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The Top 8 Advantages of AI-Enabled Legal Transcription

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Transcription in law is certainly nothing new. But, this decades-old necessity in the legal system has come a long way from the totally manual processes that were once the industry norm.

Cutting-edge transcription vendors are harnessing developments in AI speech-to-text technology and incorporating latest advancements into their solutions. All of this helps to boost accuracy to near-perfect levels in order to meet sky-high industry standards in law.

In recent years, the legal industry has experienced a paradigm shift in the delivery model for various services. This model, coined Legal Process Outsourcing (LPO) involves delegating various processes, like transcription, to external vendors, allowing law firms and legal departments to minimize costs, increase flexibility and focus on more critical activities. Most importantly, this allows organizations to leverage the latest technologies that are typically not available in-house.

The legal sector heavily relies on audio and video files, as all processes are typically recorded for use in cases. All of these files must be transcribed to maintain accurate records, which have the power to make or break a case. An AI-based solution drastically speeds up this notoriously slow process, giving legal professionals faster access to precise information so that cases can be solved quicker.

Here are the top 8 advantages of AI-enabled transcription for the legal sector:

1. High Accuracy: The use of machine learning algorithms ensure that the technology learns from any mistakes and keeps improving with time, further boosting accuracy

2. Easy: Users can flexibly upload files and download completed transcripts through multiple online channels

3. Fast: Automating the majority of the transcription process significantly cuts down on turnaround time and boosts efficiency without compromising on high accuracy

4. Scalability: AI technology reduces turnaround time and enables growth by allowing organizations to transcribe a large volume of files without allocating valuable in-house resources for the task

5. Security: Confidentiality is one of the most significant concerns when it comes to legal transcription. Vendors that leverage AI utilize algorithms to monitor all activity and ensure that only clients have access to their files

6. Customization: Transcription of audio files is done effectively irrespective of the file format and is then delivered in the required template

7. Cost Effective: AI transcription is cheaper than paying the salary for an in-house employee to perform the task. It also enables law professionals to spend their time on core activities that boost profitability

8. 24/7 Availability: A web-based platform can be accessed anytime, regardless of traditional business hours or time differences

AI-based transcription technologies also open new opportunities for organizations that can benefit from text-based information derived from audio and video content. This information can provide index and metadata enrichment to be used in other legal processes, such as eDiscovery and document review. Moreover, automating transcription also reduces the risk for subjective interpretation of legal documents that can affect the outcome of a case.

Despite what sensationalist headlines may suggest, the rise of AI doesn’t mean that robots are out to steal anyone’s job. On the contrary, AI has immense potential to allow law professionals to take on a more strategic role, by leaving tasks like transcription to the machines. The purpose of AI, then, is not to replace legal jobs, but rather to augment them with enhanced speed and accuracy.

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The Curb Cut effect explained

What is a curb cut?

Sometimes easy to overlook, a curb cut is a small ramp that can be found at most intersections, between the sidewalk and the street. You wouldn’t know it by looking at it, but this tiny, almost imperceptible feature of most urban centers has redefined accessibility as we know it. Let’s take a closer look…

A brief history

Kalamazoo, Michigan, 1940’s: The city installed curb cuts at four downtown corners as a pilot project to help with the employment of disabled veterans.

Berkeley, California, 1970: In the midst of the revolutionary spirit of the 60’s and 70’s, a group called the Rolling Quads, led by disability activist Ed Roberts, demanded curb cuts on main roads. They even went so far as to take to the streets at night and use sledgehammers to smash curbs and build their own ramps, forcing the city into action.

Denver, Colorado, 1980: Disability activists staged a protest demanding curb cuts, blocking traffic until city officials gave in. Demonstrators in wheelchairs whacked at concrete curbs with sledgehammers to get their point across.

The Americans with Disabilities Act, 1990: Although not the first piece of legislation to address widespread accessibility, the passing of the ADA was a landmark event due to its unprecedented reach. It mandated access and accommodation in all public spaces, including business, lodging, transportation and employment, making curb cuts the commonplace feature we know today.

Unexpected ripple effect

Surprisingly, the benefits of curb cuts extended to everyone, not just people in wheelchairs or those with limited mobility:

  • Parents pushing strollers
  • Workers lugging heavy loads
  • Travelers wheeling luggage
  • Runners and skateboarders

Transforming Accessibility in Higher Education

Like the curb cuts that ended up making mobility easier for so many people beyond the intended recipients, accommodations in schools that were originally designed for students with disabilities end up benefiting the entire university community.

Transcription and captioning is a prime example of this phenomenon. Of course, these services enable accessibility for students who are deaf or HOH. But the curb cut effect comes into play when the positive effects spread to the entire student body – including students who speak English as a second language, and students who prefer to learn by reading.

In fact, the number of students without hearing difficulties who use captioned video is on the rise. More and more students are reporting that this is an essential tool in their learning process, with tangible effects on academic success. According to a study conducted at San Francisco State University, students who used captioned video achieved a full GPA point increase compared to students who did not.

Greater Impact
Beyond the world of higher education, there are many examples of the curb cut effect that have profoundly impacted our lives for the better, including:

  • Seat belt legislation: Laws were initially adopted to protect young children. Years later, almost every state has firm seat belt laws in place, saving an estimated 317,000 lives since 1975
  • Smoking laws: Disgruntled flight attendants led the charge to ban smoking on airplanes, sparking possibly the most notable public-health campaign of all time. Since the 1960’s, smoking has largely been banished in public spaces and tobacco consumption has been cut in half

As technological advances continue to revolutionize the world of higher education, the positive effects extend to everyone. Like the curb cuts that enabled greater mobility for wheelchair users and other groups of people, tools like transcription and captioning solutions benefit all students and drive innovation further.

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