Important changes to the SBM print member directory will take effect with the April 2017 issue. The new, portable directory will be more accurate, much less costly to print and distribute, and takes into account substantial changes in member preferences and use over the last decade. It will not include members’ contact information, but will have the information members have told us they value most in a print directory.
Given the increased frequency with which our members change their business locations and contact information, the annual print directory can no longer be considered a reliable source of information. A recent study of the data published in the print directory showed that 18,815 members—42 percent—changed their contact, name, or status information at least once in the 12 months between directory issues. Even hot off the press, the print directory already contains nearly 10 percent outdated contact information, given the lag time between data pull and actual printing.
The online member directory reflects changes within 24 hours. Greater accuracy and convenience explain why our members and the public turn to the online member directory for information more than 12,000 times a day at both www.zeekbeek.com/SBM and www.michbar.org/memberdirectory. Use of the Internet by the legal profession to conduct business has grown exponentially in the past few years. Online transactions and informational resources, e-filing, marketing, and communication via the Internet will continue to proliferate even more in the 21st century legal marketplace.
The new directory will contain the practical information members have told us they value most in a print directory, including comprehensive contact information not easily found in other formats for courts, Michigan state and local government, and lawyer associations, as well as classified and display advertising.
Not printing and mailing the complete 700-plus-page print directory to every member will result in significantly reduced paper, printing, and postage costs and will help the Bar delay the need for a future dues increase.
Do You Prefer Print?
Recognizing that many members and their support staff may prefer to use the familiar print directory, the State Bar will offer a full print directory—including an alphabetical roster of members’ contact information—for sale, and will publish a PDF version online behind your member password.
Preordering a Print Directory
Print copies of the complete directory (including the alphabetical roster of members' contact information) are available by preorder only, using the April Directory Order Form. A fee of $35 per copy will help us offset the cost of sending the additional 600+ pages that comprise the listings of members’ contact information. Place your order by Feb. 15.
In the face of increasing production and mailing costs, and to be more environmentally friendly, the State Bar Board of Commissioners authorized this change to the new directory format. For more information, please see SBM Board of Commissioners Advances #SBMFutureLaw Efforts via New Directory Format.