Technology effects every workplace. Readers of this blog know this well enough, as many of my posts address the wide variety of problems faced by employers that arise from employee use of technology, particularly social media. Lawyers, too, face these problems. The legal profession is, by no means, immune from the woes of social-media or the difficulties of trying to keep up with changing technology. Technology’s impact on the legal profession is a topic near and dear to my heart.
Which is why I am so honored to have been appointed to Delaware’s newly formed Commission on Law and Technology. The Commission was created by the Supreme Court of Delaware in response to a recent amendment to the State’s rules of professional responsibility requiring lawyers to maintain competence in technology. Supreme Court Justice Henry duPont Ridgely, who will serve as the judicial liaison to the Commission, has explained that the Commission will be charged with creating a set of best practices in a variety of areas, including cloud computing, e-discovery, and, of course, social media.
The purpose of the Commission is to provide Delaware lawyers with sufficient guidance and education in the aspects of technology and the practice of law so as to facilitate compliance with our rules of professional conduct. Although several states’ bar associations have issued advisory opinions on certain aspects of technology and its use, the opinions can be limited in scope, as they apply only to the specific set of facts posed by the inquiring attorney. Thus, it is very exciting to be part of an official effort to broaden the information available to Delaware lawyers.
The collaborative nature of the Commission between the bench and bar is very reflective of our State’s cooperative spirit. And the affirmative effort to provide guidance is very much in line with my preventative-practices philosophy. For all of these reasons, I am looking forward to making a contribution to the Commission’s laudable mission and am proud (although not surprised) that our State is the first to launch such a commendable endeavor.