Even More FindLaw Link Spam

It’s amazing this site is still alive and kicking.  Just how many link scandals can FindLaw live through?

There’s a post today from LawDeeDa exposing FindLaw’s bot spamming of their directory.  Now, I’ve never heard of LawDeeDa or founder Brint Crockett before, but I do have quite a history with legal directories and the spam game played by FindLaw.  Brint’s done some very good sleuthing  exposing just how brazen FindLaw’s linkbuilding program has become.

In Summary:  LawDeeDa found their attorney profiles were being hacked by a single IP address in India – according to Brint, “every single falsified attorney profile whose identity I could confirm had the same law firm marketing agency:  Findlaw.”   Brint goes on to detail an email correspondence between himself and FindLaw – most interesting the flagrant admission from FindLaw about their linkbuilding spam not only on LawDeeDa, but other sites as well:

“These directory profiles were added on behalf of FindLaw customers in accordance with the LawDeeDa.com Terms and Conditions of Use, “17. User Posted Content & Other Interactive Services or Areas.” Based on your concerns we have removed LawDeeDa.com from the list of directories we’ll send submissions to as of 5:00 PM on March 5.” – Mark Kalthoff of FindLaw

Welcome to the fray Brint.  I’ll buy buy you a beer.

If your law firm is listed below, know that at least according to LawDeeDa, FindLaw is working hard on your behalf spamming the search engines.  May I suggest a review of the FindLaw Jailbreak Guide?

Caught Up in FindLaw Spambot

 

