Thomson Reuters’ Report May Signal Sea Change In Legal Profession — from techlawcrossroads.com by Stephen Embry

Excerpt:

In a nutshell, the Report demonstrates that to thrive post-pandemic and even survive, lawyers will need to better adopt technology, use better workflows, and make sure work is done by right mix and training, and experience. Otherwise, the work that is piling up during the great talent shortage just won’t get done.

More tech, better work process, more remote work, becoming nimble. Bottom line, successful law firms, and lawyers can’t afford business as usual post-pandemic.

Also see:

Thomson Reuters’ Report May Signal Sea Change In Legal Profession

 

From DSC:
The following items are from a recent presentation by Zach Abramowitz entitledLegal Disruption: Key Trends to Watch in 2022.” By the way, you can sign up for Zach’s legal newsletter at zachabramowitz.substack.com/


Marble Law

 

Darrow raises $20 million to uncover corporate legal violations and bring justice to all — from calcalistech.com by Meir Orbach
The Israeli startup is focused on locating violations that have caused damage to millions of people on average – the threshold for a potential class-action lawsuit

Excerpt:

Darrow has developed a machine learning-based platform which discovers legal violations by some of the biggest corporations in the world. Operating chiefly in the U.S., the company is focused on locating violations that have caused damage to millions of people on average – the threshold for a potential class-action lawsuit.

 

TermScout

Term Scout

 

 

Virtual law firms see 38% jump in recruitment — from personneltoday.com by Adam McCulloch

Excerpt:

In late 2020, 1,355 lawyers worked for such virtual firms, a number that has risen to 1,875 by autumn of 2021. In 2019, 1,272 worked for such firms.

Also see:

 

2022 Predictions – The Market View: Part 1 — from artificiallawyer.com

Excerpt:

What do people want to see happen in 2022? And what do they think will really take place next year? These were the two questions Artificial Lawyer asked a range of legal tech experts from across the market. The quality of responses was so good, and the views expressed so detailed, that this year the 2022 Predictions will be published in two instalments.

Here we go…

We would like to see states across the U.S. tear down regulatory barriers to innovation in legal services. We would like to see human-centred design thinking at the heart of every product, process, and service. We would like to see our community – from law schools to tech companies – advance the cause of access to justice.

 

Fastcase Unveils NextChapter Docs Form Preparation, Client Management Tools, and Workflow Tools for All Practice Areas — from legaltechmonitor.com by Jaime Houssami

Excerpt:

To that end, NextChapter is soon releasing a Forms Exchange, where seasoned attorneys can upload their form templates to the marketplace for other attorneys to purchase for their own use. “Providing access to pre-built forms designed by subject matter experts will be useful for many of the solo and small firm practitioners,” said NextChapter’s first Forms attorney author Carolyn Elefant.

TechReport 2021: Websites & Marketing — from lawtechnologytoday.org by Allison C. Johs

Excerpt:

The COVID-19 pandemic brought changes to the practice of law–many of which were overdue–including virtual meetings and client conferences, remote document signings, court appearances by Zoom and Microsoft Teams, and more. But according to the ABA Legal Technology Resource Center’s 2021 Legal Technology Survey Report results on the use of technology in the legal profession, there is still work to be done.

Linklaters launches virtual global business teams internship — from legaltechnology.com by Caroline Hill

Excerpt:

While most law firm internships are focussed exclusively on attracting future lawyers, magic circle law firm Linklaters has launched a virtual global business teams internship programme aimed at 16- to 18-year-old students. The new internship, which will be welcomed by many for shining a light on the key functions that enable a law firm to run and succeed, will help interns to become aware of the wide range of career options available at Linklaters.

Linklaters Internships For 16-18 Year Olds To Cover Legal Ops + Tech — from artificiallawyer.com

 

From DSC:
From my perspective, both of the items below are highly-related to each other:

Let’s Teach Computer Science Majors to Be Good Citizens. The Whole World Depends on It. — from edsurge.com by Anne-Marie Núñez, Matthew J. Mayhew, Musbah Shaheen and Laura S. Dahl

Excerpt:

Change may need to start earlier in the workforce development pipeline. Undergraduate education offers a key opportunity for recruiting students from historically underrepresented racial and ethnic, gender, and disability groups into computing. Yet even broadened participation in college computer science courses may not shift the tech workforce and block bias from seeping into tech tools if students aren’t taught that diversity and ethics are essential to their field of study and future careers.

Computer Science Majors Lack Citizenship Preparation
Unfortunately, those lessons seem to be missing from many computer science programs.

