Public opinion is sometimes dismissed by lawyers, but it was considered “the very soul of justice” by renowned legal philosopher Jeremy Bentham because of its potential to fight corruption at all levels (keeping even “the judge himself, while trying, under trial”) and to drive the real human effort that is necessary to create justice in our time. UN Special Rapporteur James Anaya recently wrote that “the spotlight of media coverage keeps all stakeholders honest and helps them act in a more responsible and sustainable manner.” “What keeps me up at night,” Anaya writes, “is when there is no spotlight.” Bentham and others also recognized that public opinion operates much like a tribunal in that it does not typically investigate truth on its own, but renders judgments based on the evidence (and advocacy) presented to it. The pressure by society to “enforce” its judgment, once rendered, can be overwhelming even to the most powerful opposing interests.
Forum Nobis’ legal communications practice recognizes the serious and legitimate role that public opinion considerations and strategies can play in a client’s fight for justice and its overall objectives. The firm recognizes that a fundamentally different mindset, as well as different a different and more diverse set of skills, is often required to effectively address public opinion and communications challenges. And unlike most firms, Forum Nobis has extensive experience integrating communications strategies seamlessly with its legal advocacy and other forms of representation.
Forum Nobis maintains relationships with proven project partners who specialize in traditional media relations, social media development, public awareness campaign development and implementation, lobbying and government relations, direct citizen advocacy, and international human rights advocacy. From its home office in Washington, D.C., Forum Nobis provides particularly strong communications services on issues that involve U.S. lawmakers, federal departments and agencies, D.C.-based international institutions and human rights bodies, foreign embassies and consulates, national and international press offices, and Washington’s wide-ranging civil society community of think tanks, interest groups, political organizations, and leading non-profits.
Specific types of projects Forum Nobis can help with include:
- international law, human rights, and environment-related campaign design, development, and strategy;
- international law, human rights, and environment-related reports, briefing/background papers, presentations, op-ed writing and placement, press releases, speeches, and issue outlines—useful for a variety of public relations purposes, including awareness campaigns, creative media projects, fundraising drives, public policy dialogues, and other projects;
- support research and analysis for existing communications efforts focused in issues of international law, human rights, and environmental justice;
- outreach to and liaison with media producers, including traditional journalism, online and social media, creative and freelance media producers, and more;
- rapid response and critical event or “crisis” management;
- issue engagement and “lobbying” services in a variety of government, international institution, and civil society settings;
- media monitoring and information currency programs to keep clients abreast of developments regarding select fields, issues, cases, regions, and more;
- audience data research and analysis, media audits.
Unless otherwise expressly stated in a retention agreement, Forum Nobis communications services are provided in connection with legal representation and are subject to attorney-client privilege, attorney work product, and other confidentiality protections to the full extent permitted by law.