  • Adam J Schwartz, Attorney at Law
  • Anderlini & McSweeney LLP
  • Angela Scarlato & Associates
  • Arthur David Malkin, Attorney at Law.
  • Assalone & Associates
  • Attorney Ronald Polan
  • Ayers, Whitlow & Dressler
  • Barbara L. Jouette, Attorney, P.C.
  • Barry Seidel & Associates, Attorneys at Law
  • Bills & Smith, LLP
  • Binder & Binder
  • Binder & Binder
  • Bohbot & Riles, LLP Attorneys at Law
  • Brian McCaffrey Attorney at Law
  • Bryan P. Keenan & Associates, PC
  • Bryant Whitten, LLP
  • Bull & Davies, P.C.
  • Butler Daniel & Associates, P.L.L.C.
  • Carolann Aschoff PC
  • Caroselli Beachler McTiernan & Conboy, L.L.C.
  • Christina A. Marino
  • Christopher A. Wellborn, P.A.
  • Ciancio Ciancio Brown, P.C.
  • Ciesla & Ciesla, P.C.
  • Clark, Love & Hutson
  • Dallas W. Hartman P.C. Attorneys at Law
  • David Coffin PLLC
  • David Holmes, Bankruptcy Law
  • David Low, P.A.
  • David Yeremian & Associates
  • Denlow & Henry
  • Disability Rights Law Center – Alex Boudov, Attorney at Law
  • Dorazio Law Office
  • Dozier Law Firm
  • Edgar Law Firm LLC
  • Edward R. La Rue
  • Eglet Wall Christiansen
  • Ellis Law, P.C.
  • Finkelstein & Goldman PC
  • Foglia & Associates, P.C.
  • Fox & Fox, S.C.
  • Gigliotti & Gigliotti
  • Ginsburg & Redmond, P.C.
  • Godoy Olivieri, Ltd
  • Goldstein & Sutor, PLLC
  • Gori Julian & Associates, P.C.
  • Graham & Associates Law Offices, LLC
  • Gregory C. Starkey & Associates
  • Hadas Law Group, LLC
  • Hallauer Law Firm
  • Harwell, Brown & Harwell, P.C.
  • Higgins, Roberts & Suprunowicz, P.C.
  • Hill Macdonald LLC
  • Horak & Boyd, PLLC
  • Irom, Wittels, Freund, Berne & Serra
  • J. Kelly Kennedy, Attorney/CPA
  • Jacobs & Dodds
  • Jacobs & Jacobs LLC
  • Jameson Babbitt Stites & Lombard PLLC
  • John C. Jones, Attorney at Law
  • John D. Smith Co., L.P.A.
  • John E. Fitzgerald, Attorney at Law
  • Johnston Law Group, PC
  • Jonas Price, LLC
  • Jonathan Feldman, Attorney at Law
  • Judge John E. Turner (Ret.)
  • Kaplan & Seifter
  • Kathryn T. Joseph & Associates, Inc.
  • Kathryn Williams, P.A.
  • Kaufman, Payton & Chapa
  • Keis George LLP
  • Kelton & Teichner
  • Kenneth F. Bromet, Attorney at Law
  • Kevin Qualls Family Law
  • Knight Law Firm
  • Knight Law Firm
  • Laura Dale & Associates P.C.
  • Law Advocate Group, LLP
  • Law Office of Daniel W. Dunbar
  • Law Office of Esperanza Cervantes Anderson
  • Law Office of Henry B. LaTorraca
  • Law Office of Jennifer Zorrilla
  • Law Office of Michael D. Weinstock, P.A.
  • Law Office of Michael E. Pitts
  • Law Office of Nicholas M. Moccia, P.C.
  • Law Office of Rebecca Garren Parker
  • Law Office of Robert Braverman, LLC
  • Law Office of Robert L. Cullen, LLC
  • Law Office of Roberta L. Edwards, P.A.
  • Law Office of Sivertson and Barrette
  • Law Office of Thomas A. Johnson
  • Law Office of Thomas P. Sinton, P.A.
  • Law Offices of Clayton R Dickenson
  • Law Offices of Dan Allan & Associates
  • Law Offices of Dischell, Bartle & Dooley, PC.
  • Law Offices of Max Benkel, P.C.
  • Law Offices of Richard Koch
  • Law Offices of Roger Ghai
  • Law Offices of Steven I. Kastner
  • Law Offices of Wilson A. LaFaurie
  • Lawrence G. Townsend, Intellectual Property Lawyer
  • Lawson & Reid, LLC
  • Leonard M. Caputo, P.C. Attorneys at Law
  • Lisette M. Spencer, Attorney At Law
  • Logan & Logan Attorneys at Law
  • Manfred Sternberg & Associates, PC
  • Marcus A. Rosin, P.C.
  • Marrone Law Firm LLC
  • Martin LLC
  • Mary V. Carrigan, Attorney at Law
  • Matt Karzen LLC
  • McKinney Law Office
  • Megan M. Collins, Attorney at Law
  • Melvin Law Firm
  • Michael P. Fleming & Associates, P.C.
  • Mission Law Group
  • Nacht, Roumel, Salvatore, Blanchard & Walker, P.C.
  • Neal Ashmore Family Law Group
  • Nickless, Phillips & O’Connor
  • Odom Law Firm
  • Oliva & Associates, ALC
  • Parvey & Frankel Attorneys, P.A.
  • Perrotta, Fraser & Forrester, LLC
  • Perry & Young, P.A.
  • Polidori Franklin & Monahan LLC.
  • Posey, Moye & Cartledge, LLP
  • Prater & Ridley Attorneys At Law
  • Pray Law Firm
  • Prestidge Law Firm, P.C.
  • QDRO Law Center
  • Rhine Martin Law Firm, P.C.
  • Richards & Richards Attorneys at Law
  • Robert D. DiDio & Associates
  • Robertson Law Firm
  • Rogers, Hofrichter & Karrh, LLC
  • Ronald W. Ramirez Attorney At Law
  • Rosenstein Law Group
  • Schwartz Law Firm
  • Shamy, Shipers & Lonski PC
  • Shelly Law Offices, LLC
  • Sherick & Bleier P.L.L.C.
  • Sherman
  • Shollenberger & Januzzi, LLP
  • Shuler Law Firm, LLC.
  • Sikov & Love P.A.
  • Skinner Law Firm L.L.C.
  • Spinella, Owings & Shaia, P.C.
  • Stolar & Associates, A Professional Law Corporation
  • The Cagle Law Firm
  • The Colleran Firm
  • The Epstein Law Firm, P.A.
  • The Gregory Law Firm
  • The Kehl Law Firm, P.C.
  • The Law Firm of Janice M. Greening, LLC
  • The Law Office of Bryan R. Snyder, APC
  • The Law Office of Bryce D Neier, PLLC
  • The Law Office of Corey I. Cohen
  • The Law Office of Troy Kiefer
  • The law offices of charles bonfante III & associates
  • The Law Offices of Heather J. Darling
  • The Law Offices of John S. Eliasik
  • The Law Offices of Judith A. Wayne & Associates
  • The Law Offices of Mark J. Werksman
  • The Law Offices of Mark Kelley Schwartz, P.C.
  • The law offices of Vincent J. Scotto III
  • The Oncale Firm
  • The Reyna Law Firm, P.C.
  • The Wilson Firm
  • The Wright Law Firm
  • Theresa Hofmeister, Attorney at Law
  • Thomas R. Lefly
  • Thompson & Evangelo, P.A.
  • Toppenberg & Burke, P.C.
  • Wade & Lowe, A Professional Corporation
  • Wallace & Wallace LLP
  • Warner Law Offices PLLC
  • Wesley, McGrail & Wesley
  • Whitlock Canter LLC
  • Wick & Trautwein, LLC
  • William E. Cassara, PC
  • William G. Yarborough Attorney at Law
  • Wilson-Goodman Law Group
  • Zimmerman, Lieberman, Tamulonis & Hobbs