…and an excerpt from Why AI can’t really filter out “hate news” — with thanks to Sam DeBrule for this resource (emphasis DSC):

The incomprehensibility and unexplainability of huge algorithms
Michael Egnor: What terrifies me about artificial intelligence — and I don’t think one can overstate this danger — is that artificial intelligence has two properties that make it particularly deadly in human civilization. One is concealment. Even though every single purpose in artificial intelligence is human, it’s concealed. We don’t really understand it. We don’t understand Google’s algorithms.

There may even be a situation where Google doesn’t understand Google’s algorithms. But all of it comes from the people who run Google. So the concealment is very dangerous. We don’t know what these programs are doing to our culture. And it may be that no one knows, but they are doing things.

Note:Roman Yampolskiy has written about the incomprehensibility and unexplainability of AI: “Human beings are finite in our abilities. For example, our short term memory is about 7 units on average. In contrast, an AI can remember billions of items and AI capacity to do so is growing exponentially. While never infinite in a true mathematical sense, machine capabilities can be considered such in comparison with ours. This is true for memory, compute speed, and communication abilities.” So we have built-in bias and incomprehensibility at the same time.

From DSC:
That part about concealment reminds me that our society depends upon the state of the hearts of the tech leaders. We don’t like to admit that, but it’s true. The legal realm is too far behind to stop the Wild West of technological change. The legal realm is trying to catch up, but they’re coming onto the race track with no cars…just as pedestrians walking or running as fast as they can….all the while, the technological cars are whizzing by. 

The pace has changed significantly and quickly

 

The net effect of all of this is that we are more dependent upon the ethics, morals, and care for their fellow humankind (or not) of the C-Suites out there (especially Facebook/Meta Platforms, Google, Microsoft, Amazon, Google, and Apple) than we care to admit. Are they producing products and services that aim to help our societies move forward, or are they just trying to make some more bucks? Who — or what — is being served?

The software engineers and software architects are involved here big time as well. “Just because we can doesn’t mean we should.” But that perspective is sometimes in short supply.

 

Legal education as a key stakeholder in legal services reform (276) — from legalevolution.org by Dan Rodriguez
To date, this highly influential stakeholder has had very little to say.

Excerpt:

The fierce and fascinating struggle underway in the American states over legal services reform brings to the table a large collection of interest groups.  These groups include law firms, legal aid organizations, entrepreneurs who might benefit financially from the liberalization of entry rules, and of course the gatekeeper entities, including state bar authorities and the state supreme courts, whose decisions are crucial to the evolution and shape of reform.  See Posts 239 (beginning of a four-part series on serious challenges of bar federalism).

The identity of these specific groups may differ from state to state, as the legal ecosystem has contours often tailored to a particular state’s history and objectives, but the configuration of stakeholders has some rather common elements.

What remains somewhat opaque in this robust and interconnected battle over the reform of legal services is the voice of legal educators and the law schools.  These are, after all, the places in which future lawyers are educated and professional values are instilled.  It is had to imagine a more fertile and opportune time to discuss the ambitions and philosophies of this next generation of legal professionals.

 

Timnit Gebru Says Artificial Intelligence Needs to Slow Down — from wired.com by Max Levy
The AI researcher, who left Google last year, says the incentives around AI research are all wrong.

Excerpt:

ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE RESEARCHERS are facing a problem of accountability: How do you try to ensure decisions are responsible when the decision maker is not a responsible person, but rather an algorithm? Right now, only a handful of people and organizations have the power—and resources—to automate decision-making.

Since leaving Google, Gebru has been developing an independent research institute to show a new model for responsible and ethical AI research. The institute aims to answer similar questions as her Ethical AI team, without fraught incentives of private, federal, or academic research—and without ties to corporations or the Department of Defense.

“Our goal is not to make Google more money; it’s not to help the Defense Department figure out how to kill more people more efficiently,” she said.

From DSC:
What does our society need to do to respond to this exponential pace of technological change? And where is the legal realm here?

Speaking of the pace of change…the following quote from The Future Direction And Vision For AI (from marktechpost.com by Imtiaz Adam) speaks to massive changes in this decade as well:

The next generation will feature 5G alongside AI and will lead to a new generation of Tech superstars in addition to some of the existing ones.

In future the variety, volume and velocity of data is likely to substantially increase as we move to the era of 5G and devices at the Edge of the network. The author argues that our experience of development with AI and the arrival of 3G followed by 4G networks will be dramatically overshadowed with the arrival of AI meets 5G and the IoT leading to the rise of the AIoT where the Edge of the network will become key for product and service innovation and business growth.

