic warning', claims businessman
Malaysian Star, Online news portal,  Selangor Darul Ehsan, Malaysia

Taleban stops bus and kidnap koreans - police
New Zealand Herald, Conservative daily, Auckland, New Zealand

Nuke talks end without disarmament deadline
People's Daily Online, English-language, Beijing, China

Lovers jailed over murder plot
Sydney Morning Herald, Centrist daily, Sydney, Australia

High turnout in Presidential poll
The Hindu, Left-leaning daily, Chennai, India

No charges in 'cash for honours' inquiry
BBC News, Centrist newscaster, London, England

Baugur cools Debenhams speculation
BreakingNews.ie, Online news portal, Cork, Ireland

Cash for honours: NOBODY will be charged
Daily Mail, Conservative daily, London, England

Beltelecom launches tender for NGN equipment
DMeurope, Online news portal, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Term-time holidays to cost pupils their place
icLiverpool, Online news portal, Liverpool, England

Russia expels 4 British diplomats
International Herald Tribune, Independent daily, Paris, France

Boat tragedy search called off
Isle of Wight County Press, Independent daily, Isle of Wight, England

C-charge gets public approval
Manchester Online, Independent daily, Manchester, England

Cumbria put on flood alert
News & Star, Independent daily, Carlisle, England

Jamie 'overwhelmed' by public's generosity
North-West Evening Mail, Independent daily, Cumbria, England

International students get a taste of Czech medicine
Radio Prague, Online news portal, Prague, Czech Republic

Britain On Alert Over Major Flood Fears
Sky News, Independent newscaster, Middlesex, England

On the Campaign Trail:  Obama Unplugged
Spiegel International, Liberal newsmagazine, Hamburg, Germany

No one to face charges in cash for honours inquiry
The Guardian, Liberal daily, London, England

DCC to buy CPL Petroleum for 74m
The Irish Times, Centrist daily, Dublin, Ireland

Doctor due in court over failed car bombings
The Scotsman, Moderate daily, Edinburgh, Scotland

Kneesy does it, Victoria
The Sun, Conservative tabloid, London, England

Severe weather warning for southern England
The Telegraph, Conservative daily, London, England

Englishman faces showdown with Mob boss in battle for an Emmy
Times Online, Conservative daily, London, England

Police Trying to Prevent Nationalist Protest
Arutz Sheva, Online, right-wing, Tel Aviv, Israel

PLO Body OKs Early Elections
Asharq Al-Awsat, Pan-Arab daily, London, England

Lebanese man shot dead in Nigeria
Gulf News, Independent daily, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Blair to visit Israel next week, says optimistic about progress
Haaretz, Liberal daily, Tel Aviv, Israel

POLITICS-US:  Partisan Lines Harden in Iraq Debate
IPS Middle East, International cooperative of journalists, Rome, Italy

Government launches interactive website - Jordan
Middle East North African Network, Online financial portal, Amman, Jordan

Taliban Gunmen Abduct South Koreans, Germans
Nahamet, Online news portal, Beirut, Lebanon

Cousseran visits Egypt to discuss Lebanon impasse
The Daily Star, Independent daily, Beirut, Lebanon

Peaceful protest turns violent at Freedom Square
Yemen Times, Independent weekly, Sana'a, Yemen

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Copyright 2007 - Migalhas International

The messages that appear in this newsletter are for informational purposes only. They are not intended to be and should not be considered legal advice nor substitute for obtaining legal advice from competent, independent, legal counsel in the relevant jurisdiction.

Transmission of this information is not intended to create, and receipt does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. The information contained on this list may or may not reflect the most current legal development.