Saturday, February 26, 2011

Lawyers use Facebook for jury selection

Jury duty just got more intrusive. The next time you get the call, expect attorneys to know a lot more about you. Jury consultants are now looking at your Facebook account to decide whether or not you're suitable for the jury.

"Privacy is not what it was 10 years ago," says William Taylor, practicing lawyer in Denver and director of Cyopsis IT Forensics and Investigations.

Using Facebook as background checks for the courts is nothing new.

"As long as we`ve been able to Google we`ve been able to look at information," says Litigation Consultant, Ken Broda-Bahm. "The average content of a Facebook landing page tells you more about a juror in a quick read than you will find out in 45 minutes of questioning a juror," adds Taylor.

Today it's standard practice for lawyers and jury consultants to use social networks to research jurors.

"'I`m well aware of lawyers who do this on a routine matter I`ve done it myself in some cases," Taylor says.

"It`s not just Facebook it`s really anything that`s out there on the Internet," says Broad-Bahm.

MySpace, Twitter, blogs and personal websites can all be relevant in finding out who you are to help legal experts weed out a bias opinion.

Until this new practice is regulated by the law, any public information found out about your on the web is fair game.

"You should expect that if you are called in for jury duty or if you are going for a job interview then someone can look at that information," Broda-Bahm says.

By Nina Sparano, Technology Reporter

Source: KDVR

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