Are Lawyers Doing Work That Should Be Done By Machines?

Good question. Important question. Maybe the Big Question.
Ron Friedmann offers his insights into the question in a post about an article in which Cisco’s Mark Chandler raises the question in the context of document review in electronic discovery.
The money quote from Ron:

I’ve written previously that the choosing the best document review approach – US contract lawyers, offshore lawyers, or software – is an empirical question. Chandler adds anecdotal evidence that computers do better than humans, at least considering cost.

I ruminated a bit about the question outside the context of electronic discovery in one of my favorite posts on this blog from 2006.
The money quote from that post was:

At TECHSHOW 2005, Marc Lauritsen was reviewing the histroy of legal technology and made a comment about tasks that it made sense for computers to do and tasks that it made sense for humans to do. It struck me then, and does even more so today, that part of the reason we see dissatisfaction and burnout in the legal profession is that, arguably in many cases, lawyers are still doing work as humans that should at this point be done by computers, [rather than having computers do the work to free them up] to do more of the creative things that play such a big part in being a lawyer. Properly understood, we should be trying to use technology to enable us to move in that direction.
In his email, Gates says: “In this New World of Work, repetitive, uninteresting tasks like moving data from one system to another will be automated and employees will focus much more of their time and creative energy on work that generates real value and growth.”

Important question. Maybe a Law 2.0 question.
[Originally posted on DennisKennedy.Blog (http://www.denniskennedy.com/blog/)]
Learn more about legal technology at Dennis Kennedy’s Legal Technology Central page.
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