Legal Technology News annually presents its LTN Innovation Awards for Outstanding Achievement by Legal Professionals in their Use of Technology. This year’s awards, to be presented on the first day of LegalTech, includes one to US Magistrate Judge Andrew Peck as Champion of Technology. The most obvious example of the work which won Judge Peck this title is his article Search, Forward (free registration required), which made a clear and unambiguous case for using technology where it is appropriate to do so to bring down the expense, time and uncertainty of electronic discovery.
My article Judge Peck and Predictive Coding at the Carmel eDiscovery Retreat, reporting on a speech which covered the same ground, was the clear winner in terms of page views on my blog last year, passed on by those who recognised, as all of us did who were present at Carmel, that the ground was shifting under our feet, and in a good way, as he spoke.
His impact, however, goes very much wider than this one speech and article, and lies in countless appearances at seminars and on panels in the US and elsewhere, as well as the commitment to co-operative, proportionate and competent lawyering in his own court – shown most obviously in his William A Gross Construction case with its “wake-up call to the bar”. He also took part in my eDiscovery play in 2011 in both its New York and London versions, a stronger test of judicial character than merely of thespian talent.
What is important about Judge Peck’s role is that he is no tech-head, advocating the use of technology for its own sake. Like the other Magistrate Judges who are well-known in this area, what he says is firmly rooted in Rule 1 FRCP and “the just, speedy and inexpensive” purpose behind the rules.
Another of the LTN awards which catches the eye is the one for Large Law Firm which goes to Australian law firm Mallesons Stephen Jaques, a well-deserved recognition for the firm’s Applied Legal Technology Director, Michelle Mahoney, for her team and for a partnership which recognises the importance of technology in meeting its clients’ objectives.
There is a Reuters article about the awards here.