Information overload! 13 March 2012
Advocates are increasingly expected to process information from a variety of sources and of variable relevance. For hard cases, contextualising the issues and presenting them in terms of society’s expectations and values, within the fabric and continued development of the law, is essential. But with the amount of information now at our disposal, it is becoming more and more difficult to discern a coherent pattern. Digital information is not assembled or packaged for us. It lacks a cohesive architecture and is subject to the vagaries of syntax when we search for it.
There are no easy answers to these questions. Suffice to say that, in my view, good representation increasingly demands excellent research. Lawyers need to know how to select the relevant information portals, unlock them, identify the information they need, and process it into cohesive patterns that fit within a context, and which will ultimately resonate with the decision-maker they seek to impress.
Straightforward? Anything but!