Kristin Currey Joins DTI
DTI (née Document Technologies Inc.) -- which offers discovery services, facilities management, and knowledge process outsourcing -- has named Kristin Currey as its new director of business development, West region -- part of DTI's national sales team.
Reached in Los Angeles, where she is based, Currey said her "primary duties are to bring marketing to in-house, corporate counsel to help them manage and control costs around e-discovery and litigation management.
Asked what is the biggest problem facing e-discovery, Currey answered quickly. "It's not regulated -- you can have people running businesses out of their garage. There are no standards," she said. As for potential answers to that problem, she suggests that vendors and providers should have to go through standards testing.
Read the full story here.
The 24/7 Andrew Peck Show
Greetings from LegalTech West Coast in relatively-smog free and sunny Los Angeles. Day one was full of energy and standing-room only presentations with, as usual, tons of e-discovery in the seminar rooms (and on the busy exhibit hall floor). Day 2 is today (May 23), at the downtown Westin Bonaventure -- one day tickets are available if you want to head over and get some education, demos, and CLE credits.
Topic A among the L.A. EDD crowd, as expected, is the closely-watched Da Silva Moore case, where U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge Andrew Peck has ordered the use of computer-assisted coding (aka predictive coding). Law Technology News is one of those closely-watching, our most recent story is here.
On the blawg-o-sphere, attorney Sharon Nelson, (left) president of Sensei Enterprises, has been monitoring the DSM sideshow in her ride the lightening blog. See her latest post, "Da Silva Moore: EDD's Version of Keeping Up with the Kardashians," is here.
Peck and his Second District colleague Lisa Smith gave a terrific program Thursday evening at the New York City chapter of Women in Discovery -- demonstrating his trademark wit and substantive knowledge. See "Federal Judges Preside Over Women in E-Discovery Meeting."
But Tuesday's LTWC keynote address reminded us that Peck isn't a one-trick pony doin' nuttin' but e-discovery 24/7/365. (He did win LTN's 2011 Champion of Technology Award). Peck's turf also has included overseeing another matter that kept lawyers chewing their fingernails -- to say nothing of anybody with a dollar in a bank. Kevin Genirs (left). In his keynote address yesterday, "2008 v. 2012: Lessons from the Lehman Brothers," described how Peck oversaw the frantic, sleep-deprived mega-lawyered transactions under excruciating deadlines that ultimately resulted in the sale of Lehman Brothers ("for the price of our building") to Barclays, praising Peck for recognizing the global impact of the sale on the stability of financial markets, and Peck's nonstop efforts to get the deal consumated. Genirs, who had been general counsel, investment banking, at Lehman's, was one of the 10,000 Lehman workers who had new jobs with Barclays when the sun rose the next day.
Later this morning, check out www.lawtechnologynews.com for my colleague Michael Roach's report on "Under Fire: Defending and Challenging Technology-Assisted Review," which featured Irell's Tom Werner, O'Melveny's Jeffrey Flower, Oracle's Pallab Chakraborty, and moderator Andrea Gibson, from Kroll Ontrack (the sponsor of the Litigation Technology Track." Yes, DSM and Peck were front-and-center in the discussion!
Meanwhile, you can keep up with all the substance and occasional drama about Peck on our website's home page www.lawtechnologynews.com, and its E-Discovery/Compliance "channel" -- and right here at EDD Update. Onward to Day 2!
Update 5/24: Oooops. Who knew there were two Judge Pecks in the Southern District of New York! Actually, many -- and Silicon Valley consultant Mark Michels, a member of LTN's editorial advisory board, was the first to advise me that I goofed. It wasn't Andrew Peck, it was Judge James Peck, of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court. But you get my point.
P.S. Here's Michael's story
Photos: Monica Bay, except for Sharon Nelson (courtesy of ride the lightening)
Second Act: Graham Smith & William Bice
In LTN's April cover story, we profile two entrepreneurs who accomplished the dream of 99% of legal technology vendors: to create a product and/or company that caught the eye of one of the industry giants, and to see it for a lot of money. In most cases, the principals cash the check and head for exotic locations.
