January 16, 2009
Some Changes at Asbestos.com
I haven't done a really careful look, but they've at least removed the references to the site being a resource since 1995.
They've also updated the disclaimer and it's much more detailed and, in my view, a much clearer statement:
Asbestos.com is currently being sponsored by Brent Coon and Associates, LLC and The Peterson Firm, LLC. Brent Coon and Associates, whose principal office is located at 3550 Fannin Street, Beaumont, TX 77701 , has attorneys licensed to practice in numerous states throughout the country and has 17 offices located from coast to coast. The Peterson Firm's office is located at: 20 N. Orange Ave - Suite 400, Orlando, Florida 32801. The Peterson Firm is licensed by the Florida Bar Association to practice law within the state of Florida. If the Brent Coon and Associates or the Peterson Firm undertakes representation of a client it may do so with assistance of co-counsel in the state where the case is filed. Neither Brent Coon and Associates or The Peterson Firm will share any personal information with any other party, with the exception that in certain circumstances you may be contacted directly by co-counsel for the purpose of evaluating a potential claim. Asbestos.com, Brent Coon and Associates and The Peterson Firm are separate and distinct entities. Asbestos.com is in part owned by an attorney concentrating in asbestos litigation.
Note the final sentence in particular.
Update: The site has reverted to the prior design and language. Mr. Apelado wrote me this morning, saying that this is a technical issue but that the reversion to the previous version of the site is temporary.
TrackBack URL for this entry:
Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Some Changes at Asbestos.com:
» Asbestos.com, cont'd from PointOfLaw Forum
Bill Childs at TortsProf does some more investigating (earlier). Did his sleuthing get the site to be more forthright about its sponsorship, or not? And what of the separate site Asbestos.net, whose fine print claims that it is "not owned... [Read More]
Tracked on Jan 21, 2009 9:04:44 PM
Tracked on Sep 14, 2009 8:08:00 PM
Interesting, but I noticed a similar site- www.asbestos.net
The site says "helping mesothelioma victims for over ten years" and is eerily similar to asbestos.com. I called the number and reached the same gentlemen you have been posting about. Very deceptive and very interesting indeed.
Posted by: someonefollowing | Jan 18, 2009 7:02:15 AM
As someone who works for a competitor I doubt the validity of the above comment. While asbestos.net has a very ambiguous disclaimer I don't see a connection to asbestos.com.
Can you provide more information? Did you physically call their number and ask for Mr. Apelado?
Posted by: DL | Jan 19, 2009 11:14:43 AM
DL, I think you're right. I'd looked and reached a similar conclusion but had not yet gotten around to doing enough digging to do a full post.
Posted by: Bill Childs | Jan 19, 2009 1:43:41 PM
However asbestos.net makes a similar claim to the previously discussed asbestos.com.
The site displays on the main page the tagline "... Online Since 1997!" when according to archive.org the site was used by a McGill faculty member for most of its history.
I think the one thing these posts really illustrate is the disconnect between lawyers and their marketing staff (or companies used to create/maintain sites).
While lawyers read through the fine print of disclaimers, claims and information ... they often fail to pass this same level of "thorough thinking" to their marketing staff. If it hadn't been for the post you wrote last week, Asbestos.com would still have some of the inaccuracies mentioned.
It's not that lawyers at BC or Peterson are trying to mislead the public, rather its the fact that they don't pass on the same logic/attitude of "make sure you can backup your claims" to marketing staff who should know better.
Posted by: DL | Jan 19, 2009 2:17:11 PM
A little more digging. Turns out that asbestos.net is owned by a gentleman who owns a number of domains. But wait a second... One of those sites is another website named mesolink.org... Yes you guessed it- sponsored by your friend Peterson. Coincidence? These lawyers suing companies and putting american workers out of work need to be shut down.
Posted by: someonefollowing | Jan 19, 2009 8:40:04 PM
Posted by: someonefollowing | Jan 19, 2009 8:43:05 PM
I would expect it's someone who runs lead-generating sites for a number of firms. Given the degree of competition, I doubt it's a connection directly between the firms so much as just someone running multiple sites. Interesting finds, in any event.
I agree that there is a significant problem with many similar sites, and it's certainly not limited to asbestos.com. I've previously written about spam e-mails seeking clients for Avandia and other pharma tort cases and so on; either the lawyers aren't paying sufficient attention and communicating clearly enough with their marketing people or they simply aren't acting responsibly.
