Avvo Changes Ratings Scheme

Amid controversy, legal vertical Avvo has introduced a simplified ratings scheme for some lawyers with limited public data available. Here’s CEO Mark Britton’s explanation of the change:

Where we have only a lawyer’s licensing records, we will display an Avvo Rating for the lawyer of either “Attention” or “No Concern.” We display the “Attention” rating if there is information in the licensing records that, in our opinion, a consumer should pay attention to, such as a disciplinary action against a lawyer without offsetting positive information. If an “Attention” rating is not warranted, then we display a “No Concern” rating, which essentially says, “no red flags, only positive information found.”

The ratings, the site’s central value proposition and marketing hook, have become something of a lightening rod for controversy, spawning a lawsuit. Here are my two post on Avvo at launch (SEL, Screenwerk).

The central challenge for Avvo is to accurately reflect the quality and qualifications of attorneys without suffering “ratings inflation” where everyone is a 9 or better. But this is extremely difficult.

As I earlier indicated, searches I performed on law school classmates and former legal colleagues revealed scores between 6-7, which appear to be mediocre despite the fact that I know these people are excellent attorneys.

My belief is that the ultimate value resides not in the ratings themselves — though perhaps the system can be more finely tuned over time to improve their accuracy — but in the user-generated content and attorney profiles that will grow over time.


One Response to “Avvo Changes Ratings Scheme”

  1. Ingenio and LexisNexis in PPCall Deal « Screenwerk Says:

    […] San Francisco, which offers a generally bland “Web 1.0″ experience. Legal ratings site Avvo is a “Web 2.0″ competitor of […]

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: