Mediation traditionally takes place when conflicting parties sit together with a mediator and try to work out a solution to their conflict in a “friendly” manner. Usually the parties face one another in the presence of a mediator.
Over the last two decades there were attempts to replace such meetings with video-conference meetings in order to save time and traveling costs. International companies and organizations have largely implemented these methods. However, it seems that video meetings remained secondary to the traditional face to face meetings. Online Mediation became a necessity when getting together was impractical, due to geographic distance and time.
During the Covid 19 pandemic, online communication became used world widely for practical reasons, since people had to refrain from contact, regardless of distance and time. For the same reasons, online mediation is used in Israel and legitimized by the courts.
Technological video means such as zoom and whatsapp video have become popular all over, especially in schools and universities. Video Conference meetings are no longer secondary to the traditional face to face meetings, but have become an equally legitimate alternative.
Likewise, online mediation has received another validation and legitimacy. There is no further need to postpone alternative dispute resolutions. These disputes can be resolved immediately via online mediation with nothing more than a computer and a camera.
In online mediation, participants join the meeting in the environment of their home, office or other place in which they feel comfortable.
Reasons to engage in online mediation:
· Geographic distances
· Reasons related to the Covid 19 pandemic, such as social distancing, lockdown and quarantines.
· Other reasons related to both geographic distance as well as health issues.
In online mediation, the principles and rules of the classic mediation remain the same while preserving the ethics rules and adapting the technological means as necessary. Accordingly, the mediation process is adapted to the needs of the parties. In addition, there is a possibility of arranging a hybrid mediation, between parties able to attend and those unable to.
Having experienced both means of mediation online and in person, I’ll be happy to offer my services at the means of your choice.