(gasp) – still scrolling?  that was a long list wasn’t it?

Every Social Media Consultant is Lying to You

Lawyers – I’ll let you in on a secret . . . .

Social Media Marketing Doesn’t Work for You

There, I said it.

We’ve done it to you again – the self proclaimed mavens, experts, gurus and (self) published authors who peddle social media marketing to you guys have been lying. Or we just don’t understand how marketing works in legal.  But probably we’re lying – because we’d really like to cash your retainer to help you republish your blog posts on your Facebook page, even though there are plenty of tools that will automate that process for free.  Just like the SEOs did do. And you’ve all fallen for it again.

Now, I’m not the first person to say this, but it seems like no one is listening.  To understand social media marketing for lawyers in soundbite, consider this from Sam Glover’s anti-Facebook diatribe:  

People aren’t interested in a law firm. At best, they are interested in a particular lawyer, but normal people are about as interested in a law firm as they are interested in a proctology clinic, and for similar reasons.

Legal is NOT a Social Issue

With few exceptions, legal issues are extremely private.  I’m more likely to publicly  “like” my anti-herpes medicine than my DUI lawyer.  It’s not because I hate my lawyer – in fact I love her – its that I don’t want anyone to know that I need her because I’m facing incarceration, divorce, arrest, unemployment, deportation, or the IRS.   And if I need a lawyer for one of these private issues, there is no way on God’s green earth I’m initiating that search on anything remotely public like social media.

And this is the mistake that most self proclaimed social media experts (especially those who don’t work exclusively in legal) miss.  Standard social media marketing practice recommends building social media-based relationships with thought leaders and leveraging those individuals to expand the conversation about your brand.  This works for sneakers.  It works for religion. It works for Chevys and Harley Davidsons.  It works for soap and soup and sex toys.  It doesn’t work for lawyers.

If you personally wouldn’t start your search for a plumber on Twitter, why on earth would you imagine anyone initiate a search for a DUI attorney on Facebook?

