Could You Use Artificial Intelligence to Check Whether a Contract Complies with “A Manual of Style for Contract Drafting”?

[Updated 4 September 2023. The premise of this post—using AI to apply a set of rules—might be unrealistic, so you might want to skip this!] Today someone asked me this in an email message: Are you exploring training AI to incorporate A Manual of Style for Contract Drafting for proofreading contracts? I could see value in a plug-in that incorporates … Read More

Using CrossCheck to Police Your Defined Terms and Look for Other Glitches: Q&A with Steven Gullion

These days I don’t write much about legaltech for contracts. There’s way too much of it. And I don’t do deals, so I’m not in much of a position to put such products through their paces. But I’m making an exception with this Q&A with Steven Gullion, of CrossCheck. CrossCheck looks for technical glitches that can afflict use of defined … Read More

Revisiting “Good Enough” in Contract Drafting

An exchange of tweets by Ron Friedmann and Casey Flaherty (here) yesterday prompted much cocktail-party conversation on the state of the legal market, with an emphasis on the implications of the new variant of artificial intelligence known as ChatGPT. (I wrote about ChatGPT in this blog post.) A recurring theme in the discussion was the notion that contracts can be … Read More

Thoughts on AI and “The Last Human Mile”

Recently I noticed this article on Artificial Lawyer. The title is Generative Legal AI + “The Last Human Mile”, and it’s about limits to applying AI to legal work. It says this: The last mile problem is a well-developed theory that many systems fail because there are some key steps at the end that cannot be done properly and that ruins … Read More

ChatGPT Won’t Fix Contracts

If you spend any time on law-related social media, you’ve probably encountered chatter about ChatGPT, an AI chatbot system built on OpenAI’s Generative Pre-trained Transformer 3 (GPT-3), a language model that uses deep learning to produce human-like text. (Yes, we’re talking artificial intelligence.) Drafting Contracts People have experimented with ChatGPT by asking it to do all sorts of things. (To … Read More

Offering Contract Content: LegalTech Dips Its Toes in the Water

Apart from looking at a few AI-and-contracts services, I long ago stopped paying much attention to legaltech services relating to contracts. Because I don’t do deals, I don’t need what’s on offer, so I’m not in a good position to evaluate it. And the space is so active that even if I wanted to kick some tires, I wouldn’t know … Read More

The Hole in Corporate Contracting Where Quality Should Be

Last week I noticed Will EY Law Change The Legal Delivery Paradigm?, by Mark Cohen. It’s about EY, the multinational professional services partnership. Here are the first two paragraphs: EY’s leadership recently green lighted a major restructuring, ending months of heated speculation. The plan has two key prongs: (1) EY’s audit and advisory businesses will split; and (2) the advisory business will … Read More

Flipping the Table

On social media, it’s easy enough to find people discussing basic examples of suboptimal contract usages, such as exuberant use of all capitals. Such venting gets plenty of engagement, but generally I don’t join in. I’m reconciled to saying the same thing over and over again. For example, a search for efforts on my blog pulls up over 200 posts. … Read More

Document Assembly Is Easy, Contracts Are Hard

The image above is one of 12 panels from this tweet by Jordan Furlong containing his graphic entitled “Types of Future of Law Paper.” It’s a riff on this xkcd webcomic entitled “Types of Scientific Paper.” Document Assembly Has Underperformed Obviously, for that one panel to work, it has to be grounded in reality. Document assembly is a straightforward technology … Read More

A Tech-Only Solution for Contract Review, Or Not: BlackBoiler and LegalSifter

I used to keep track of technology related to the contracts process, but now I do so only sporadically—there’s way too much for the casual observer to keep up with. That’s even the case regarding a subset of that technology—products that aim to facilitate review of contracts. That’s of interest to me, as I’m chief content officer of LegalSifter, one … Read More