As Its Conference Kicks Off, Clio Announces Its ‘Most Important Product Release Ever’ (and More) — from lawsitesblog.com by Bob Ambrogi

Excerpt (emphasis DSC):

The Clio Cloud Conference is always the occasion for the law practice management company to announce new and enhanced products, and today’s kick-off of this year’s event was no different, with CEO Jack Newton unveiling what he described to me as the most important product release since Clio’s debut 13 years ago.

That product is Clio Payments, a native e-payments technology built into the Clio Manage law practice management platform, allowing lawyers to offer clients secure and compliant credit card, debit card and e-check payments.

More on Clio Payments below, but, in addition, Clio today also announced…

 

Profile of the Legal Profession — from the American Bar Association (ABA)

Profile of the legal profession -- from the American Bar Association

Excerpt from the Legal Education section:

After several years of declining enrollment in legal education, the number of students enrolled at law schools accredited by the American Bar Association increased in 2018, 2019 and 2020.

In 2020, the number of students pursuing a juris doctor degree hit 114,520 – the highest number since 2014. This represented an increase of 1,638 students (or 1.5%) over the previous year. Still, it was far below the high of 147,525 enrolled law school students in 2010.

Enrollment is growing faster for students in non-JD legal programs in law schools – for example, those seeking master of law degrees and certificates. In 2020, there were 21,292 students in these non-JD programs – a 78% increase from 11,973 non-JD students in 2014.

For 2020, there were 63,384 law school applicants, 44,115 of whom were accepted to at least one school, according to the Law School Admission Council.

 

Americans Need a Bill of Rights for an AI-Powered World — from wired.com by Eric Lander & Alondra Nelson
The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy is developing principles to guard against powerful technologies—with input from the public.

Excerpt (emphasis DSC):

Soon after ratifying our Constitution, Americans adopted a Bill of Rights to guard against the powerful government we had just created—enumerating guarantees such as freedom of expression and assembly, rights to due process and fair trials, and protection against unreasonable search and seizure. Throughout our history we have had to reinterpret, reaffirm, and periodically expand these rights. In the 21st century, we need a “bill of rights” to guard against the powerful technologies we have created.

Our country should clarify the rights and freedoms we expect data-driven technologies to respect. What exactly those are will require discussion, but here are some possibilities: your right to know when and how AI is influencing a decision that affects your civil rights and civil liberties; your freedom from being subjected to AI that hasn’t been carefully audited to ensure that it’s accurate, unbiased, and has been trained on sufficiently representative data sets; your freedom from pervasive or discriminatory surveillance and monitoring in your home, community, and workplace; and your right to meaningful recourse if the use of an algorithm harms you. 

In the coming months, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (which we lead) will be developing such a bill of rights, working with partners and experts across the federal government, in academia, civil society, the private sector, and communities all over the country.

Technology can only work for everyone if everyone is included, so we want to hear from and engage with everyone. You can email us directly at ai-equity@ostp.eop.gov

 

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

 
 

The Metaverse is Taking Over the Physical World — from interestingengineering.com by Rupendra Brahambhatt; with thanks to Dan Lejerskar for this resource
The virtual world is expanding with real world avatars and digital economy.

Excerpt:

The advent of AR, blockchain, and VR devices in the last few years has sparked the development of the metaverse. Moreover, the unprecedented growth of highly advanced technologies in the gaming industry, which offer immersive gameplay experiences, not only provides us a glimpse of how the metaverse would look like but also indicates that we are closer than ever to experience a virtual world of our own.

What is the metaverse?

The Metaverse is Taking Over the Physical WorldSource: Kelvin Han/Unsplash

A metaverse is a group of persistent, shared 3D virtual environments where you (in the form of your digital avatar) can visit places, shop for products, subscribe to services, work with your colleagues, play games, and even customize the scenes around you to meet your personal tastes and requirements, and the digital assets you own. So essentially, a metaverse is a virtual world or worlds, that would allow you to go inside the digital world — to be in rather than on the digital space.

 

From DSC:
Again I wonder….on the legal side of things…how will this impact what lawyers, judges, legislators, general counsels, and more need to know? Along these lines see:

To do this well, legal department heads and the lawyers and professionals in the department will have to learn, and practice, some new skills: embracing technology, project management, change management, and adaptability.

The first, and likely most obvious, skill an attorney needs in a rapidly evolving business environment is a firm grasp on existing and emerging technology. There are two important categories of technology to consider—the first is legal technology and the second is broader technology trends.

 

 

From DSC:
What if you were working in the law office that these folks came into for help, representation, and counsel…what would you do?