But at LegalTech 2012, two men who hit the jackpot decided they weren't done with our community. William Bice, founder of ProLaw practices management software, and Graham Smith, founder of LiveNote litigation support software, came back for "act two" after selling to Thomson Reuters' [prior entities]. Both launched new web-based products that compete with their original offerings -- Bice's LiquidPractice (and a second product, Exemplify, that is a document creation and comparison tool for transaction lawyers), and Smith's Opus Magnum, with integrates with other EDD software and helps uses develop their cases after they have processed their data collections.
Will they triumph twice? Check it out here.
True Grit: Finding the Right E-Discovery Formula
With LegalTech New York on our doorstep, we've putting our February issue of Law Technology News online a few days early. Around 5 p.m. EST tonight, it should be "live" at www.lawtechnologynews.com (scroll down to the "LTN Magazine" Box).
Check out our cover story about how BigLaw is trying to find just the right formula for handling e-discovery. We profile efforts at Littler; Winston & Strawn; WilmerHale; Fenwick; Pillsbury; K&L Gates; and several other firms. Littler's Paul Weiner is our "cover boy"!
Our EDD Showcase also includes Cecil Lynn III's annual Year in Review, analyzing the most important 2011 EDD opinions; Patrick Oot's Rules Road Map, explaining how EDD rules are amended: and my report from Georgetown (yes, I know that was a while back, but the conference was the day after we closed the December issue!) And of course, Craig Ball's column, addressing how to cure over-preservation.
The print edition will be at the show — if you see me, I'll show you the unintended "Easter Egg" that made me laugh out loud when I got the magazine today. Hint: it's on page 75.
You can also listen to an interview with Weiner and Winston's John Rosenthal, on the February edition of my Law Technology Now podcast, which is already live at www.lawtechnologynow.com.
Cya at the Hilton New York!
Kroll Analyzes 2011 EDD Pains & Progress
Kroll Ontrack has just released its annual analysis of e-discovery cases and trends.
Michele Lange, the company's director of discovery, explains that the company evalulated 92 cases evaluated, 67% involved preservation and spoliation, 42% addressed sanctions, and 15% involved production disputes, reports Evan Koblentz on LTN's website.
Among the conclusions of the fourth annual report were that there is increasing consensus that metadat should be included "traditional" forms of electronically stored information, notes Koblentz. Ditto for user activity on social networks.
The report also discusses new proposed model orders and cost controls, among other topics.
After several years of escalating sanctions from key judges (including the East Coast posse of Shira Scheindlin, Andrew Peck, James Francis, Paul Grimm, and John Facciola, and Texan Lee Rosenthal), lawyers are starting to push back. Especially defense lawyers with Fortune 500 clients.
One of the loudest is Robert Owen, (right) a partner at Sutherland Asbill & Brennan, who argues that electronic data discovery preservation rules (and judicial interpretation of those rules) have become too vague and too burdensome. He has proposed five new rules to remedy the perceived problems.
Continue reading here.
Don't miss the December edition of the Law Technology Now podcast — Robert Owen joins me to discuss preservation rules and reforms on the
Image: Monica Bay
Law Technology Now: Guest Craig Ball
In the April edition of my Law Technology Now podcast, I'm delighted to welcome back Austin, Texas-based attorney and e-discovery columnist Craig Ball, author of the Law Technology News column, "Ball in Your Court."
We discuss Facebook's decision to create a "one-button" tool to collect user data on its social media site, and recent e-discovery cases, including Shira Scheindlin's winter ruling about metadata requirements.
Ball's April column explains why it's just about futile to try to erase data from your computer when faced with a legal hold. Check out "Double Delete Doesn't Do It."
2010 E-Discovery Case Reviews
In our February issue of Law Technology News magazine, Cecil Lynn III did a wonderful job identifying and analyzing the most important 2010 cases that addressed electronic data discovery issues. See, "Drama & Destruction."
• David Lender, a partner at Weil Gotshal & Manges, and Andrew Peck, Magistrate Judge, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, wrote a white paper for HuronLegal, "Ten Key E-Discovery Issues to Watch in 2011: Expert Insight to Manage Successfully. Download here.
Among the issues they ID is international e-discovery, a topic LTN will continue to explore as the nuances of EDD — and compliance — continue to develop.
