Robert B. Gibson Comments on Use of Social Media to Research Prospective Jurors
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Mining prospective jurors’ Facebook, Twitter and other social media accounts is common practice for many attorneys looking to spot biases that might cost their clients a fair trial.
The American Bar Association has said the searches are ethical, and a ruling by the Missouri Supreme Court bolstered arguments that attorneys have a duty to do online research of prospective jurors. Still, some judges have deemed the online searches invasive and banned them.
Now, a federal judge’s ruling in a copyright battle between Silicon Valley heavyweights Oracle and Google has reignited debate about the practice while also offering a potential middle ground.