One of the fundamental instruments that every lawyer has at their disposal, are the basic provisions, and the current positions, of law. Not “a law”, not “the law”. Just law. A changing, constantly evolving thing, a system. And this system being one of the fundamental instruments of our society, it makes sense that accessing, interpreting, and understanding the ramifications of legal process through data is a prerogative of citizen movements.
The law is reason, free from passion.
– Aristotle [Book III, 1287a.32]
During our until now only major event with the Open Knowledge network, the 2013 OKCon, we organized a hackathon at the University of Geneva dedicated to legal data. In the past five years I have often looked back at what we learned and started then, and wondered what could be achieved with more effort in this somewhat overlooked area of open data activism.
In recent times, this meant supporting the efforts of innovators in the legal profession, like @dhuerlimann
But, what’s a hack like me got to do in these kind of high level discussions? At this point I would like to acknowledge the efforts of our neighbouring chapters like Open Knowledge Deutchland (Offene Gesetze) and Regards Citoyens in France for keeping the path to “citizen legal” well lit.
For over two years now, the new Swiss Legal Tech Association has been upgrading the status quo, making it possible for us to support and participate in innovative legal projects like Entscheidsuche.ch and Privacy Butler.
Let’s smarten up for the testing times ahead. And, lest I forget, big kudos to @lauxandlaw for many years of service and huge contributions to the open data cause. This whole Advent’s calendar is partially an answer to your “landscape” suggestions of some years back.
Thank you all.
Discover more Open Source Advents at opensource-challenge.ch