How to Feed a Lawyer (and Other Irreverent Observations from the Legal Underground)

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David Giacalone

Just as we webloggers have our Referer lists, don't lawyers with Google AdSense ads have information on which sites were the source of their click-through visitors? If so, a little diligence could certainly help root out inappropriate sites quickly.

Oh, did I suggest diligence? Next, I'll be expecting fiduciary duty in the context of legal fees. Never mind, wrong profession.


David: To answer your question: I think lawyers could get some information about click-throughs, but this wouldn't tell them where their ads were appearing unless they had a click-through.

For my firm's website, I have a service that keeps track of hits and referring sites. I think that at least in some cases, I can tell from which website a Google Ad click-through is coming. The Google Ad might be appearing in other places that don't generate click-throughs. I'll test it out later.

You would think that Google would keep track of the referral information we're talking about, but I don't think it does.

David Giacalone

I wasn't suggesting that you would know perfectly every site where your ad appears, but -- unless the site produces no click-throughs for any advertising lawyers -- it would certainly provide a heads-up rather quickly to somebody in the profession (a situation far better than the notion that it is impossible to tell where lawyer ads keyed to a particular word are appearing). Also, it's not until someone clicks-through to a firm from an inappropriate site that the advertising law firm could be said to be benefitting from appearing on such a site. If such lists of click-through sources exist, a law firm cannot simple say "how could we know or possibly check up on such things?"

Since Google charges the advertiser for every click-through, it's hard to believe that they don't know where the click is coming from. Also, doesn't Google have a page where you can input a key word and see where it would be showing up at any particular moment?

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