Says the pair: "The difficulties in electronic discovery are multiplied when some of a party’s electronically stored information is located outside the United States. Countries in the European Union, Asia, and elsewhere have data privacy statutes and blocking statutes. It may be virtually impossible for a company to comply with its U.S. discovery obligations without violating another country’s data privacy statutes. For example ... the first thing a company must do if it reasonably anticipates litigation is initiate a litigation hold; however, the mere step of preserving ESI may violate EU data privacy laws."
Tick Tock: Your Comments Wanted!
Just a reminder that the deadline is approaching for you to provide your comments on two important projects:
• Frustrated with your legal technology? Elated? Share your experience and help your peers pick the best technology vendors. The second annual ALM Technology Vendor Satisfaction Survey is underway, via a simple online survey. Conducted by our Legal Intelligence research unit, there are six categories: research libraries, e-discovery and compliance, litigation support, mobile lawyering, and office technology. The deadline to participate is April 8, 2011. To participate, click here.
Participants will receive a brief analysis of the results; full results will be available for purchase for $950 (participants get a 15% discount). The results also determine the 2011 LTN Vendor Awards, so let your voice be heard!
• The Legal Electronic Data Exchange (LEDES) Oversight Committee wants your feedback on proposed electronic data discovery task codes (See ledes.org or utbms.com).
The comment period will stay open until early May. A subcommittee recommends that 34 e-discovery task codes be added to the Litigation Code Set, numbered between 600 and 699.
Raise Your Voice
The eDiscovery Institute has changed its name and website to The Law Institute — www.lawinstitute.org — and is kicking off a survey on options for processing voice files as part of discovery, reports Joe Howie, director of metrics development and communications.
The institute is asking vendors to provide information about how they handle voice files, with the goal of "providing lawyers with information on the different options open to them for identifying relevant records, along with reasonable expectations for retrieval accuracy as well as the time and computing resources required to perform the processing," he says.
There are no fees for participating in the survey, nor will there be fees charged for the electronic version of the survey report," Howie notes.
The deadline for submissions is March 21, 2011. Howie requests that organizations planning to take the survey contact him at Joe@eDiscoveryInstitute.org.
Three's the Charm
The always-prolific Craig Ball has sprinted faster than even his usual brisk pace, with not one, not two, but three contributions to Law Technology News in the last few days. Last week, he shared details of how Facebook has added a new tool that will be a boon for e-discovery, allowing its users to easily capture their content on the sizzling social media site. (By the way, if you have not yet seen "The Social Network", don't miss it! Hopefully, it won an Oscar last night for Best Screenplay, if not Best Picture -- Aaron Sorkin's astonishing writing grabs you from the film's first images.)
Today, Ball takes a break from electronic discovery to discuss another one of his passions — Microsoft PowerPoint presentation software. Anyone who's ever seen Ball give a speech will testify that he has some of the most creative slides in our industry. In "PowerPoint Powers Up: 9 New Features," Ball raves about nine new changes to the popular software, and explains how you can use the new tools to create dynamic (and literally animated) images.
Tomorrow, visit the top stories area of our homepage to see the March edition of the "Ball in Your Court" e-discovery column, which addresses effective protocols for metadata, including a detailed list of what information should be produced. A particularly relevant topic in light of Southern District of New York Judge Shira Scheindlin's latest opinion in National Day Laborer Org. Network v. Immigration & Customs Enforcement Agency, 2011 U.S. Dist. Lexis 11655 (S.D.N.Y. Feb. 7, 2011). Here's a recent story, "Much Ado About Metadata," from Jennifer Rearden and Farrah Pepper about the ruling.
Fast Takes on Scheindlin's Latest Opinion
U.S. District Court Judge Shira Scheindlin, perhaps the most influential jurist in the development of electronic data discovery protocols, has issued another opinion that has the EDD community a-flutter, ruling on Feb. 7 that metadata must accompany documents that federal agencies send in response to Freedom of Information Act requests.
Gibson Dunn & Crutcher and consultant Michael Arkfeld quickly sent out alerts about National Day Laborer Org. Network v. Immigration & Customs Enforcement Agency, 2011 U.S. Dist. Lexis 11655 (S.D.N.Y. Feb. 7, 2011) [ Download]. Explains the firm in its Feb. 10 E-Discovery Trends: "...a dispute arose regarding the format in which the defendants produced responsive information. The defendants produced several thousand pages of documents in five non-searchable PDF files, merging all records without indicating any separate files, merging paper with electronic records, failing to produce e-mails with attachments, and failing to produce any metadata associated with the documents."