Classic social media marketing – chasing likes and fans and pluses and followers simply does not apply to the legal marketplace.  Let’s go back to the classic social media marketing strategy – identify key influencers and leverage them to broadcast your message and shower you with likes, pluses etc.  There is simply no consumer social media key influencer built around getting divorced, or incarcerated or slipping and falling or being in an auto accident.

There is nothing more lonely that a DUI lawyer’s social media profile – which may have a few likes from his mom and law school buddies but otherwise is a barren wasteland screaming “nobody likes me”.  And stop sending out those like requests – I get plenty of them every day and nothing does less to “build a relationship with your audience” than begging for them to publicly advertise how much they like your divorce firm.

Everyone Wants Your Social Media Dollar

It seems that everyone is getting into the social media marketing game – even Lexis Nexis is happy to take your money to “Establish a Presence on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter”.  Bleh.  The Lexis Nexis marketing drivel epitomizes the huge failure of applying generic social media concepts to the very unique legal marketplace:

Half of all online conversations take place on social networks such as Facebook® and Twitter®. And 47 percent of customers say social media sites influence their decision to purchase a company’s products or services.

Join these conversations, demonstrate thought leadership and improve your search engine rankings with social media marketing from LexisNexis®.

You’d think that Lexis, being well, errr . . . Lexis, would have taken the time to survey people about how social media sites influence their decision to purchase a lawyer’s services.   But they didn’t – because they already know the answer and the social media consultants don’t want to admit it.  They’d prefer the legal industry continue to believe in the false complexity and ever falser effectiveness of this latest marketing channel fad.

Even if social media were effective in legal . . . it is simply impossible to outsource the joining of conversations, and demonstration of thought leadership.  And don’t get me started about the suggestions of the links between social and SEO – other than to say that Matt Cutts continuously insists that Google Plus’ are NOT a ranking factor.  But I digress.

The Only Thing You Need to Know About Social Media Marketing For Lawyers

If (and this is a big if) prospective clients use social to vet a prospective attorney – consider what you want them to see.  Let me give you a hint:  what you don’t want them to see is a slew of third party outsourced regurgitations of local news articles thinly related to your practice of law all ending with an identical admonishment to quickly call your law firm – vomited verbatim onto your Facebook/Twitter/LinkedIn/Google Plus.

This is what you want them to see:

Cory Hicks

This is a guy I want to hire – yes he’s a lawyer, but there’s no leather bound books, scales or justice of roman columns.  For the love of all things holy, he’s not even wearing a tie!  He’s a dad and the three most important things in his life are standing right next to him.  Kind of reminds me of me.  The is the kind of guy I’d be happy to spend some money on.  And I bet he’ll never ask me to add this silly page to my “circles.”

Or how about this guy:

Valentine's Day

This is from Jeffrey Lapin’s Google Plus account.  Jeffrey hates abusive debt collectors – and frankly, if I’m dirt broke and being harassed by some aggressive scumbag in a call center who threatens my house at every possible step I probably hate them too.  If I jump with fear when the phone rings, I’d be pretty happy if Bill the Debt Collector got dumped  by his girlfriend on Valentine’s Day and wish Bill a lonely miserable Valentine’s Day sitting in front of the TV all alone.

Jeff gets it.  He gets me.  Maybe I’ll give him a call.

And I’m sure the social media marketing peddlers will disagree . . . they’ll site the impact of social shares in driving links, they’ll mention “authorship” and assure you they can get your little picture in Google SERPs, they’ll convince you that social will improve your rankings.  Sounds like SEO to me, not social media.  There is a fundamental difference. Don’t entrust your firm’s marketing to someone who can’t make the distinction.

Oh – and if your social media marketing consultant mentions Pintrest, run screaming.

Update:  This post is getting a surprising amount of interest – so I thought I’d end it with this picture:  a post of all of the twitter results for the query:  “need accident lawyer”.  The results are embarrassing and utterly devoid of consumers starting their search for a lawyer on this most widely accessible (i.e. not through private connections) social platform.  Try a search for your own practice area here:  search.twitter.com and see if you don’t get similar results.

