Our good friends at Cornell University Law School Legal Information Institute (via Rob Richards) posted a very interesting article on December 22, 2011 regarding the potential for the use of mobile telephone messaging/SMS for legal services. The author, Sean Martin McDonald (founder of frontlinesms.com), argues that the ubiquity of mobile telephones provides great potential for many legal services including legal client intake and referral, client and case management. And I would add training and document verification as other possibilities.
Bridging "the last mile" between the clients and legal services (including courts) are important. The author concludes the article with the following:
"I don’t think any of this will square me with my property-law professor. I’m not sure I’ll ever fix property law. But I do think that by reaching out to new populations using the technologies in their pockets, we can make a difference in the way people interact with the law. And even if that’s just a little bit, even if it just enables one percent more people to protect their homes, start a business, or pursue a better life, isn’t that worth it?"Hear, hear!