Lawyers Replaced by Computers? Not quite yet…

I enjoyed participating in the debate yesterday at LawFest 2017 https://lawfest.nz/SessionsPage/the-annual-lawfest-debate/

Graham Kohler QC and I argued against the entirely misconceived proposition: “That legal perfection will be achieved when lawyers are replaced with computers”.

For my part, I relied on Elon Musk’s warning that “artificial intelligence is our biggest existential threat” and suggested that the pursuit of justice requires a careful balance between moral and ethical values and interests and that it cannot be reduced to simple binary choices. Instead, I contended that the law represents and embodies well-established social norms and values and mediates between science and society.

I concluded by saying that the bottom line is pretty stark: if we replace lawyers we replace humanity itself!

These are important issues which we are going to have to grapple with sooner rather than later.

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