2015.85: Reputation Management Expert Patrick Zarrelli Weighs In

Thus spake Patrick Zarrelli:

We called you honestly and professionally about our client. We work in cyber bullying, a real field, that’s important. You instantly began to swear at me, after admitting that you and Greenfield are friends who support each others blogs for SEO purposes. In this case to SEO under my clients name for advertising. Then when I told you why I called, and you realized you had exposed yourself and Greenfield in possible unethical advertising practices you freaked. Based on this article I cant tell your still angry and its clouding your judgment.

There is nothing honest or ethical about this article or your advertising techniques. Now you say im on cocaine because I dare call you on the phone politely? That’s really dishonest my friend. Im sorry your so angry, but what you are doing here is dark, unethical, and not benefiting of a lawyer or the bar you licensed under.

All it is, is text book, cyber bullying. Posted for no other purpose except to hurt others, and encourage your friends, and fellow unethical marketers, to join in on the personal attack of an honest person.

Bullshit, Zarrelli.

You are not a “professional.” You are a born loser trying to muddle by, a socially retarded 36-year-old man-child with a string of failures who is still trying to figure out why the world has stopped handing things to him on a silver platter.

That’s okay. Most people are more or less like that. People who smoke a lot of weed don’t mature; this is not a world that hands things to people on silver platters; most entrepreneurs fail serially.

You called to try to extort me with threats of frivolous grievances. You asked me if I was Greenfield’s friend, and I told you I was. I’d never deny that. I hung up on you, and you called back to continue making your threats. You claimed that you knew more free-speech law than me, and I told you not to threaten, but to do it. The rest—SEOing your client’s name for advertising—is but a product of your fevered imagination.

Greenfield wrote a blog post about you this morning. One post. The only time he has mentioned your name.  He published two hours ago. When I google your name—just <Patrick Zarrelli>—Greenfield’s posts comes up in the #5 slot, after your carefully cultivated social-media pages. When I google <Patrick Zarrelli reputation management> it’s the first hit. Nobody had to do any SEO to make that happen; I hadn’t linked to it until just now. It’s just Scott’s blog, which Google absolutely loves.

Scott’s blog has Google Pagerank 6. You do not have anything that compares. His post about you will be at the top of Google search results by the end of the day, and it will stay there for as long as you want to keep playing.

Google loves Scott’s blog (and likes mine, but not in that way) because it isn’t marketing. Scott gets up early every morning and writes two or three blog posts about whatever the hell he wants to write about. People read him, and think, or laugh, or become outraged, and they comment and share. There is no call to action, no bragging about his legal talent or his latest win. Scott isn’t writing to get clients, he’s writing because writers gotta write.

Scott and I both wrote about your purported client Gary Ostrow because Ostrow did something that was in our respective wheelhouses: he put out a press release claiming to be taking high-profile cases. That press release is still there.

Why would that be interesting to us? Because not everybody thinks like you and Gary Ostrow do. Not everyone sees everything as marketing. Some of us think that educating and entertaining, being educated and entertained, are more important than attracting more money.

Anyway, there is no way in the world that pointing and laughing at Gary Ostrow’s foolishness (or yours) is going to bring Greenfield or me a single client.

So anyway, I guess that’s a digression. A little insight for you.

A man does not threaten to do things. If you’re going to do something, do it. If you’re not, don’t.

I don’t like being threatened. If you happen to threaten me, I will not respond with threats. I will brush it off, or I will strike.

I don’t like being grieved. I’ve been grieved before for the content of my blog. I’ve even been sued for the content of my blog. Nothing has ever taken. The inconvenience has ranged from piddly to moderate.

I don’t like having people tell me what I can and can’t say. I’d suffer major inconvenience rather than cave to a censor. There are blogging lawyers who would cower in the face of a grievance threat; I am not one of these lawyers. Defending free speech is what I do for a living; I’m not going to give up my own free speech for convenience’s sake.

So when you tried to extort me by threatening to file a grievance against me for the content of my blog, I have to admit that it pushed my buttons. I could have told you that it’d push Greenfield’s buttons as well.

As a result, your client’s reputation has suffered. You’ve made it about yourself, and your client’s reputation will suffer more because he is yoked to you.

It’s not my job to teach you anything, Patrick—that should have been your parents’ task—but I offer a pointer for the other aspiring reputation managers who might stumble across this post. Because criminal-defense lawyers are the OG reputation managers:

Know your audience. Before you make a run at a guy, figure out what is going to help your client most. You only get one chance to get it right, and if you get it wrong and try to threaten a guy who won’t be threatened, you’ve failed. When it comes to reputation management, success is fleeting, but failure is forever.

16 Comments

  1. The irony of all this, is that even though I would likely have already had you at the top of my list should I need a First Amendment or serious criminal attorney, now that I have watched the utter ass-kicking you have given this moron, it only serves to do what he accuses your original article of: advertise that if you need a lawyer to hand out an ass-kicking, call Mark Bennett.

  2. I just left a courthouse in Louisiana and was reminded that not all attorneys are trial lawyers. While idle threats may scare many attorneys, those of us who walk among the dead have no fear… I feel genuine sorrow and pitty for this kid. He didn’t know who how dangerous the waters are in which he now treads…

  3. His promotion of his mad internet skillz on his FaceBook page have evaporated. A handful of FaceBook followers and a few hundred Twitter followers is not indicative of someone who understands successful market reach. This guy clearly did not realize what he was getting into before shooting off his mouth.

  4. Having read Scott Greenfield’s blog first thing, I was amused.
    Then I read the techdirt artile. Now I was laughing.
    It linked to your original blog, which was fairly restrained but oh so nice. Now I was chortling.
    Then I read this.

    THANK YOU FOR MAKING MY FRIDAY!

    Ehud Gavron
    helicopter pilot and champion of rights
    Tucson AZ US

  5. Dang Mark, you haven’t been stung like that since that East Texas lawyer accused you of using the rules to your client’s advantage.

  6. I stumbled upon this blog today, and all I can think is, “Is this really how lawyers behave in America?” I would be ashamed to have any professional affiliation with Mark Bennett. This is beyond childish.

  7. You guys forgot to mention, Zarrelli, runs with Sno Kone Joe. Google it if your not familiar, you should have some fun with that one too.

  8. Great job Mark, Patrick Zarrelli is a cocaine snorting con man who has been ripping off local Florida businesses for years. He was a bartender at Dicey’s downtown, started a magazine called BeachFront News and stiffed the printing company for 23,000. He then sold ads in the South Florida Chronicle for thousands, claiming he was distributing 50k per month, but spent all the money on cocaine and only printed a few hundred to show his clients. He has fought with other media outlets such as New Times by celebrating when they laid off staff members. Yes, he’s a giant piece of shit.
    PS, if you trace the IP addresses of any of the comments that support him, they are from him. He’s completely broke and spends all his time attacking people on the web and through threats on the phone.

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