Once upon a time, I was known as Inspector Gadget. Why? Because I wore on my belt three different devices — a mobile phone, an iPod, and a Palm Pilot. The phone was only good for calls, the iPod could only play music, and the non-wireless Palm Pilot was simply a calendaring assistant.
I wondered then whether there could ever be convergence, such that at some point I only would need to carry around one device. Of course, that did happen, but the convergence occurred beyond my wildest dreams.
Continue reading Apps Gone Wild: Is There Anything They Can’t Do?
Social media no longer is the province of only those who are college-aged or younger. Indeed, businesses of all types now seek to capitalize on social media connections, and law firms are no exception. Many firms now have their own Facebook pages, for example, and many lawyers are seeking to attract attention through a variety of other social media sites such as LinkedIn and Twitter. Also, more and more, information is being stored in the cloud.
Notwithstanding this gravitational pull toward clouds and social media, lawyers need to remain mindful of ethical and practical constraints, so that they do not feel more pain than joy in this context.
Continue reading The Legal Ethics of Social Media and the Cloud
Many web sites prohibit children under the age of 13. It’s not necessary out of altruism, but because the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) contains various provisions and requirements concerning special treatment that must be accorded to the children.
The statute is designed to protect young children from web sites that might seek to exert influence over them by obtaining personal data and marketing to them. Indeed, web sites are required to get verifiable parental consent before allowing such children to participate and they must follow certain rules to safeguard their privacy.
Continue reading How Many Millions of Children are on Facebook?
Once upon a time, it was widely believed that electronic discovery would streamline litigation, making it faster, easier, less burdensome, and less expensive. So, now that we are some years into the e-discovery experience, has the prediction come true? Sadly, not necessarily.
While it is true that it can be easier to retrieve information electronically by using search terms, rather than sending teams of associates into warehouses to rummage through boxes of documents, that is just the tip of the iceberg when considering the overall e-discovery effort. And even if vast quantities of electronic information can be brought up based on a simple search, that information had to be harvested at the front-end, and ultimately will need to be reviewed at the back-end.
Continue reading E-Discovery Is More Costly, Burdensome Than You Think
Happy New Year! We’re just a week into January, but 2012 seems to be firing on all tech cylinders.
The other night, I went to a shopping mall with my family. While most of the traditional retail stores were not terribly busy, the Apple store was an amazing hive of activity.
In the one room that makes up the store, I literally counted as many as 40 Apple employees who were swamped fielding questions from and helping a never-ending parade of customers. It seemed that everyone and their kid brother and sister was hunting for the latest iPad, iPod, and Apple computer.
Continue reading Long Live Tech In 2012
Back in the 1990s, there was talk of the coming “information superhighway.” Now we are traveling at warp speed on that highway. Take a look at some of these jaw-dropping stats:
- Facebook now boasts more than 800 million active users, with 350 million gaining access from mobile devices.
- Roughly 70 percent of Facebook users are located outside of the United States.
- Every month about 30 billion content links are shared on Facebook.
- Remarkably, Facebook users install 20 million apps every day.
- Almost half of 18-34 year-old users check Facebook when they wake up, with more than a quarter of users doing so before they even leave the bed.
Continue reading Technology and the Internet By the Numbers