Martindale Hubbell’s AV Rating System Dead As A Dodo

It seems fitting that the year is ending with yet another blow to the once mighty MH empire..

US based blog The Legal Water Cooler writes in a post yesterday …Is Martindale-Hubbell’s AV Rating System officially dead?


The blog goes on to report…


I received an e-mail on Friday from a peer at LexisNexis’ Martindale division notifying me that not only was she let go, so was her entire department.

I want to let you know that I will be leaving Martindale-Hubbell at the end of the month. The Rating Specialist positions for Martindale-Hubbell have been eliminated, so that means that I will not be coming to visit you to review your firm’s ratings initiatives. I am told that some of the other people who visit your firm from Martindale or LexisNexis may add the ratings items to their meetings with you.

I don’t know if this is a case of chicken or the egg, but by eliminating the Rating Specialist positions, LexisNexis has shown what their commitment to the Martindale-Hubbell Ratings System product is. Or, was it our lack of support for the Ratings product what prompted LexisNexis to abandon it?

Either way, it appears that the Martindale-Hubbell AV Ratings System is officially dead, or, at the least, on "dissolution watch."


Read the entry and comments at


We won’t feign surprise.. every part of MH looks to us as though it’s on its last legs .. Will the division survive as an entity in 2009.. we doubt it


We’ve also just come across this post by Kevin O’Keefe of Lex Blog which summs up the mood about MH


He writes:

Martindale-Hubbell taking huge beating on Twitter

Discussion of whether Martindale-Hubbell is dropping its lawyer ratings system is running rampant on Twitter today. The original discussion on Martindale-Hubbell lawyer ratings began on the blogosphere last evening.

In addition to well respected legal voices on the blogsphere and Twitter, the discussion involves some major players. Heavy influencers of opinions within the legal industry. Virtually all are asking if Martindale-Hubbell ratings are dead.

Bloggers from American Lawyer Media., the flagship online presence for the National Law Journal and American Lawyer Media, is asking on Twitter ‘[I]s Martindale-Hubbell dropping its AV Ratings?’
Marketing professional with the International Lawyers Network.
Law librarian at multi-national large law firm.
Influential contributer and leader within the Legal Marketing Association.
CEO of Avvo, an upcoming lawyer ratings website.
Perhaps to no one’s surprise, LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbell has decided to ignore the discussion. Or worse yet, does not know how.

I’m not sure LexisNexis or Martindale-Hubbell has anyone using Twitter. On an inquiry from a Twitter follower yesterday, I asked if anyone at LexisNexis, parent of Marindale used Twitter. No one responded.

Worse yet for Martindale-Hubbell the discussion is generating negative comments about the company on other fronts. One well respected legal knowledge management professional commented that maybe eliminating ratings was to emphasize Marindale-Hubbell Connected. But he said ‘Conected,’ Martindale’s upcoming social networking site which he tried is ‘a mess.’ Others are commenting that Martindale-Hubbell has been dead in general for a long time.

Martindale-Hubbell’s lack of understanding of the impact of social media is telling here. How can Martindale credibly ask firms to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars in subscriptions so the firms can participate in Martindale’s upcoming social networking site when it appears to influencers in legal marketing that Martindale is a ship without a rudder and not capable of handling social networking/media in dealing with its own affairs?

Bill Pollak (@wpollak), CEO of Incisive Media (owner of American Lawyer Media) is a regular participant in Twitter discussions. Bill’s proven that an innovative leader in the legal field can effectively use social media.

A Twitter discussion got going over the last weekend dissing an article in the National Law Journal about the risks in using Twitter. Bill jumped right in explaining the point of the article. Not only was the issue diffused, but Bill was perceived as someone who wants to listen to and get to know his customers.

For a graphic on the Martindale-Hubbell discussion for just the last few hours, see the Martindale-Hubbell Twitter Search below.