Also related/see:

 

“Bloomberg Law 2022” Releases Today – Explores Future of Legal Industry and Practice Trends — from legaltechmonitor.com by Jean O’Grady

Excerpt:

BLOOMBERG LAW 2022 SERIES EXPLORES KEY LEGAL TRENDS THAT WILL SHAPE THE YEAR TO COME
Arlington, Va. (November 1, 2021) — Bloomberg Law today announced the availability of its Bloomberg Law 2022 series, its exploration of key issues across four major topic areas – Litigation, Transactions & Contracts, Regulatory & Compliance, and The Future of the Legal Industry – that will shape the legal market in the coming year. The full series, which is issued annually and features 25 articles from Bloomberg Law’s team of legal analysts, is available on a complimentary basis at http://onb-law.com/tXw850GAeS4.

Topic area coverage includes:

  • Litigation: Developments that will shape the course of litigation in 2022 are examined, ranging from Covid-related employment and contractual issues to emerging trends in antitrust cases and bankruptcy filings.
  • Regulatory & Compliance: Learn how a heightened enforcement environment will impact everything from return-to-office mandates to privacy and tech industry regulation to potential actions by the SEC and Congress on cryptocurrency.
  • Transactions & Contracts: Take a look at the forces shaping the transactional landscape and key markets of interest, from trends in M&A and IPOs to the nuanced impacts of new data security laws on contract language.
  • The Future of the Legal Industry: Hot topics such as diversity & inclusion and attorney well-being and the rapidly expanding areas of law such as legal operations and litigation finance are analyzed.

Also see:

Moving forward, the pandemic will have lasting implications for our justice system. The immediate focus on keeping the doors of justice open will inevitably shift to growing case backlogs, reduced funding, increased demand for low-cost legal assistance, inequities in access, and deepening concerns regarding public trust and confidence. Our justice system must be ready, but how do we create paths forward to achieve justice for all?

 
 

From DSC:
The articles below made me wonder…what will lawyers, judges, and legislators need to know about Bitcoin, Ethereum, and other cryptocurrencies? (#EmergingTechnologies)

 

AI+ alumni + real-world practitioners + accreditation agencies = outcomes for next year -- by Daniel S. Christian

 

AI+ alumni + real-world practitioners + accreditation agencies = outcomes for next year -- by Daniel S. Christian

 

Learning from the living class room

 

ANALYSIS: Break Down Barriers to Legal Tech Usage With Training — from news.blooberlaw.com by Francis Boustany

Excerpt:

Many law firms and legal departments report barriers to using legal technology, and insufficient training may be a root cause. To help break down these barriers, organizations should consider creating more opportunities for their lawyers and staff to train on legal technology.

When asked to select what barriers to using legal technologies exist at their organizations, respondents to Bloomberg Law’s 2021 Legal Technology Survey indicated that the top obstacles are a lack of tech savvy, a lack of familiarity with available technology, and not enough time to learn the technology.


From DSC:
If it’s not already in place, all law schools should be offering curricula in this area from here on out.

 

Legal Tech’s Predictions for Legal Technology Innovation in 2022 — from legalreader.com by Smith Johnes

Excerpts:

  • By 2024, non-lawyer workers will replace 20% of generalist lawyers in legal departments.
  • Legal departments will have automated half of legal work connected to big corporate transactions by 2024.
  • Legal departments will triple their investment in legal technology by 2025.

From DSC:
What are the ramifications for law schools and legal departments if these legal tech-related predictions come true?

 

 How to apply Midyear 2021 lawsuit data to make your digital content more inclusive. — from UsableNet

Redefining the Future of Law: Alternative Legal Service Models — from clio.com by Joshua Lenon; with slides of the recording here.

Advantages of Automated and Bundled Legal Services — from clio.com

The Law Firm of the Future — from joetechnologist.com by Joseph Raczynski

The impact of blockchain, cryptocurrencies, and NFTs on the legal industry with Joseph Raczynski — from the ABA Center for Innovation

Reimagining Law: The Importance of Law Librarians in a Digital World — from legaltechmonitor.com

AI CLM Company LinkSquares Raises $40M, Says It Will Soon Release First-of-its-Kind Product — from legaltechmonitor.com by Bob Ambrogi

“Today, we’re witnessing the next major step up in power, thanks to artificial intelligence software,” Sunak wrote. “AI is creating legal solutions that can outpace and outperform traditional software in the same way steamships and diesel-powered vessels could outperform even the most impressive wind-powered tall ships.” And just as the step up to power changed what boats could do, “Linksquares is changing what a legal software solution can do and be.”

From DSC:
AI has plenty of pitfalls, no doubt. But a range of AI-based technologies continues to move forward and become further integrated into numerous industries and disciplines. The legal realm is not only using AI-based applications already, but it will also need to have the knowledge to be able to support clients who bring cases involving AI (and other emerging technologies) to them.

 
© 2022 | Daniel Christian