The longer the delay, the greater the risk," McCormick said in announcing the scheduling plan. She added that while few cases warrant a trial longer than five days, she would entertain a request from either side to extend the trial if necessary.
Even with this early scheduling dispute, the stakes were high for Twitter. The company was already struggling to grow its user base and advertising business before Musk's involvement, and now it and many other tech companies are pulling back on costs amid rampant inflation and fears of a recession. Twitter needs a swift resolution to the battle with Musk in order to limit the uncertainty for its shareholders, employees and customers, and any fallout for its business that could be exacerbated by costly, prolonged litigation.
Although Tuesday's hearing was largely a procedural one, it offered a look at how each side may approach what is likely to be a messy litigation process. It may also provide a glimpse as to how the judge overseeing the case is approaching the dispute.
"There may be hints from what she asks and what she says, and what they say, during the hearing that may tell us something," said Carl Tobias, a professor at the University of Richmond School of Law.