“Be Simon Cowell for a Day!” and Other Catchy New Court System Slogans . . .

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4 Responses

  1. dave hoffman says:

    I don’t think that people who serve on juries have bad experiences (at least, that’s not what the research says) and I don’t think that people don’t want to serve because they fear they will have a bad time. I think they can’t afford it — that their employers won’t give them credit for public service (if they aren’t self-employed) and that as a result serving on a jury takes food off the table. Making the experience more palatable doesn’t have to involve making it seem more fun. It merely requires individuals to be compensated fairly.

  2. Adam Benforado says:

    I haven’t seen the data, but that seems right that people who serve on juries generally have good experiences. I also agree that finding a way to more fairly compensate those who serve is probably the most effective way to decrease jury service evasion.

    Still, my sense is that there are many people out there who could actually afford to serve and nonetheless try to get out of it (that is, they incorrectly believe that it will be far more disruptive to their lives and far less enjoyable than it actually is). For these individuals, rather than appealing to their sense of duty, I think it might be more effective to reframe the experience as a positive one.

  3. JKM says:

    Interesting point. By attempting to make it at least seem more fun, it could easily bring the costs down for some individuals at the margins, even if it does not work for everyone. I can’t think of how it would make anything worse.

    Thus, I agree that there is reason enough to attempt your idea.

  4. Bill Reynolds says:

    I get called for jury duty every other year. I spend a day cramped and uncomfortable in a room where it is difficult even to read. Voir dire is even worse. I am never chosen, in part because I have usually taught someone and in part because lawyers dont want profs judging them again and in part because educated people are not appreciated on juries. If chosen, the trial will be boring–they are slow, lots of bench conferences, etc. Jury duty is not fun.