Need Lawyer

Why I am Lucky to Work with Amazing Clients

There’s nothing worse than people who assume they can get free advice from professional service providers.  I’ve doled out more free SEO advice than I can imagine and I know lawyers get hit up for legal advice all the time.

So when acquaintances of mine ask for an intro to a lawyer for a quick legal question, it’s always a bit dicey.  What follows is the slightly sanitized interchange between myself and one of my clients that makes it worth coming in to work every day:

Me

. . . if you can help my friend, who has a legal question, I’d be most appreciative.  If so, please send me an invoice for your time and I’ll deduct from your next bill . . .

Client

Happy to help—informally as a courtesy to you.   If you can have your friend email directly with the issue, any supporting documentation, any interview date and location, and a phone number, that would be great.  I won’t charge for that.

Me

Thanks for this.  And genuinely – charge me for it.  As a service provider myself (and being married to one), I insist on paying for advice – especially from one of my clients.

Client

Ain’t gonna happen!!!!!!!

 

At the most basic level, SEO is the practice of influencing the results in a zero sum game and sometimes I question the value we bring toe the world overall.  Exchanges like the one above put all of this in a much larger perspective.  To our amazing clients – thank you for making my day.

 

Atticus is Now Mockingbird

I started Atticus Marketing two years ago, consulting on SEO  for a few law firms as a side gig to my day job.  Today, we’ve grown into a small team of marketing experts running 30 law firm websites.  Our service offerings have expanded from SEO and include everything from design to technology to business consulting.

In doing so, we’ve bumped into a great law firm consultancy out of Florida – Atticus Inc. (great name, if I say so myself).   I had breakfast with their CEO Mark Powers at the Orlando airport and learned much about the other Atticus. Most importantly, while our product offerings are fundamentally different, they are close enough that it is genuinely confusing.

So, as of today, Atticus is being transformed into Mockingbird. I value the consistency of branding with Harper Lee’s novel and the mockingbird branding offers a little more.  In researching the brand, I ran across an article by environmental journalist, Chris Clark:  An Intro to Mockingbirds: The Noisiest, Most Aggressive Small Bird You’ll Ever Meet.  I like that headline. A lot.  And if you know me even a little bit, the metaphor extends perfectly. Here’s how Chris defines the mockingbird:

The northern mockingbird’s absolutely fearless defense of its nest probably puts it in the running for bravest animal in the desert. It certainly makes it a contender for most annoying.

You have to give mockers points for guts. When’s the last time you took on an opponent who outweighed you by a factor of 1,500? . . . . Which doesn’t mean they’re above taunting them.

Heh.  So, here’s to bravely and noisily annoying opponents who outweigh you. Watch these two little birdies tenaciously and fearlessly drive off a huge predator:

Richard Jacobs & Speakeasy Marketing – SPAMMY Legal Internet Marketer

I just got an email from a client asking for direction on a link building opportunity.  This from my client:

Conrad, we just got this message regarding link building. As we clearly know nothing about this I defer to your expertise.

Thanks,

And here’s the request, from Andrew Hudson of Speakeasy Marketing  – submitted completely cold to an online form on my client’s website.  I’ve boldfaced the most egregious parts:

From Our Law Firm to Yours – a Request

Hi,

I work for 40 different attorneys throughout The United States, and I have a simple proposition that will benefit your website and ours.

One of my attorney clients would like to Place a link from his website to your website, Which will elevate you in Google’s eyes and help You get higher up in Google results.

In return, we ask for a link from your website to A different attorney client of ours.

No money exchanges hands, the links are not Reciprocal, and both parties benefit.

This is NOT a ‘black hat’ technique, or anything That violates Googles’ terms of service.

100% straight up, legitimate, tit for tat.

Are you open to this simple arrangement?

