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eJuror Will Lead To New List of Jury Duty Excuses 191

coondoggie writes "Now you can say your jury duty request got lost in the cloud, or that the network was down, or the Internet ate it. That's because the US District Court system is close to completing a rollout of its national eJuror system that lets prospective jurors have the option of responding to their jury questionnaire or summons online. About 80 of the 94 US district courts have had the eJuror software installed and more than half of those courts are already live on the system."
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eJuror Will Lead To New List of Jury Duty Excuses

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  • Jury selection (Score:5, Insightful)

    by girlintraining ( 1395911 ) on Friday November 19, 2010 @03:37PM (#34284618)

    First: For those of you who think avoiding jury duty is an option rather than a duty -- thanks for avoiding one of the simplest and most basic requests that our country makes of you in exchange for citizenship. You must be proud.

    Second: If the request gets lost, it gets lost. It doesn't matter whether it's eaten by a computer, an angry mail processing machine, or the dog. Lost is lost. You'll get another summons.

  • by Shakrai ( 717556 ) on Friday November 19, 2010 @03:38PM (#34284624) Journal

    but is it really any worse than the way its done already?

    Yes. It cuts out the ability to look witnesses and the defendant in the eye. Non-verbal communication is important, particularly when someone's liberty is on the line.

  • My answer ... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Archangel Michael ( 180766 ) on Friday November 19, 2010 @03:46PM (#34284692) Journal

    I'm a Libertarian who believes in Jury Nullification. I also believe that as a jury member I can ask questions of witnesses beyond the questions directed by either side, and I won't hesitate to raise my hand to ask questions neither side is willing to ask to get at the truth neither side is really after.

    If we're bound by the idea that if it is a "law" that it is legal, then we end up with the Senator Palpatine style "I will make it legal"

  • Re:I'm all for it, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by HogGeek ( 456673 ) on Friday November 19, 2010 @03:49PM (#34284718)

    I hope you, and others that "dodge" jury duty, get into legal trouble soon!

    So you too can be judged by the "unfortunate ones" of the world that weren't "smart enough" to get out of jury duty. You know, the illiterate morons that end up finding the innocent guilty, and the guilty innocent...

    Why do you feel it's ok to take an essential part of the civic infrastructure for granted?

  • Re:I'm all for it, (Score:4, Insightful)

    by brainboyz ( 114458 ) on Friday November 19, 2010 @03:57PM (#34284830) Homepage

    Maybe because it costs some of us hundreds or thousands of dollars per day we're not able to work? Because they hold court during hours most people are working? Because they have so many stupid nonsensical rules that they use more juries than they should to prosecute people in the course of "protecting people from themselves?"

    Some people don't like wasting their time with the joke.

  • by blair1q ( 305137 ) on Friday November 19, 2010 @04:01PM (#34284870) Journal

    First, because the system is based on history, not logic. It was invented before logic was, and it has to complete its task even in a total absence of logic. If the lawyers choose to introduce logic, then that's their strategic choice. Generally one will, and the other won't.

    Second, because the trial changes as it goes on, and argument is fluid. Information from one part of one person's testimony can drastically alter how other witnesses testify, and whether they even do testify.

    Third, because questioning witnesses elicits more honest responses than prepared statements do, and watching someone answer a tough question elicits more information than the words in the answer gives.

    Fourth, because part of the purpose of the trial is presenting the case to the community. Both to give the community closure and to keep the government's pointy end open to scrutiny. Merely adjudicating the facts of the case is something any king can do from the bathroom.

  • Re:Jury selection (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Archangel Michael ( 180766 ) on Friday November 19, 2010 @04:03PM (#34284908) Journal

    I don't avoid the jury duty. I just know that I'm never going to be chosen because of my views and my knowledge on a broad range of topics would keep the BS from either Liar .. er Lawyer out of the deliberations.

  • Re:I'm all for it, (Score:5, Insightful)

    by timeOday ( 582209 ) on Friday November 19, 2010 @04:06PM (#34284936)
    Wow, what a nice summary of contemporary America. "I want everything set up perfectly to maximize my rights and my productivity, and I shouldn't have to pay or sacrifice anything for it because it's all thanks to me and nobody else!"
  • Re:My answer ... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by blair1q ( 305137 ) on Friday November 19, 2010 @04:18PM (#34285064) Journal

    >If we're bound by the idea that if it is a "law" that it is legal, then we end up with the Senator Palpatine style "I will make it legal"

    The law was made by representatives elected by the people. Until the constitution says there's a Senator Palpatine who has the power to make something legal on his own, that's not a good analogy.

    Juries are bound to follow the law. They get to decide if the facts in the case fit the law. They don't get to decide not to convict even though the facts fit the law. Their value is that they are citizens, not sinecured magistrates who have the physical power to write down that the facts fit the case when they don't, or to color the facts in a way that a dozen average people would find untrue. The jury system guarantees that at least 12 citizens will be witnesses to the trial, are the focus of the presentation of evidence, and will validate its outcome as a true application of the law.

    If you think the law is wrong, it's your job to get it changed before it gets to court by electing people who represent you and petitioning them for changes to the law. It's the court's job to apply it as it's written (in a statute or a past judgment), and it's an apellate courts' job to deal with situations where one of the parties to the case thinks the process did not get followed properly or the law inappropriately conflicts with another law (up to and including the constitution).

  • by Shakrai ( 717556 ) on Friday November 19, 2010 @04:45PM (#34285380) Journal

    You realize that you are already losing a few months worth of earnings to taxes right? Why are you complaining about Jury Duty but not the percentage of your income that you never even see because Uncle Sam compels your employer to send it directly to him?

  • Re:I'm all for it, (Score:3, Insightful)

    by rubycodez ( 864176 ) on Friday November 19, 2010 @07:57PM (#34287450)

    ah, but mandatory jury duty is a mistake, a lapse in the judgment of those that founded our country just as slavery. For it too is involuntary servitude with inadequate compensation. So either it must be done by volunteers, or by proper compensation. By eliminating the 80% of cases that are unnecessary (frivolous lawsuits, prison-system-cartel fodder of victim-less crimes), we could institute a judicial system worthy of a truly free people.

Mathemeticians stand on each other's shoulders while computer scientists stand on each other's toes. -- Richard Hamming