Someone at Google has woken up, a little belatedly I think, to realize that the Web is in large part about publicizing (I won’t say “exposing”) oneself and that they are the doormen, so to speak, of the Web. Sure, you could always — and did often — Google yourself, but there had to be something out there to find. In came Facebook and other webs within the Web, of course, and that took care of that: now it’s no longer a matter of Googling yourself: you are on Facebook (MySpace, Linkedin, and now .tel) or you’re not available in the world.
Google’s late-to-the-party “hey, me too!” is their new Profile. If you go to http://www.google.com/profiles, you can enter data about yourself that will be found whenever anyone enters your name into the search engine. The input form allows you to enter the typical sort of information you’d expect: name, photo, schools attended, places lived… ; and there’s a place to enter some biographical information of your choosing. You can, as well, enter contact information (phone numbers, emails addresses, etc.) and control who is able to view it, as you would with a dot tel domain.
I’m not saying this is useless. I think that it’s probably sensible for many if not most lawyers to create a Google Profile suitable for potential clients to use. But I am suggesting that this is likely to be useful to those prospective clients, for example, who haven’t for some reason or other turned to Facebook et al. to scope you out.