Please reply regardless,

Andrew Hudson
73-03 Bell Blvd #10
Oakland Gardens, NY 11364
Phone# 347-329-5146
andrew@speakeasymarketinginc.com

Now, if you know anything about online marketing, you’ll know that this is entirely black hat, is entirely reciprocal (I’m not sure how Andrews misses the irony of saying “its not reciprocal”, and then mentions “tit for tat”) and entirely violative of Google’s terms of service.

Richard – when you read this, check out Google’s Guidelines on Link Schemes – although you might find this excerpt particularly insightful:

Excessive link exchanges (“Link to me and I’ll link to you”) or partner pages exclusively for the sake of cross-linking.

I checked out the site for Speakeasy Marketing and found the worst type of internet schyster – the black hat acolyte professing white hat tactics and guaranteeing magical results.  AND they specialize in legal – which I find infuriating.

 Speakeasy Marketing – Avoid at Your Peril

Let’s look at their site as a lesson in identifying red flags of SEO spammers:

Speakeasy Lawyer Marketing

Focus on Rankings

I’ve written ad nauseaum about  the dangers of ranking reports and how SEO’s use them to suggest success in the face of failure.

Guarantee Page 1

100% Success Guarantee

Nothing is guaranteed in online marketing.  Ever.  Nothing.

Guarantee - Speakeasy Marketing  No Effort Required

I’ve been doing this a long time – and the only thing I know for sure is that successful online marketing takes effort.

Speakeasy Content Automation

Disavowing Black Hat Techniques

Of course – the cruel irony here is that he’s calling out black-hat techniques while simultaneously employing them.

 

Speakeasy Lawyer Marketing SPAM

The lady doth protest too much, methinks.   

More Horrific Attorney Marketing

The online marketing industry continues working hard earning its scummy reputation among lawyers . . .

The example below is so outrageous that it looks like a parody.  But its not.  It’s real attorney advertising and someone is paying for it.  (I know because I called and spoke to the attorney behind the site.)  This started with a friend of mine in the SEO industry – Mike Blumenthal – who forwarded me an email with the subject line: gotta love the chutzpa.

Fake Third Party Endorsements

Attached was a screenshot of a footer for what looked like a law firm website, with a tiny blue on blue disclaimer in broken English:

The logos above are sample only, we are not associated with these vendors.

Footer

Hmmmm . . .  the logos include the Better Business Bureau, the California Association for Justice, The Beverly Hills Bar Association and of course, my beloved Avvo.  We know that third party endorsements go a long way to allay concerns of prospective clients of law firms, but this goes well beyond misleading.

Note that the site looks like a law firm website, yet there is absolutely no personal information about an attorney or even a law firm name.  The on-page optimization is horrendous – there are 13 instances of the phrase, “Los Angeles DUI”, keyword stuffed meta tags and of course, the exact match domain.

Fake Client Testimonials

Even the faux testimonials are keyword stuffed with SEO optimized internal links.  And try reading the text here.

False Testimonials

If you want a chuckle, read all of the “testimonials“; here’s a favorite excerpt:

“DUI attorney Los Angeles is the best law firm in Los Angeles to handle the drunk driving cases in favor of their clients.”

Fake Social Media Widgets

My favorite touch on the site is the fake Facebook like counter which suggests there are a whopping 5,100 people who have liked this non-firm on Facebook.  This one had to take some time:

Fake Facebook Widget

Fortunately, the footer also contained a link to the  website developer.  Let’s see what happens here:

Ace Online

Just about what I’d expect.  So I gave Ace a call to see if they offered online advertising.  The guy who answered the phone assured me that he could get me ranking really high on the Internets.

To Be Fair . . . .

My final step was to call the number on the DUI site itself . . . which was answered promptly and professionally (some of you could learn a lesson here) by an attorney.  I forced some awkward conversation by asking for the name of his firm and his name (and vetted him on Avvo to see if he was, in fact really an attorney.  The guy was helpful (assuming I had really just gotten out of jail on a DUI), compassionate and professional.

