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f/k/a archives . . . real opinions & real haiku

May 26, 2005

“f/k/a” or “fka” ?

Filed under: pre-06-2006 — David Giacalone @ 4:54 pm

As part of my anniversary contemplations today, I have pondered whether to

take the slashes out of the name of this weblog — changing “f/k/a” to “fka.”

I have at times complained about a few other weblogs that use punctuation

marks and other non-alphabetic symbols in their names (this site, I am happy to

say, is now parentheses-free in its masthead).


My deliberations were short, however.  Although both f/k/a and fka have        / / / . .

been used to denote “formerly known as,” I am definitely keeping “f/k/a,”


  • it is the preferred and customary legal usage, and the

    original form of this handy term (being born in an era

    era that was far less addicted to acronyms)

  • it was first chosen by me precisely so that I would stop

    changing the name of the website

  • it does not cause confusion between us and Australia’s

What cinched the retention of f/k/a, however, was my Googling of

of the term “fka”.   Among the first few results was an organization 

known as The Federation and Klingon Alliance.  Sorry, but Walter

Olson is more likely to call his site ATLA: Arrest Them Lawyers

Association, than I am to share an acronmyn with the dudes at

FKA.  (see this post)




“tinyredcheck” Donald at All Deliberate Speed and Mike at Crime & Federalism have

been pondering a much more important issue: how should your career

choice within the law relate to your professed philosophical, religious

or political beliefs about serving the “least of your brethren” or creating

a better society?  This is a topic that deserves much more thought

and time than I can give to it today.  I will say, however, (1) that far too

many members of our profession on the right and left — despite their

purported beliefs and willingness to readily condemn the actions of

others seem to give no thought at all to the effects of their advocacy

and their labors; and (2) it is far harder to practice law ethically in a profit-

driven law practice, representing profit-driven clients, than in “public”

interest” practices; and I greatly admire private practice attorneys

who manage to do so.


fedupski  Ethan Lieb at Prawfsblog asks whether a weblogger has ethical

duties related to posting about topics that he or she is treating in an

amicus brief.  Also, John Steele at Legal Ethics Forum asks more

broadly about ethical obligations of lawyers who write amicus

briefs.  You editor-provocateur left the following question at each


“What about an ethical responsibility to tell the client

that amicus briefs have almost no bang for the buck?

They are mostly ignored and very rarely have any impact?”

(see, e.g., the recent remarks of Justices Ginsberg amd O’Connor)

Shouldn’t a lawyer make sure a client is fully aware of this reality, even

if the client initiates the idea of using an amicus brief? What else does  

giving independent advice, free of self-interest, and putting the client’s

interests first, mean?



May 23, 2005, on the implications of the two pending telecom mega-

mergers,on future competition, with emphasis on the issues raised by

the digital revolution.  There have been quite a bit of press coverage:

e.g., Washington Times/UPI, Telecom Merger Opposition Grows, May

24, 2005; National Journal, “Analyst Says Telecom Mergers Pose

Serious Threat to Competition”)


window view —

all grays 

and one blooming lilac bush





leaving her place —

a hug

you’d give a friend


                              [May 26, 2005]


we enter our terrible two’s

Filed under: pre-06-2006 — David Giacalone @ 3:19 am

Just about everybody who’s anybody has already had his or her
2nd (or third) weblog anniversary.  Nonetheless, I can’t let May 26th
pass without noting that:
  • two years ago today, the first ethicalEsq post appeared
  • one year ago today, f/k/a was born, with haikuEsq taking boy writing flip
    over as Editor, and Prof. Yabut forced into emeritus status
    (a new no-punditry policy was also announced, but temptation
    soon proved too great; see About)
Last May 26th, we even made a good faith attempt to join in the spirit of
the Annual Grump Out.  Happily, no one told us they moved the event to
May 25 for 2005, and we inadvertently missed it. Despite any zen-ny haiku
pretensions, we’re still card-carrying members of Curmudgeons-R-Us.
prof yabut (small) I don’t know whether weblogging is caused by a gene or a virus, but
I surely have the malady.  I’m grateful the technology came about at a time when I
was searching for a way to be productive (despite health problems), and when
I had a lot that I wanted to say about the legal profession and about the wonders
of haiku.  A couple dozen regular visitors would have kept me going, but I’m
most grateful to have many times that number.  Similarly, finding a couple of
great haiku poets to share with you would have felt like quite an accomplish-
ment — but, as of this week, there are two dozen of the best English-language
haijin appearing here everyday and archived for repeat enjoyment.
crawl and laugh–
from this morning on
a two year old!

translated by David G. Lanoue
Our terrible two’s will bring you more of the same (hopefully, without tantrums),  boy writing
and we may even have a few new tricks. Thanks again to all the search engine
folk who make it easy for inquisitive strangers to find our unique blend of legal
ethics, potluck punditry and haiku advocacy.  Thanks to my weblog colleagues
who give me their inspiration and their links.  (especially you, you, you, you, you,
as well as you, and you plus others too numerous to mention at 3 AM). Most
of all, thanks to our guest poets and to our loyal visitors (especially the handful
of frequent commentors) for making the f/k/a-ethicalEsq experience so rewarding
for Your Editor and all the alter egos who inhabit this space.
blowCandlesN . . and one for good luck!

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