Monday, June 21, 2010

Westlaw's Lightning Fast Response

I wrote the other day about my decision to stop doing business with Westlaw. My primary complaint was that the firm's billing practices are at best Byzantine, although the practices lack the charm of the exotic. Readers from across the country responded. I am not the only person who Westlaw has taken for granted.

It turns out that Westlaw can respond when it wants to, so I need to correct the impression that the company cannot find it's hindquarters with either hand.

We informed our local sales representative that we were taking down our web page from the Findlaw account, a subsidiary of Thompson West's, and moving elsewhere. Guess what? The page came down in record time. We're naken today with no online presence for the first time in years. Alas, poor Internet.

So here's the moral of the story: When West has you in the grips of a contract from which it can extract a dollar by squeezing, it will twist until your accountant weeps. But on a month-to-month contract, the moment you stop paying, the company stops playing.

West can listen when it wants to. It can respond when it is in the company's interest to do so. Hence proof positive that the company could be responsive if it wanted to be on other matters. It just doesn't care. It just wants to get paid.