"Judge Scheindlin apparently viewed this as a teachable moment regarding how parties should produce [electronically stored information]. While not of the scope of her opinions in Zubulake and Pension Committee, her decision nevertheless provides helpful guidance regarding the form of production and the parties' obligations to discuss these issues in the Rule 26(f) meeting of counsel," observed Gibson Dunn's e-discovery team.
Among her admonishments, Scheindlin declared that "Responding parties should produce reasonably accessible metadata that will enable the receiving party to have the same ability to access, search and display information as the producing party."
In Tuesday's edition of Arkfeld's Discovery and Evidence Alert, Arkfeld notes that Scheindlin chastised litigants for failure to cooperate in discovery, with a broader net than usual. Wrote the judge: "While certainly not rising to the level of a breach of an ethical obligation, such conduct certainly shows that all lawyers -- even highly respected private lawyers, government lawyers, and professors of law -- need to make greater efforts to comply with the expectations that courts now demand of counsel with respect to expensive and time-consuming document production."
Scheindlin "reiterated the dispute resolution procedures contained in Rule 34, if the parties have a disagreement regarding the form of production," says Arkfeld, a former federal prosecutor and member of Law Technology News' editorial advisory board. The opinion offers an extensive discussion of load files and required metadata, and sets out specific metadata fields for e-mail and images, he notes.
Finally, if a party discloses the improper ESI form, they will be stuck with the tab for a redisclosure -- and parties can't downgrade the "searchability" of ESI.
Stay tuned! LTN's e-discovery columnist, Craig Ball, will be addressing the important role of metadata in an upcoming article. And for an update of key 2010 EDD cases, please see "Drama & Destruction," by Cecil Lynn III, in the February issue of LTN magazine.
Case PDF courtesy of Michael Arkfeld.
Socha & Gelbman Go High Tech
Among the famous "couples" of legal technology (no, not THAT kind of partners, no Brangelinas!) are Minnesota consultants George Socha and Tom Gelbmann — who have been monitoring electronic data discovery vendors since 2003. They conduct exhaustive research, publish an summary of the results every August in Law Technology News, and make drill-down information available to subscribers.
Through 2008, their LTN report included both analysis and detailed charts, ranking vendors both for overall achievement, and comparing vendors within specific areas (e.g., identification, preservation, collection, etc.).
But in 2009, the pair (who also run the Electronic Discovery Reference Model www.edrm.net) decided to end the tradition of ranking, because, ironically, it had become way too successful. Instead of doing appropriate due diligence, firms and individuals would simply rely on the Soc-mann rankings — which chilled the two consultants, because doing so defeated the whole purpose of their research: to help folks evaluate vendors, not just grab a list. They talked about the decision in this Law Technology Now podcast.
This week, Socha (far right) and Gelbmann (near right) have gone high tech, launching Apersee, a web-based tool designed to help firms and individuals make educated decisions about which vendors to approach. The tool works with most browsers (without any plug-ins or additional software), and is compatible with Microsoft's Internet Explorer 7+, Safari, Firefox, and Chrome (but iffy with IE6, fixes in progress).
"Apersee comes from the French word aperçu (pronounced a-pər-ˈsü), meaning an immediate understanding or insight," they explain on the product's website (www.apersee.com). "That's exactly what we want you to find here. With minimal time and effort, the Apersee Selection Engine can give you insight into the e-discovery products and providers who can address your unique needs and priorities."
The search engine "draws heavily" from both EDRM and the survey material. Users "choose the criteria that matter the most to them, assign priorities to those criteria, evaluate the results, and modify searches until a decision is made." The system is customizable and flexible, and there is no cost to consumers to use Apersee.
Vendors "can tailor their listing to fit their specific offerings and include as much or as little information as desired, including adding videos, images, links or specialty areas," says Soc-Mann. Like most directory services, basic information about a vendor is provided for free, but vendors will pay fees via "per-view" pricing for enhanced listings, Socha told LTN.
EDD in the Clouds
With the explosion of interest in cloud computing, aka software as a service (née application service providers), it's no surprise that issues are arising about the e-discovery ramifications when your data is floating up in the ether of the web.
