Mediation and arbitration have been the sleepy old bears of the legal profession. Even under their newer name, alternative dispute resolution, or ADR, they haven’t gotten much respect in the macho world of litigation, where scorched-earth, winner-take-all approaches are preferred. But the hibernation may be over. The old bears are being taught to dance to an Internet tune, and they could put on quite a show.

Necessity is driving this turn to ADR. As the Internet draws the world together, people are discovering there are no courts in cyberspace. ADR, particularly online ADR, is the fast and obvious answer. In addition, online ADR offers advantages that can be used to resolve off-line disputes.

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