A year ago, we found ourselves concerned about the definition of pro bono work. We had discovered a few examples of overreaching and a few examples of confusion in the marketplace. This was more than a matter of technicalities. As readers of this magazine know, we rank firms on their pro bono hours; the rankings are based on self-reporting. To be fair to all concerned, we needed a common understanding of what counts and what does not. We would, after a decent interval, declare one, we said.

Easier promised, it turns out, than drafted.

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