Or if someone “stole” your voice for a bit:

You can see the critical role that the American Bar Association plays in helping our nation deal with these kinds of things. They are the pace-setters on the [legal] track.

 

The Disruption Of Legal Services Is Here — from forbes.com by John Arsneault

Excerpt:

For the first time in those 12 years, I am now convinced we are on the precipice of the promised disruption in legal. Not because anyone in the law firms are driving toward this — but because venture capital and tech innovators have finally turned their attention to the industry.

Legal services are a much smaller overall market than, say, retail, financial services or biotech. In the world of disruption and the promised gold rush for the companies that do the disrupting, size matters. Legal has just been low on the industry list. Its number is now up.

It’s easy to Monday morning quarterback that industry now. Easy to see how big of a threat Amazon was to those companies. But when you are being rewarded for doing what you have always done and what your predecessors always did, it’s easy to miss what is around the bend. By the time those companies’ executives realized Amazon was a direct competitor with a much better fulfillment model, it was too late.

 

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?

 

[CA] State Bar Proposes Allowing “Paraprofessionals” to Practice Law — from acbanet.org by Tiela Chalmers

Excerpt (emphasis DSC):

The [CA] State Bar currently has committees working on two proposals that would, if approved, have huge impact on the legal profession. Both committees are working on amending the legal regulatory system to address ways to expand the resources available to those needing legal help. One committee is looking particularly at tech solutions, including permitting Artificial Intelligence solutions that would automate answers to legal questions. But this blog post will focus on the one that is farther along in development – permitting “paraprofessionals” to practice some types of law, with various restrictions.

Also see:

California Paraprofessional Program Working Group — from calbar.ca.gov

Excerpt:

The State Bar’s recently published California Justice Gap Study: Measuring the Unmet Civil Legal Needs of Californians, found that 55 percent of Californians experience at least one civil legal problem in their household each year, and Californians received no or inadequate legal help for 85 percent of these problems. A lack of knowledge about what constitutes a legal issue and concerns about legal costs lead many Californians to deal with problems on their own rather than seek legal help. A thoughtfully designed and appropriately regulated paraprofessionals program is an important component of the solution to the access to legal services crisis in California by expanding the pool of available and affordable legal service providers.

 

Constitution Day 2021: An Inspiring and Incomplete Civil Justice System — from legaltechmonitor.com by David Yellen

Excerpts:

Constitution Day, September 17, commemorates that date in 1787 when the delegates to the Constitutional Convention signed the U.S. Constitution in Philadelphia. Clearly, this date and this holiday do not attract nearly as much attention as July 4, the holiday marking the signing of the other foundational document of the United States, the Declaration of Independence. That is somewhat lamentable, however, because all Americans should take the time to celebrate and reflect on the Constitution each year.

I say celebrate because the Constitution was remarkable when it was written, and has served as the basic architecture for our system of government, law, and individual liberty for over 200 years. Not only has it remained the steadfast backbone of our country’s system of government, it has influenced new and evolving democracies around the world.

Despite the challenges, we believe the American legal system is still the best approach—and we believe all of us share a responsibility to embrace its ideals, expand access, and improve delivery. 

 

Justice, Equity, And Fairness: Exploring The Tense Relationship Between Artificial Intelligence And The Law With Joilson Melo — from forbes.com by Annie Brown

Excerpt:

The law and legal practitioners stand to gain a lot from a proper adoption of AI into the legal system. Legal research is one area that AI has already begun to help out with. AI can streamline the thousands of results an internet or directory search would otherwise provide, offering a smaller digestible handful of relevant authorities for legal research. This is already proving helpful and with more targeted machine learning it would only get better.

The possible benefits go on; automated drafts of documents and contracts, document review, and contract analysis are some of those considered imminent.

Many have even considered the possibilities of AI in helping with more administrative functions like the appointment of officers and staff, administration of staff, and making the citizens aware of their legal rights.

A future without AI seems bleak and laborious for most industries including the legal and while we must march on, we must be cautious about our strategies for adoption. This point is better put in the words of Joilson Melo; “The possibilities are endless, but the burden of care is very heavy[…]we must act and evolve with [caution].”

 

What is a Smart Contract Audit? — from 101blockchains.com by Gwyneth Iredale

Excerpt:

Blockchain applications use smart contracts for interacting with the blockchain, and smart contracts have profound security vulnerabilities. This is where you need a smart contract audit. You might be wondering about the definition of auditing a smart contract and the resources you need for the same. The following discussion offers you a detailed guide on smart contract auditing with an outline of its definition, types, and processes.

 
© 2021 | Daniel Christian