Sunday, March 1, 2009

"Why Do You Blog?"

I am occasionally asked this question. When I explain that I blog to share an idea or experience that might offer a new or different perspective on an issue, the standard responses are a perfunctory "Oh, that's nice" or "sounds like a lot of work." Sometimes people will nod their heads and not say much of anything (translated: I really don't know what you're talking about and/or really don't care).

I'm fine with all of it. And that's because I know my place in the vast expanse of the Internet world. The Internet is changing the way we do business, stay in contact with friends, get our news, and choose products and services. Blogs are like engines--some are huge and produce alot of power, and some are smaller. I liken my blog to a little 5 hp engine that sits in the corner of the garage and hopefully starts on the first pull and cranks out some work each week.

Recently I was thinking about the lessons I've learned in over 20 years as a trial lawyer who represents people injured in all sorts of preventable calamities. The biggest lesson: that people who are hurt the worst generally complain the least. Many have fought back from ground zero: comas, brain injuries, learning to walk and talk and read again. It's amazing what they learn to celebrate and appreciate, like learning to feed or dress themselves again. Suprisingly, they are hardly ever as angry or bitter as I expect them to be. I'm no psychologist but I can only generally observe that the survival mechanism of simply fighting and clawing to get back what was lost leaves little time or energy for bitterness. And any anger tends to be compartmentalized.

I've seen this phenomenon over and over again. It is counterintuitive to how accident victims are commonly portrayed by those seeking limits on lawsuits. These victims are often painted as opportunists who are exaggerating their losses and looking to cash in on some "litigation lottery." There are lots of reasons for this belief, which I've written about previously here and here, but the root causes are insurance industry propaganda and our profession's own self inflicted wounds.

It's truly a shame, because it's yet another example of perception not squaring with reality when it comes to things like lawsuits. And if this blog helps to give certain groups a voice or set a story straight, it's worth firing up the little engine.


j said...

you are the "little engine that could". blog on!

larry hackenberg said...

Brian,I enjoyed reading about your blogging,and must admit I am probably more than a little bit like the person you said just kinda of dropped their head and nodded.In my case I just didn't understand,but I am interested.

Larry Hackenberg