I found this article on Cornell University’s website fascinating! I knew there were already some forms of “tone meter” when you text or message through some applications, but this is next level. I can certainly see how AI could do a better job at being unbiased, but I think the human factor or being able to read body language and power dynamics are also extremely important in mediation. What do you think?
Law.com posted an article discussing how fortunate it is that the legal profession can thrive virtually as the many other industries are unable to adapt. They focus a few paragraphs on Mediation specifically and how it is essentially the same as in-person:
The Zoom technology is remarkably easy to use. The virtual mediations I’ve done so far have involved participants covering the entire spectrum of computer prowess, and all have fared quite well. More importantly, the real engine of successful mediations–personal connections—hits on all eight cylinders in the virtual format. Following one recent virtual mediation of a significant injury case, the defense attorney told me how she was able to adjust her comments in the opening by reading the reaction of the plaintiff on the video. Just as with in-person mediations, the real-time feedback is there.
So, from the perspective of our clients, virtual mediations have been an unequivocal success. And I can also say that, from a mediator’s perspective, it is no less so. Success for mediators comes only when we can personally connect with the parties and counsel. A quote attributed to Teddy Roosevelt says, “People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.” At the mediation of any significant case, there comes a point when I am leading clients, step by step, to a place that, though necessary to get to, is tough terrain to traverse. If they don’t trust my judgment and motivation, they won’t take my hand. If you had asked me, even weeks ago, if this level of rapport could be established over a virtual medium, I would have said, “No way.” I was wrong. Happily, thankfully, mercifully, I was very wrong.
Done Medation plans to resume all mediations via videoconferencing using Zoom as mentioned in this article. To schedule a mediation for yourself, contact us today.
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