Internet.com's CIO Update offers an interesting article, from EMC's James Shook (director of e-discovery and compliance) and marketer David Morris. They tackle several topics, including legal holds (don't expect you can dodge them just because your files aren't physically in your shop), and the "enormously complex" issue of international privacy laws.
The authors concede that conducting EDD on data within the cloud "will have its challenges. Identification and collection of large volumes of data can have intensive bandwidth, CPU, and storage requirements -- and that's assuming there are self-help tools in place to locate the data on your own." Then there's the issue of screwups by your provider, such as accidental deletions -- and who picks up the tab for fines and sanctions.
In Vino Veritas
Sometimes, it's incredibly helpful to break your routine, and share ideas with an eclectic group of people over a good meal with a few bottles of wine. David Cowen, of The Cowen Group, understands the power of this dynamic, and puts together "Cowen Signature Dinners" where he invites about 20 members of the legal technology community for a conversation. That number is perfect — too few and the discussion can be forced; too large and it can be intimidating.
Monday night, Cowen (whose shop offers head-hunting, management consulting, and industry intelligence), gathered litigation lawyers from firms (Mayer Brown, Ropes & Gray, Proskauer, and others) and corporate law departments (CA Technologies, Marsh & McLennan, Tyco International, and others), to talk about e-discovery migraines in a private room at Mahattan's Ruth's Chris Steakhouse.
Thomas Allman, former GC of BASF and an active voice in the development of e-discovery, did a fine job moderating the lively discussion, which covered everything from the realities of legal holds to the year's most debated cases about sanctions. Recommind picked up the tab, with CEO Bob Tennant, senior counsel Howard Sklar, and assistant GC Jason Robman contributing to the discussion.
Cowen describes these events as "blue-sky discussions that offer a unique venue for senior executives ... to confer over a wide range of legal, business, and technical ides that impact the market, their organizations, and their careers." His goal is "to facilitate a candid conversation about the strategic impact of technology on the legal industry." If Monday's event is typical, Cowen's team hits the mark.
P.S. The Cowen Group's fifth annual Litigation Support Salary Survey was released late Tuesday. While the economic recession kept salaries in check, the survey notes that workload has been spiking for the last five consecutive quarters. "Forward-thinking executives should be preparing for increased hiring and a corresponding rise in salaries in 2011."
Nirvana @ Georgetown
Thursday's opening sessions of the Georgetown Advanced E-Discovery Institute were pure bliss for e-discovery professionals, featuring the top judges who are shaping the development of EDD with their landmark decisions.
The opening keynote featured the Honorable James Holderman, chief judge of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois and the self-proclaimed chief cheerleader of the 7th Circuit Pilot Project, which is trying to reform EDD protocols.
It was followed by the Judge Shira Scheindlin show, the e-discovery equivalent of Katy Perry on "Saturday Night Live." The discussion, with fellow judges querying her landmark rulings, was positively electric. Scheindlin, right, is a U.S. District Court judge for the Southern District of New York.)
Tweeted one attendee, "Judges Scheindlin and Rosenthal on the same panel. Been waiting all year."
Update: Chris Bright of Zapproved posted a transcript of the Scheindlin et. al program, here on his Legal Hold Pro Tracker blog.
Anne Kershaw and Joseph Howie report that their "Judges Guide to Cost-Effective E-Discovery" is hot off the cyber-press, just in time for next week's Georgetown Advanced E-Discovery Institute. Kershaw is president of the nonprofit eDiscovery Institute, the publisher of the handbook that is available online at www.eDiscoveryInstitute.org and is being distributed in print to 500-plus U.S. magistrate judges. Howie is director of metrics development and communication.
The guide is designed to provide judges with information on cost-reduction processes, to help them make decisions when confronted with arguments from counsel. Lawyers, says Kershaw, often overstate cost or burden because they don't know about, or fail to use, proven processes that can significantly lessen the workload.
It also addresses ways to improve consistency of results, including de-duplication, e-mail threading, document categorization, predictive coding, etc.
Darwin Watch: Huron Acquires Trilantic
Huron's flagship EDD software V3locity (pronounced velocity) offers processing, hosting, document review, production, and project management tools. Trilantic's products integrate "a detailed knowledge of the European Union data protection rules," says Huron CEO James Roth.
About 15 Trilantic employees will transition to Huron, including managing director Nigel Murray, who will now serve as a Huron managing director. Terms were not disclosed.
