John Browning, a litigation attorney with a large firm in Dallas and prolific author on social media law, has written a very persuasive article in the Connecticut Law Tribune in which he extolls the importance of researching jurors online. For those who need to be convinced about the value of online juror research, I highly recommend Browning’s opinion piece entitled Researching Jurors On the Internet is Not Just Permissible, But Necessary. Browning’s article was written in direct response to an earlier op-ed by the paper which criticized the practice of researching jurors.
Browining’s piece like most of his other work is well written and hits the key points regarding researching jurors. The one thing that I would add is that most of today’s jurors would not be surprised by the fact that attorneys investigate them online. This is because the practice has become so widespread in society. It seems that everyone from jurors to employers to landlords to insurance companies to police officers goes on social media to discover information about other people.