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Internet Based/Virtual Jury Research: Part 2

January 17th, 2019|

My previous post outlined the reasons why online “mock jury” research is not in reality “mock jury” research. In this, related, post, I will discuss additional constraints and limitations of online “mock jury” research. I will also add that I have concerns about confidentiality with online research. Confidentiality is more than just having a confidentiality agreement signed. With online research, controlling the ability of the participants to capture information through such things as screen shots, or the use of, for example, a cell phone camera, is minimal. Further, putting the information “out there” on the internet creates hacking risks, or

Crazy Courthouse Story #1 Client on other side of this case

January 15th, 2019|

Long time readers of David’s and my blog may remember the 5 part series we wrote, entitled “Crazy Mock Juror Story” and/or the 5 part series we wrote on “Crazy Lawyer Story.” We are always eager to share some of our funny, or at a minimum, entertaining, stories about the serious work we do on behalf of the attorneys who are our clients. In this 5 part series, I will share some of my more memorable “Crazy Courthouse Stories.” Some of these stories are funny, while others are tragic, but they all have in common their true life experience. The

Internet Based/Virtual Jury Research: Part 1

January 10th, 2019|

Technology is not the answer to everything. I have recently been reminded of this when talking with more than one potential client who was curious about using internet based “jury research.” Specifically, we’ve recently been asked to bid on mock jury research only to learn that the competitor’s bid was for an online “mock jury.” In another case, the client wanted an online “mock jury” for reasons that did not really make sense; I’ll get back to that. The reason I’m putting parentheses around mock juries relative to the online variety is that these are not really mock juries. There

Origin of the Jurors

December 27th, 2018|

Mock jurors may seem like a species unto themselves, but, when properly recruited, they are everyday people who are representative of the trial venue. Following the post on why Magnus controls research videos, I am commenting on the origin of the mock jurors because of another subtle detail I picked up recently in reading a competitor’s proposal. I’ll add, “Where do you get your mock jurors?” is #1 our all time frequently asked questions list. Therefore, the topic is appropriate for discussion of best and worst practices in recruiting. Magnus is, or I should say, Melissa is, a stickler for

Guitar techs versus luthiers

December 25th, 2018|

I have been playing the bass guitar for almost 20 years and I am the proud owner of several bass guitars. I am not a collector; all of my basses are for my playing pleasure. As with many things in life, from time to time, one of my basses needs to be repaired, as was the situation recently. I have spent a lot of time around musicians, mostly guitarists; guitar techs; music store staff members; owners of music studios; etc. but I know only one luthier. For those who do not have any idea what or who a luthier is,

Why We Control The Video Recordings

December 20th, 2018|

I recently had the unique opportunity to gather some “competitive intelligence” in the form of reviewing a competitor’s proposal. Hey, it fell into my lap; what was I supposed to do? Anyway, a small part of the proposal touted the idea of using a marketing research facility; in fact, this proposal was somewhat reliant on that detail. We like to work in research facilities too, but we do not make the availability of a facility a critical factor in the design or pricing of a project. These folks did. One reason some consultants rely on market research facilities is that

20, 30, 50% Research Breakdown

December 4th, 2018|

Those of us who work as trial/jury consultants usually thrive on the excitement of the research day, the day when we conduct our focus groups, mock trials, jury simulations, or employ other methods of data collection. These days, thanks to books, movies, and a certain popular television show, many people are aware of some of the things trial/jury consultants do to obtain information for our clients. However, in my work as a social psychologist who conducts litigation research, the research day represents a fraction of the work my staff and I perform on behalf of our clients. I recently considered

Never Assume – Juror Profiling

November 22nd, 2018|

During a recent mock jury session, one of the most outspoken mock jurors caught the attention of our client who was watching the proceedings remotely. This client, the general counsel of a large corporation, made a comment along the lines of “nothing about that juror’s profile would have made me think she would be good for us.” He had looked at a basic demographic profile of the woman we provided to him based on her survey answers and that information, along with his observations of her, led him to this comment. You see, despite whatever stereotypic impression he had of

The problem isn’t the problem. The problem is the response.

November 1st, 2018|

Stuff happens (you may have seen this phrase as a bumper sticker with a different “S” word). That’s right, things happen. Lightning strikes. Gremlins materialize. In our trial consulting work, there are frequent technical issues that lead to problems. With competent staff, they are kept to a minimum, but there are times when, for example, the closed circuit TV feed is bad because a cable is having a bad day. (I say bad day because inevitably we’ll switch the cable, and then, when we are back at the office after the project, try to replicate the problem, only to have

Getting the Most from Research – Digging In

October 25th, 2018|

A recent Wall Street Journal article (August 11-12, 2018) entitled “To Get the Most Out of Polls, Delve Deeper” prompted this post. Though this post was about political polls and pollsters, there were several points relevant to the world of trial consulting. One quote caught my attention, “…, remember that neither a candidate’s polling percentage nor any other single number will give you the full picture—any more than a price tag really tells you how a bottle of wine will taste,….”. We have often worked with seemed attorneys who were, perhaps, new to using mock trials, and who focus on