We’re back for more legal geekery with some cool, important, and amusing stories today. (Not necessarily in that order.) Care to reward our dedication to getting back into the swing of things by subscribing to the podcast and rating us five stars on iTunes? We’d really appreciate it.
1. @ouij points Sarah Jeong’s critique of Mashable’s treatment of the Supreme Court‘s recent Aereo argument. I don’t want to spoil the post because it’s a really amusing read — essentially it takes Mashable’s description of the justices and what it purports to say about the justice’s grasp of technology, then explains why it’s wrong. I agree with her assessment for the most part. Mashable’s mischaracterization of Justice Scalia’s understanding was particularly egregious.
2. There’s been an ongoing debate about whether it’s ethical for lawyers to look up their jurors on social media. The ABA Standing Committee on Ethics and Professionalism recently issued Formal Opinion 466 which rules that it’s not an ethics violation to simply look jurors up on social media websites to discover whatever information is available to the public, but it would be a violation to attempt to connect with them. So what if they get a notification on LinkedIn for instance that I’ve been viewing their profile? The ABA had something to say about that too — it’s not communication between attorney and juror, but rather a communication between the social media platform and the juror, and therefore not an ethical problem. The ABA Journal points out that it remains unclear whether there’s an ethical obligation to point out misconduct by the juror to the court.
3. Two Harvard Law students have developed a platform called Pluto Mail designed to be essentially the snapchat of email. It will allow for the unsending of email, expiration dates on email, and ex post facto email editing. Depending on how this is implemented, there could be pretty wide-spread legal implications. I’ll discuss some preliminary thoughts and try to spark some discussion on the reddit page.
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