Posted by: Bill Childs | Jan 20, 2009 6:49:00 AM
I handle marketing for a direct competitor of this firm. Here is a list of the sites I'm aware of that are owned and/or operated by the Peterson firm. I'm sure it is not an exhaustive list, just what I am able to come up with off the top of my head:
http://www.asbestos.com - Find on google for keywords: mesothelioma, asbestos, mesothelioma lawyer, etc...
http://www.mesolink.org - Site was banned from google for illicit promotion practices. Ranked #1 on google for keyword mesothelioma for years.
http://www.freewebs.com/mesothelioma/ - Find on google for keyword: mesothelioma
http://www.lawcore.com - Find it on google for keywords: lawyer, dui lawyer, car accident lawyer, etc...
http://www.1800probate.com - Find on google for keyword: probate lawyer
http://www.cleanwaterpartners.org - Find on google for keyword: benzene
http://www.skinassn.org - Find on google for keyword: sjs, Stevens-Johnson Syndrome, etc...
Their m.o. is to spam google with links from hit counters to achieve rankings and sign up clients across the country. If you think they are breaking the marketing rules for lawyers,i can assure you the marketing folks are breaking all the rules with impunity from google as well. Google is completely unresponsive to requests to ban the sites. It may take more than one person to get up in arms over these folks.
Posted by: mesomarketer | Feb 23, 2009 9:08:52 AM
Yes Asbestos.com is an industry leading in providing quality information to Asbestos & malignant lung cancer patients. A similar upcoming website is targeted at Malignant Mesothelioma located @ http://www.researchmalignantmesothelioma.com/ Is this one owned by Brent Coon and Associates, LLC and The Peterson Firm, LLC as well?
An excerpt from the site is: Every 1.1 people out of 100,000 in the United States is diagnosed with Mesothelioma lung cancer each year. High concentrations of diagnosis occur in the Pacific to mid-Atlantic states such as Alaska, California, Oregon & Washington. Alaska for instance houses a large # of shipbuilding factories such as Fort Richardson of the US Army. Other common facilities in Alaska that can easily exposed workers to Asbestos include paper mills & oil refineries such as Union Oil Company, BP Oil - North Slope Location, Alaska Steam Compressor Plant, etc.
Posted by: Malignant Mesothelioma | Oct 7, 2009 8:55:46 PM
They are going after Veteran groups:
I run an American Legion site and received the following today:
Good afternoon, I've spent some time on your website and I believe that
your website provides vets a place to come and reminisce and reunite. It
also provides them with pertinent resources meant to support and educate
those who may not be familiar with the history behind these wars. My
name is Melissa, I'm with the Mesothelioma & Asbestos Cancer Resource
Center and I think I have a useful resource for your our Veterans. Our
war Veterans might have been aware of the dangers they faced when
entering the military, what they may have not known about was the danger
that would linger with them for many years to follow. They were never
told that thirty to fifty years later, their lives could still be in
danger. We have a page based specifically on mesothelioma for Veterans
at www.asbestos.net/ that you can check out.
Your site may also be a valuable resource for those who are dealing with
mesothelioma, a cancer that is sadly still virtually unknown despite its
seriousness. The only known cause of mesothelioma is asbestos exposure.
And it has recently come to light that many people have been exposed to
asbestos over the last fifty years, and they are now forced to deal with
the effects of mesothelioma.
For a quick explanation, we concentrate solely on the knowledge of, and
the issues stemming from mesothelioma and asbestos cancer. So in our
efforts to provide patients, caregivers, and even potential patients
with every treatment option possible to help fight this terrible
disease, we ask for your support by providing a link from your website
to ours. We can also provide written content about mesothelioma that you
can use for a more extensive exploration of the disease on your own site.
You will notice some characteristics that separate us from the typical
mesothelioma website. Our site has been personally reviewed by a New
York State board certified oncologist, and many of its pages are
accompanied by video narration for easy understanding. And of course we
feature the credible, thorough, content that remains our central purpose.
If you do choose to include us as a resource, please drop me a quick
email letting me know.
Internet Relations Coordinator
The Mesothelioma Cancer and Asbestos Resource Center
Posted by: SCAL | Jan 18, 2010 5:16:37 PM
Asbestos.net is targetting fire department websites too.
Posted by: Steve | Jan 26, 2010 3:57:41 PM