Well, that was fast! Just a couple of weeks ago we were reporting about the world’s first robot lawyer, an AI chatbot from DoNotPay, and now it’s already going away.
Famed consumer rights company DoNotPay had launched an AI robot that used ChatGPT. The company planned to test it in both a real courtroom and one case hearing held on Zoom, in both cases without informing the judge.
The company thought there would be no way of getting caught, since they planned for the defendant to wear AirPods inside the court and rely on the “hearing accessibility standards in this particular court, which offer a loophole allowing the use of Apple AirPods.” Through those AirPods, the DoNotPay robot lawyer would have coached the defendant.
So, what happened?
Obviously, the news about DoNotPay’s stunt traveled far and wide and the company’s founder and CEO, Joshua Browder, found himself in hot water.
In a tweet this Wednesday, he said that “After receiving threats from State Bar prosecutors, it seems likely they will put me in jail for 6 months if I follow through with bringing a robot lawyer into a physical courtroom.”
Scared by the prospect of spending 6 months in jail for helping with a $200 speeding ticket, Browder backed off completely from the idea of a robot lawyer in an actual court.
“We’ve basically shifted away from this legal direction and we’re doing all consumer rights,” Browder told Gizmodo, who reached out to clarify DoNotPay’s sudden change of plans.
Fortunately, the company plans to continue helping people avoid fines or abusive charges, as they did before flying too close to the sun in the US judicial system.