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In a two-part series, we will look at Non-Fungible Tokens, explaining what they are and how they will impact numerous industries; and how decentralized finance (DeFi) is critical to understanding NFT’s importance within the legal industry. Originally published on the Legal Executive Institute. By Joseph Raczynski Welcome to the early days of where blockchain goes mainstream, and the legal industry needs to take notice. While Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) have been around for several years — remember CryptoKitties or even the original NFT, called CryptoPunks? Even if you don’t, NFTs have officially exploded into popular culture, begging the question:…
Originally published on Thomson Reuters, Legal Institute. By Joseph Raczynski The pandemic was “the great equalizer” for the legal industry, combining the good from before with the great from the now. A recent half-day virtual event, Legal Geek Presents Thomson Reuters Takeover, underscored this idea and offered a glimpse into the latest legal insights on the future of the legal profession and the impact of the opportunities arising in legal technology. Lizzy Duffy, Senior Director of Global Client Services at Thomson Reuters Acritas, gave a sharp keynote that cut to the heart of the changes we all experienced during…
From the producer: Here at The Hearing HQ we’ve really missed travelling. So being whisked (virtually) to Buenos Aires for this week’s episode was a real treat! Meet Joe’s guest, Federico Ast, the CEO and founder of Kleros. He’s deeply intelligent, thoughtful and one hell of an aggravator in the world of justice. Federico has a philosophy-centered approach to improving judicial systems around the world, and talks to Joe about how deliberative democracy can fast-track access to justice. Kleros is an online dispute resolution system based on blockchain, crowdsourcing and game theory. We hear how Federico has used his experience…
From the producer: On The Hearing, we’ve talked to people at the top of their game about their experiences of lockdown. We’ve gained advice from experts on how businesses can best weather these unprecedented times. And this week Joe chats to Karim Sabbidine, an associate at Thompson Hine, about what COVID-19 means when you’re at the legal coalface. Pre-pandemic, life as a New York litigator was a heady mix of high pressure and excitement – tiring yet fun. But for Karim it quickly transitioned to being cramped in a small apartment with two equally busy flatmates, while trying to navigate…
Published on Lifewire Written by Michelai Graham – Interview with Joseph Raczynski Facebook is scaling back its ambitious plans to move into the cryptocurrency sector while users on the platform aren’t showing much confidence in the site’s new addition. The media giant will likely launch its smaller scale Libra cryptocurrency project as soon as January. Libra was originally supposed to be a new currency backed by fiat money (a currency established as money by the government) and securities (tradable financial assets). Libra will now work as a stable coin, meaning it won’t fluctuate in value as it’s pegged to something…
From the producer: You may have watched as Mark Zuckerberg explained the internet to Congress in a way that felt a bit unnecessary. Well, this episode is sort of the opposite of that. Joe Raczynski is joined by legal and mathematical macroeconomics genius Doug Pepe, to take us through blockchain, tokens and cryptocurrency in a way that’s genuinely enlightening. The legal industry is sometimes accused of not keeping up, but we know that’s not true. Lawyers are occupying this space now. Their clients are very active and they have a crucial role to play in the serious policy issues being…
It’s out! In a year unlike any of the 30 previous annual surveys, the 2020 International Legal Technology Association’s (ILTA’s) Annual Survey breaks down the technology transformation afoot resulting from the ongoing pandemic. With insightful data-driven industry trends, this year’s ILTA survey highlights the rapid pivots, swerves, and shifts happening in the legal technology marketplace. All of us are intimately familiar with the chaos that impacted law firms, employees, clients, and the courts that followed the initial shutdowns in March. What has resulted is a robust renewed interest in tech tools that enable work to continue to flow and ultimately…
In this special US election instalment of the Hearing Podcast, Sanaz Asgharzadeh, former big law firm attorney now heading her own practice, Atlas Law Firm, speak with me about the election. With the caveat that at the time of recording a victor had not yet been chosen, and with the votes continuing to be counted in several swing states, Sanaz describes the current mood of the US as it waits to find out who will emerge victorious. Sanaz talks about her background as an Iranian immigrant in the US and how it shaped her interests in the law and political…
In this week’s episode, we showcase a conversation with Ron Levine, General Counsel at Herrick, Feinstein LLP. Ron, a graduate of Princeton University and Harvard Law School, speaks as a thoughtful realist, proponent for good, and a practitioner of what he preaches. He bears witness as a 40-year litigator, discussing the fascinating dealings of what happens behind the class action suit scenes, describing a lack of transparency, and what he would do to improve the system. Ron dives into the importance of technology, as a crusader for others in the field. Specifically, in the eDiscovery space he stresses the importance…
Originally published on the Legal Executive Institute. By Joseph Raczynski In a year like no other, the most prominent legal technology conference recently wrapped their weeklong virtual event as the International Legal Technology Association (ILTA) morphed its annual ILTACON event into ILTA>ON. After initially vacillating on a hybrid in-person and virtual event, before ILTA decided to go with a fully virtual event with more than 100 sessions and various virtual activities. According to the site, ILTA>ON (as it was known) had roughly 3,800 attendees and vendors compared to past years of around 5,000 — a very respectable haul…
I had the privilege of being selected to report on how ILTA (International Legal Technology Association) did on their predictions from 2013 up to today, during their 2020 ILTA-ON Conference. Even more fun, predicting what technology and LegalTech will look like from 2020-2025, and then going out to 2060. Check out the entire recording here: https://youtu.be/UgyDyBSJ3AA Remember back when we had ‘Law Firm 2020 predictions’? In the first part of my ILTA-ON presentation, we will go ‘Back to the Future’ reviewing past predictions to see what came true and what we got wrong. Then, we will blast into a journey…
In this episode, I am joined by David Brown, Legal Director of the Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund (TLDEF). TLDEF is a transgender-led organization fighting for transgender rights through litigation and other legal avenues. Working with numerous law firms, David and his team bring lawsuits to demonstrate how statutes are unequal and discriminatory. David tells me how his family inspired him to want to fight injustice. And he explains how TLDEF strategically selects cases with the ultimate aim of moving the law and the equality agenda forward, while also ensuring they authentically represent transgender people’s lives. David talks about…
Originally published on the Legal Executive Institute. By Joseph Raczynski In the past, I’ve spoke about a possible tsunami of change within the legal industry. It is something I have been carefully watching for several years, but now I think the switch may about to be thrown. During a recent discussion about legal tech startups, Prof. Richard Susskind mentioned that several years ago there were a few hundred start-ups in the legal space, now there are a few thousand. This is a catalyst for the idea of a legal platform. How does the industry integrate all of these…
Originally published on the Legal Executive Institute. By Joseph Raczynski Previously, we discussed how platforms create an ecosystem or environment that allow people and businesses to interact and accomplish tasks and ultimately create a network that can connect and benefit the entire community. Within this environment, of course, interoperability flourishes – pushing early adopters and innovators to think boldly about workflow and connectivity. How can connecting various applications help attorneys do their job better? One core component enabling a successful platform to help lawyers be more efficient is the use of Application Programming Interfaces (APIs). These API services allow…
Originally published on the Legal Executive Institute. By Joseph Raczynski By 2030 we will see significant lawyer work being done by machines. As exponential growth of technology consumes to world, the legal industry is especially appetizing. As a result, legal services will be fundamentally different than today in terms of both job function and the way legal services are provided. In the final of a four-part global webinar series, The Uncertain Decade, Legal Geek brought us bold concepts and vision about the future of the legal industry, bringing together two of the most respected names in the legal industry…