There was a rather troubling case in NJ in which one person was text messaging another individual who was driving a car. The person sending the text knew they were driving but sent the text anyway – the individual receiving the text was looking at that text when they just happen to run over a pedestrian – whoops! There was a lawsuit and the person sending the text was considered at least partly at fault and was ordered to pay damages – ouch. Now we have new case law on the books. But let me discuss this philosophically for a moment if I might.
What about a GPS signal which is transmitting to a device in a car, the system knows the car is moving, how fast, and exactly where it is, so if someone crashes their car while looking at that device is the satellite liable – or the artificial intelligent software? What about the satellite builder who built it for the purpose of navigating or what about the satellite launching company, the software code writer, what about the car manufacturer who puts it into the car as a standard feature? Do we really need to be suing everyone under the Sun, or satellite?
The ramifications of such silly lawsuits and bad case law is ever reaching with no end in sight – too many lawyers, too many rules, too many laws to protect the next Darwin Award Winners, I say. Anyway, now that I got your mind thinking let me ask another question here. If lawyers are going to subpoena text messaging records for every accident in the future, then someone has to keep those records, and if they are kept, then what about privacy. We just got through an overblown mass media frenzy over the NSA issue of meta-data searching of emails and phone records – so I guess since the technology exists for text messaging everyone has that too.
Thus, law enforcement can get it, lawyers can get it, and you can be liable for something that may not have been your fault, but how are you really going to prove you didn’t know the other person was operating a train, plane, or automobile at the time – you can’t. No one to this day has been able to prove to a jury that they didn’t kick their dog. Do you see that point as well? Okay so, that is your mental thinking exercise for today, please think on it.