For all I know he has no idea that some shoddy marketing firm is being so misleading on his behalf.  Caveat emptor lawyers, caveat emptor.

 

Update:  Mike Blumenthal digs deep into how this site surfacing is a failure of Google’s Hummingbird.

1% for Good: Liddy Shriver Sarcoma Initiative

This is a crappy post to write.  Generally, I’m a few steps removed from Atticus’ 1% for Good campaigns – this time it hits home.  Courtesy of social media, I recently learned that one of my earliest Seattle friends, Sig  is undergoing treatment for Sarcoma – a connective tissue cancer usually associated with children, but occasionally cropping up in adults.

Sig on the PitchI played rugby with Sig at Old Puget Sound Beach – one of the premier rugby teams in the USA Superleague.  He’s every part the rugby player, a huge dude with the body fat of a teenage cross country star.  He looks like the love child of Ivan Drago and Arnold Schwarzenegger and specialized in laying our competitors flat on their backs.  Even his name is tough – Siegfried Kohl.  He’s also a paramedic and on many occassions was called to tape OPSB players up so they could get back on the pitch.

For this month’s 1% For Good – we’ve made a donation to The Liddy Shriver Sarcoma Initiative – which dedicates over 97% of donations to sarcoma cancer research.   Thanks to a slew of new clients, we had a record month in January – if you count among Atticus’ client base, thank you for making this possible.

Wishing you well Sig.

The First Thing to Do After You Launch Your New WordPress Site

We got a call yesterday from a law firm trying to determine why their site, that had just been completely redesigned and updated to WordPress didn’t seem to be performing.

Roughly 4 minutes into the conference call with the firm and their web designer, I discovered  . . . .

Robots

 

 

 

 

This is SEO suicide – essentially telling search engines to ignore the site.  Its a very simple setting on WordPress commonly (and appropriately) used when sites are under development.    However, when pushing the site live, you MUST manually change this setting or the site will remain invisible. Apparently the agency forgot. This is the second time we’ve seen this in the past 6 months, so I’m going to assume it is a relatively common mistake.

The easy way to check your site is to simply load the robots file – www.mywebsite.com/robots.txt and see what shows up.  WordPress’s basic (and proper) initial installation looks like this (which is what the panicked agency did during our call in about 2 minutes):

robots WP

1% For Good: Sea Shepherd

I wanted pictures of the Atticus team with sweatshirts and flag from Sea Shepherd before I revealed them as our December 1% For Good donation, but today’s photographs and reports coming out of the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary have forced my hand. While Sea Shepherd’s fulfillment for their online store may be very slow – their boats are much faster at intercepting and driving out the Japanese whaling fleet from Antarctic whaling grounds.

Sea Shepherd

Sea Shepherd captain, Canadian Paul Watson has been combating the Japanese whaling fleet for years and has been featured on the show, Whale Wars. The Japanese fleet exploits a loophole in International Law to “harvest” whales for scientific purposes – supplying whale meat to the Japanese consumer market. According to yesterday’s statement by Sea Shepherd – they have driven the whaling fleet out of the southern whaling grounds.

Along with yesterday’s statement, Sea Shepherd released  images of 3 minke harpooned whales, as well as the gruesome bloody video of a whale being butchered on the deck.  Hardly “scientific study.”

Watson is facing numerous legal concerns – and while the organization may take heat from some within the legal community for their actions – we are very happy to offer a small piece of financial support to Sea Shepherd’s efforts to publicize and stop the slaughter of whales.

Update: Recently, the attorney who represents Sea Shepherd did an interview on KEXP to discuss his work with the organization and the recent U.N. court ruling to end Japan’s whale huntington. You can see it here on his blog article, ‘Why I Represent Sea Shepherd‘.