New technology is seeing increasing use in Chinese court cases, with artificial intelligence (AI) and blockchain reportedly being employed to assist in rendering judgement.
As reported by Cointelegraph, Zhang Wen, president of the Beijing Internet Court, cited these technologies during the 2019 Forum on China Intellectual Property Protection. He noted to the local Global Times news outlet that of the 41 cases so far concluded using blockchain, parties chose to settle out of court rather than litigate in 40 cases with compelling evidence delivered via blockchain. This in turn helped to develop social credibility for the measures.
Zhang added that the court had deployed blockchain in 58 cases to collect and provide evidence, with the current use of prioritizing efficiency over accuracy. He nevertheless went as far as to suggest that the system was heading towards a future when it could be possible to see “an AI judge sitting at the podium.”
In December 2018, an internet court in Hangzhou, capital of Zhejiang province, turned to blockchain to help online writers combat piracy. The judge, Wang Jiangqiao, posited that because blockchain technology ensures the inalterability of data, all digital footprints stored in the judicial ledger system should have legal bearing.
In September of the same year, China’s Supreme Court ruled that evidence authenticated via blockchain would be binding in legal disputes, declaring that internet courts shall recognize digital data submitted as evidence if relevant parties collected and stored the data using blockchain “with digital signatures, reliable timestamps and hash value verification or via a digital deposition platform, and can prove the authenticity of such technology used.”
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