Opening Statements

Firm’s new blog looks at other egregious L&E blunders in pop culture, after ‘The Office’ ends

Posted Nov 1, 2013 3:30 AM CDT
By Ed Finkel

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When NBC’s The Office ended its nine-season run, it seemed natural that Ford & Harrison’s popular That’s What She Said blog would also come to an end.

But the Atlanta-based labor and employment law firm found countless other examples of egregious behavior and legal issues in current television, movies and books, and it decided to morph its Office-based blog into a new one called EntertainHR.

The blog, launched this summer, already has tackled issues such as how to quantify the actionable instances of unlawful discrimination and harassment in the 2011 dark comedy Horrible Bosses, whether TV scriptwriters could be sued for sexual harassment based on the offensiveness of the characters and dialogue they’re writing, and how far from reality “reality television” can stray before crossing the line into illegal viewer deception.

“We found a creative way to educate HR professionals and do it in a way that’s not just informative but also a little bit of fun at the same time,” says firm partner Brian Kurtz, who is one of a stable of bloggers for the site.

Former Ford & Harrison lawyer Julie Elgar launched the original TWSS blog, which focused on labor and employment issues in The Office. The blog attracted a loyal following of thousands. “She realized every episode she was watching would probably result in massive litigation,” Kurtz says of Elgar.

Since there was no obvious successor to The Office, the firm decided to broaden the concept to entertainment more generally—movies, TV shows, books and whatever else provides actionable material.

The group of writers hopes to update the blog with fresh material each week.

This article originally appeared in the November 2013 issue of the ABA Journal with this headline: "RIP, That’s What She Said: As The Office fades to black, firm changes its popular blog."

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