Morning Briefing: Tokyo partner in running for A&O senior role

by Steve Randall16 Dec 2015
Tokyo partner in running for A&O senior role
Tokyo-based M&A partner Simon Black has been confirmed as one of the candidates for the forthcoming managing partner election at Allen & Overy. The international law firm’s vote takes place in February 2016 with Black being the only Asia-Pac candidate. He’ll be up against Andrew Ballheimer, Andrew Trahair and Michael Castle. The winner will replace Wim Dejonghe who is in the running for senior partner. That election also takes place in February and includes Tim House, Stephen Kensell and Michel Struys in the bid to replace David Morley.
International law firm helps train female lawyers in Nepal
DLA Piper’s non-profit New Perimeter has partnered with Canada’s Women Lawyers Joining Hands and the Nepal Bar Association to offer ongoing legal education to women in Kathmandu. The partnership will enable female lawyers in the country to increase their skills and advance their careers, especially in the corporate commercial field. Lawyers from DLA Piper were involved in a 5-day workshop this month which included a practical course on legal ethics, business ethics, and corporate and commercial law.
Computers beat humans in this court function
A test conducted by the University of Michigan found that computers were able to outperform humans in courtroom lie-detecting. The researchers used real court testimonies to try to determine whether the computer was able to spot lies; in 75 per cent of case it was, compared with a detection rate of 50 per cent for humans. Engadget reports that the software focused on things that humans wouldn’t necessarily be able to judge such as how many times a defendant said “I” or looked at the questioner. Technology of this sort is being honed to include metrics such as the heart rate and breathing of those giving evidence, using thermal imaging which allows for non-contact usage.
The cat, the coffee and the lawsuit
The company that owns the rights to the internet sensation Grumpy Cat is suing a coffee retailer for overstepping the mark (trademark?) on the use of its brand. Consumerist reports that Ohio-based Grumpy Cat Ltd.’s lawsuit claims that it licensed the brand to Grenade Beverages to launch a Grumpy Cat Grumppucino with the possibility of further products after further negotiation. It says that Grenade has produced further products despite the rights owner forbidding it. Additionally, the coffee producer is selling its products on a website which Grumpy Cat Ltd says it must hand over as it infringes the firm’s IP. Grenade denies the allegations.