Not legal advice!
So many reader questions come in that are beyond what The Legal Genealogist can answer in this blog, because they’re asking for legal advice. Um… that’s not what this blog is all about. Not what this blog can do.
It’s necessary, or at least advisable, to explain every so often some of the limits on what I’m up to here at The Legal Genealogist. You know, the little things, like making sure I don’t get sued and the furniture isn’t trashed in a brawl.
So here, at the beginning of my seventh year of blogging, let me take the opportunity to repeat these…
The rules of my road.
I’m not your lawyer.
I have a law degree. But I’m not your lawyer. I’m not even in active practice as a lawyer any more. I’m not licensed in your state, and I’m not giving legal advice online. We don’t have an attorney-client relationship, so anything you say can be held against you. If you get sued because of something I say here, I won’t represent you. I won’t even testify for you. I will, however, be enormously amused.
Seriously, this blog is general commentary on lots of things, including general commentary on the law. If you’re looking for more than general commentary on the law, you need to consult a lawyer in your home state. If you think this is more than general commentary on the law, you do need to consult a professional… but not of the legal variety.
I could be wrong.
In case you hadn’t noticed, I’m (gasp) human. Which means, at any given time, on any given matter, I could be wrong. If I’m wrong about a fact, I’d like to know it.
I hadn’t been blogging three weeks yet before I was delighted when Donn Devine told me about early Delaware statutes I hadn’t been aware of, or, later, when Peter Hirtle set me straight on how the King James Bible is covered by a Crown patent. I wasn’t quite so happy to discover that a bunch of the links in a key calendar blog post were just wrong and had to be corrected. But… sigh… I’m human.
So tell me when you know more than I do or I’ve just plain goofed. As to everything else, don’t buy what I say uncritically; check the sources I cite and make your own decisions. You may well come to a different conclusion.
It appears that people selling (probably counterfeit) Coach bags and (undoubtedly overpriced) sports jerseys think that the comments area on genealogy blogs should be their personal playgrounds. Uh uh. Not here. And especially not the dolt who thought this lifelong New York Giants fan would be happy with a comment touting Tom Brady jerseys. Well, maybe… depending on whether I could dictate what was on the jersey…
It appears that the extreme fringes of the political spectrum have people sitting out there, trolling every single nook and cranny of the Internet, looking for places where they can pop up and spew their conspiracy theories. The political situation here in the United States has only made it worse.
Bleah. A pox on all your houses. If you haven’t got anything substantive to say about genealogy, it ain’t going live here. And if it sneaks by me at first, it’ll get deleted when I spot it. (But see below as to “My turf. My rules.”)
Play nice. We’re not all ever going to agree with each other on everything. But disagreeing doesn’t have to be disagreeable. So no personal attacks, ever.
My turf. My rules.
And last but hardly least, I pay the bills for this website. I don’t accept advertising and I don’t charge admission. Which means that this is my turf. Which means that I get to set the rules. So no, I’m probably not making your comment live if you don’t provide a real email address. I can stop you from commenting if I think you’re being an annoying pest. I really don’t have to talk about an issue if I choose not to. And I don’t have to stop talking about something that I do want to talk about (that includes the very few times I can’t help myself from saying something you might construe as political or that may actually be political). Your freedom of speech doesn’t mean that you can interfere with mine. It means that you’re free to do exactly the same thing … on any website where you pay the bills and you set the rules.
Enjoy your blog and your rules
Thanks so much!
Seems so easy and basic, right? But then, if it were, you wouldn’t have to post this message 😉 Thanks for all you do here and the genealogy community at large, Judy.
Thanks for the kind words, Rorey! Yeah, it does seem simple, but… little in life is as easy as we think it should be… 🙂
Your rules should go without saying, but then there is always that one person!! Thanks so much for continuing to write – don’t know what I’d do without your great blog in my reading life!!
Aw… thanks so much, Diana!
I ditto all the above. Your blog is an inspiration, and it’s the one I depend on to keep me on my toes, and never forget to check the law of the time. I carry a library card for the law libraries of Massachusetts, because you made me aware of how important it was to know the law of the time. Thank you for all you do.
I am so jealous of you folks in Massachusetts who have those wonderful PUBLIC law libraries! Good for you for making use of them.
I enjoy all your writings, even tho’ I’m in Australia. I periodically review the blog I follow. Yours is one I would never consider deleting.Please keep writing.
May 2018 be a great year for you and yours.
While this post changes little over the years, I read it every time because it is so entertaining (and informative!). I have also happily, um, appropriated the phrase “this is a general commentary on the law and not legal advice”. 😉
Love this and Kudos for all of the above “Rules”.
Enjoy your blog and it is always if not educational, at the very least entertaining!
I love your just the facts with “rules” blog. Your sage advise “first do no harm” was warmly received. Many thanks.
I enjoyed you in Brentwood TN in November at the yearly seminar, I may be old, but I learn something every day. Thank you for sharing and I hope you have a great day. Bettie Sue in Middle TN
Yay! I completely agree, and love the way you say it!
Thanks for the kind words!
Want to ask about if you have heard of genecove.com?
A free dna site
I have seen the website but have no information about the company or who’s behind it and I can never recommend sharing DNA data with a website that does not disclose a whole lot more than that it’s owned by a corporation.