Jury Selection and Social Media

Posted on January 20, 2011 02:16 by Jim Pattillo

Following an established trend of researching social media in jury selection, this article from Law.com raises a few pitfalls of using this method of researching jurors.  First, it recognizes that jurors who use social media will probably have their privacy settings so that their information is not publically accessible-– a good practice for everyone.  If that is the case, then no one should have special access to it just for the purpose of jury selection. 

Second, the article points out that a juror could purposely alter their profile to get out of jury duty.  On one hand, it would be easy to assume a juror could just as easily mislead someone when asked direct questions during voir dire as they could online.  However, people are generally more candid and honest when they are asked questions face-to-face in a courtroom.  They are more likely to mis-lead behind the false façade of social media than they are in person.  Caveat emptor should be the rule for attorneys in using social media in jury selection.  Any information discovered about a potential juror’s biases is only as good as the source.

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Categories: Jury Selection | Social Media

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