TR Buys Serengeti Law, Launches GRC unit
More evidence that compliance is moving front-and-center in the legal technology world: Thomson Reuters
More evidence that compliance is moving front-and-center in the legal technology world: Thomson Reutershas acquired Serengeti Law, and has launched a new governance, risk, and compliance business unit.
The new GRC unit is housed within the Thomson Reuters Legal division, and led by David Craig, who assumes the title of president. (He previously served as TR's chief strategy officer.) GRC brings together several existing brands, including Complinet, Paisley, Westlaw Business, West's Capitol Watch, Oden, and Westlaw Compliance Advisor. GRC services address global regulatory and securities intelligence; business law research; contract and deal-drafting tools; internal policy management; e-learning, anti-money laundering; and audit, filing, board of director, and disclosure.
Serengeti Law's flagship software, Serengeti Tracker, provides data and analytic tools to help law departments track, control, manage, analyze, and report on worldwide legal activities. Serengeti is now aligned with TRL's corporate, government, and academic business unit, under the direction of president Mike Suchsland. Tom Melling, former vice president of product management at Serengeti, has been promoted to president. Serengeti will keep its name and brand identity now that it's under the TRL umbrella. Its 50 employees will join TR, and remain based in Seattle and Chicago. Founder Don Murray "will continue in his current sales capacity to set us up for success as we transition," says Suchsland.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed. More: EDD Update.
Darwin Watch: DTI Acquires Daticon EED
Document Technologies Inc. has acquired Daticon EED, a Seattle-area e-discovery company. The company will now be known as "EED, a DTI company," based in Atlanta.
Effective immediately, it will act as the operating unit supporting current Daticon EED clients. John Davenport Jr., currently president and CEO of DTI, will continue in that role. The terms of the deal "are not, and will not be disclosed," said publicist Amy Juers, of Edge Legal Marketing.
DTI says it now has annual revenue of more than $130 million, including $70 million-plus from discovery services. It operates six large data centers in Atlanta, Chicago, New York, Seattle, Washington, D.C., and Norwich, Conn. The former EDD Daticon offices in Kirkland, Wash. will be used as a regional technology center.
The acquisition dissolves the "Daticon" moniker, marking the end of a rather turbulent past. Founded in 1993, Daticon was previously based in Connecticut. It was bought in 2006 by Xiotech Corp., of Eden Prairie, Minn., after filing Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. (Xiotech bought only the assets, not the liabilities of the company, according to news reports.)
In 2000, a majority interest in Daticon was purchased by Daniel Gordon, who was later convicted for embezzling $43 million from Merrill Lynch, including money used to purchase the interest.
The EED in the name refers to the company previously known as Electronic Evidence Discovery Inc., founded in 1987 by John Jessen. "I am confident DTI will leverage this history to continue advancing the combined leadership position in the discovery service industry," he said today.
In Law Technology News' September cover story, "Safe Sky," Patrick Oot, general counsel of the Electronic Discovery Institute, details how corporate law departments can be at odds with the business side of their organizations over cloud computing.
As online repositories become dirt cheap, they are more tempting to companies, especially for e-mail and messaging. (Hosted Exchange e-mail services now go for about $2.50 per month per person.)
But the move to the cloud increases risks that must be managed, from privacy to security to potential waivers of attorney-client privilege. And for companies that operate overseas, the problems become even more complicated, as organizations must comply with regulations that can vary from country to country.
Oot dives into some of the risks created and argues that the 1986 Electronic Communications Privacy Act is already out-of-date and needs a revamp, quickly.
NY EDD UPDATES
The state's judiciary recently finalized alterations to §202.10(b) and §202.70(g) of the Uniform Rules of Trial Courts, which became effective on Aug. 17, after approval by Chief Judge Jonathan Lipmann and the presiding judges of four appellate division departments. The New York Law Journal offers this analysis by Joel Stashenko about how the amendments -- which state that all attorneys "must be sufficiently versed in matters relating to their clients' technology systems to discuss competently all issues relating to electronic discovery" at preliminary conferences -- will push recalcitrant lawyers to understand EDD.
And after 11 years of experimentation, New York has also begun to institute mandatory e-filing in some areas, he reports.
