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Without fail, in every litigation matter, this question is bound to come up (particularly around the time discovery responses are due): Will you accept service of pleadings and other documents via email? But, note, as one of our readers pointed out, in some states, such as Illinois, accepting pleadings via email is a requirement.

Under FRCP Rule 5, if the person being served consents to receiving service by electronic means, such as email or fax (or ECF), then service will be considered complete upon transmission. However, as the rule implies, you don't have to consent to electronic service (of documents that go through ECF), but doing so could prove rather beneficial. Most state courts also will allow service via email, if the party being served has consented.

Ellen Pao 'Resets' Gender Bias in Silicon Valley

In her book "Reset," Ellen Pao reveals critical details from her historic lawsuit that never made it to the jury.

Pao, a former partner at Kleiner Perkins, one of the nation's biggest venture capital firms, sued the company in the most-watched sex discrimination case in the history of the Silicon Valley. But she didn't get to explain some things, and that was most painful part of her experience.

"You've never done anything for women, have you?" the opposing counsel asked snidely.

Can Technology Save the 9th Circuit?

When a judge frames the issue in a case, sometimes it's a hint about which way the hearing is going to go.

"Rebooting the Ninth Circuit: Why Technology Cannot Solve Its Problems" was the titled issue of a hearing before a Senate Judiciary Subcommittee. It was not a good sign for the American Bar Association, which weighed in on the issue.

"Contrary to the conclusory title of your hearing, the ABA believes that technological and procedural innovations have enabled the Ninth Circuit to handle caseloads efficiently and maintain a coherent and consistent body of law," Patricia Lee Refo wrote for the ABA.

So the ultimate question is whether the government will split the court of appeals. It's anybody's guess how this one is going to go.

Should Judges Be More Skeptical of Forensics?

"I'm free," Anthony Wright proclaimed. "I thank God for science."

Wright was exonerated of murder last year after 25 years in prison. He was the 344th person in the United States to be exonerated by DNA evidence.

This month, judges at the U.S. Ninth Circuit Judicial Council learned more about how faulty forensic evidence leads to exonerations. Legal experts told them to be skeptical of methods that don't pass scientific muster.

How Can Your Law Firm Use Facial Recognition Technology?

Maybe you can pick a face out of a crowd -- but how about a crowd of 10,000 faces?

Didn't think so. Neither did the lawyers who were trying to prove that a plaintiff was not at certain corporate events over a span of years. They had 10 terabytes of images but not enough time or money to review them.

Facial recognition software solved their problem. Don't you just love it when law and technology come together?

Technology and the New Practice of Law

Technology and the law have a type of symbiotic relationship.

New technologies change the practice of law, and the law also molds the use of technology. They are not entirely dependent on each other, but they certainly can thrive when they co-exist.

Here are some areas where they have changed everything and the new practice of law:

Businesses, cautious about future litigation and concerned about potential eDiscovery issues, are retaining more and more electronic information generated by their business and employees. We're not just talking about emails and .doc files, either. Electronically stored information is being collected from everything from social media apps to Internet of Things devices.

All told, there's a massive amount of ESI being stored by mid-sized and large companies -- 49.3 gigs per user for email data alone, according to a recent white paper by Osterman Research. And that number is expected to grow by more than 300 percent in the next six years, to 133 gigs.

'Beetlejuice,' Tim Burton's 1988 chef d'ouevre, tells the tale of one titular ghost who is called into existence to fright and delight when his name is repeated thrice over. Just say 'Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice,' and he's transferred from the netherworld to your dining room.

The Freedom of Information Act works in a surprisingly similar way. Under the Act, government agencies that have received three or more requests for public records must make those records available on their websites. Now, public interest groups are turning to that Beetlejuice provision to help preserve public access to government data, data they fear could be removed by the current administration.

Automation Replaces About 23 Percent of Lawyer's Work

Relax, a robot will not be taking your law job -- yet.

According to researchers -- aided by computers, of course -- only 23 percent of a lawyer's tasks can be automated with current technology. After analyzing 2,000 work activities for 800 occupations, McKinsey Global Institute reported that it will be a decade before artificial intelligence will take over any lawyer jobs.

That's right, C3PO, get away from the lawyer's desk and get back to the translation business.

Court: File Sharing Waives Privilege

If you're uploading files to a file sharing website, you may as well just leave them on a park bench where everyone can see them.

That's not just a flippant phrase about the risks of file sharing, that's what the judge said in a case pending in a federal district court in Virginia. Magistrate Pamela Mead Sargent said an insurance company's decision to upload files online was "the cyber world equivalent of leaving its claims file on a bench in the public square and telling its counsel where they could find it."

"It is hard to image an act that would be more contrary to protecting the confidentiality of information than to post that information to the world wide web," she said.