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How does Web2.0 affect the trial process?


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How does Web2.0 affect the trial process?

  1. 1. May 2010 Canadian Association of Law Librarians
  2. 2. How does Web 2.0 affect the trial process? <ul><li>The Honourable Justice Fran Kiteley </li></ul><ul><li>Superior Court of Justice, Ontario </li></ul>
  3. 3. <ul><li>Canadian internet use surpassed Canadian television watching * </li></ul><ul><li>82% of Canadians have internet access at home (only 69% of those over 55)* </li></ul><ul><li>* Ipsos Reid poll 2009 </li></ul>Context
  4. 4. Context cont’d <ul><li>Between 2007 and 2009, the percentage of Canadians with an online social networking profile shot from 39% to 56% </li></ul><ul><li>85% of Canadians with a social networking profile use Facebook </li></ul>
  5. 5. <ul><li>Mid April 2010: Twitter had approx. 106,000,000 registered users </li></ul><ul><li>Users sign up at the rate of 300,000 per day </li></ul><ul><li>Twitter get a total of 3 billion requests a day </li></ul>Context cont’d
  6. 6. Context cont’d <ul><li>Average of 55 million tweets a day </li></ul><ul><li>In the past year, Twitter has grown from 25 to 175 employees </li></ul><ul><li>Source: </li></ul>
  7. 7. Context cont’d <ul><li>* Searches per month </li></ul><ul><li>Google: 88 billion </li></ul><ul><li>Twitter: 19 billion </li></ul><ul><li>Yahoo: 8.4 billion </li></ul><ul><li>Bing: 4 billion </li></ul><ul><li>* Edison Research </li></ul>
  8. 8. Canadian Context <ul><li>Jurors are prohibited from discussing deliberations with anyone - ever </li></ul><ul><li>Juries in civil and criminal cases </li></ul><ul><li>Sequester in criminal proceedings once deliberations begin </li></ul><ul><li>No cameras in trial courtrooms </li></ul>
  9. 9. Possible Instructions to Jurors <ul><li>We know that the majority of people use social networking and research tools such as Facebook, Google, Wikipedia and Twitter. </li></ul><ul><li>We have an important legal principle that the defendant has a right to expect that decisions by the jury are made only on the basis of evidence that every juror and the defendant heard. </li></ul>
  10. 10. Instructions cont’d <ul><li>It is for that reason that I must require that you not do any investigations on your own. </li></ul><ul><li>You must not go to locations where events occurred to develop your own perspective. </li></ul>
  11. 11. Instructions cont’d <ul><li>Similarly, you must not use Google earth, Bing, Wikipedia, twitter, blogging or any other electronic medium to investigate the law, people, places or things involved in this trial. </li></ul><ul><li>And you must not use any electronic medium to communicate with any person at any time about this case, even after your verdict is delivered. </li></ul>
  12. 12. Possible Consequences <ul><li>Full compliance </li></ul><ul><li>Non-compliance but secretly – not disclosed to other jurors </li></ul><ul><li>Non-compliance and disclosed to other jurors – accepted by other jurors </li></ul><ul><li>Non-compliance and disclosed to other jurors who report to trial judge who declares mistrial </li></ul>
  13. 13. Conclusions <ul><li>Is this much ado about nothing? </li></ul><ul><li>Or is this a big deal? </li></ul>
  14. 14. Conclusions <ul><li>Notwithstanding s.11(f) of the Charter, must we re-think the role of the jury (in criminal and civil matters) in a society where access to information outside the courtroom cannot be controlled? </li></ul>