Are you an associate, and an up-and-coming star in the e-discovery arena? An established partner whose war stories and wisdom would be appreciated by others? A litigation support leader immersed in the day-to-day realities of EDD challenges? On the GC team, and actively involved with managing your outside counsel's EDD work? A consultant helping organizations understand and cope with exploding volumes of electronically stored information? A forensics expert who spends many days inside courtrooms and deposition rooms?
Share your experiences. We are always looking for fresh voices for our EDD Update blog -- a clearinghouse for all things e-discovery. Our diverse authors provide commentary and analysis, which complement our fast-paced posts about new products, services, people, webinars, mergers and acquisitions, and other EDD news.
If you are interested, drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org, or introduce yourself to me, or Sean Doherty, next week at ILTA.
(Vendors are strongly encouraged to dive into the conversations via comments, but are not eligible to serve as blog authors.)
I've been suggesting for a while now that compliance issues will overshadow electronic discovery, sooner rather than later. After all, both successful compliance and EDD management have at their core strong document management systems, including document retention policies.
Nixon Peabody just announced that it has expanded the role of litigation partner Jonathan Sablone, who founded the firm's e-discovery group in 2004. Sablone now also leads the firm's information law group.
Sablone succeeds Jonathan Redgrave, who has formed a self-named boutique to continue practicing in the area of information law, the firm says. The two firms will continue to collaborate and serve mutual clients, says Nixon Peabody. The firm also has a litigation technology group that provides consulting and technology services to client, including data collection, processing, forensics, and project management.
"Through Mr. Sablone's efforts, the firm has developed an integated approach that standardizes the electronic discovery process across all of the firm's offices and litigation practice groups," notes Fred Kelly, chair of NP's litigation department. "Mr. Sablone works closely with the client's in-house counsel and IT professionals, providing guidance in litigation preparedness, evidence preservation and electronic data collection, review, and production," he notes.
All these areas of expertise will become increasingly important for firms and their clients as e-discovery matures and stabilizes, and as compliance demands gather steam — especially in the wake of increased focus on regulations affecting the financial, health, insurance, and automotive industries. Don't be surprised if you see more "information law" practice areas emerging in firms over the next year.
(Link to the NP press release will be up shortly).
With an approximate revenue of $2.8 billion in 2009, e-discovery vendors are slowly but steadily moving uphill again, report Minnesota consultants George Socha and Thomas Gelbmann, in their 2010 survey of EDD trends and developments.
Unlike the logrithmic rabbit leaps of the past, current growth is more tortoise-like, at the rate of 10% to 15% per year, they note in their August LTN cover story, "Climbing Back."
And in our Law Technology Now August podcast, I interview Socha and Gelbmann about the "why" of these trends, from the perspectives of law firms, law departments, and providers.
THE BIG SQUEEZE
Small firm lawyers, with small cases and even smaller budgets, sometimes feel like the proverbial David facing Goliath. But fear not: less can definitely be more. Wisconsin lawyer and consultant Ross Kodner, CEO of MicroLaw, explains how you can go to court armed with simple but effective technology tools that help you organize and present your case -- developed from software you already own.
We also discuss the just-released 2010 LTN Vendor Satisfaction Survey, conducted by our colleagues in our ALM Intelligence division. Kodner says he's not the least bit surprised that legal professionals are increasingly frustrated with vendors, and are demanding better customer service and faster resolution of problems.
Check out "Help, Please!," our July cover story, and watch for our next LTN Video, which features Erica Greathouse, IT director of Cox, Castle & Nicholson, with some delicious tales of help desk nightmares. It will be up shortly on our LTN website.
MARK YOUR CALENDAR
During LegalTech West Coast, I taped several videos for our Law Technology News website, including discussions with our e-discovery columnist Craig Ball, consultant Tom Allman, DLA Piper's Marean Browning, and Patrick Oot, of the Electronic Discovery Institute.
They all are scheduled to participate in this fall's 7th annual Advanced E-Discovery Institute, which will be held November 18-19 at the Ritz-Carlton Pentagon City, Arlington, Va.
I'll be attending for the first time, on a panel addressing "The Business of E-Discovery." Conference topics also include an EDD case law update; proportionality; corporate counsel concerns; class actions; evidence, authenticity and admissibility; early assessment; ethics; and more.
For information about the program, visit here. Patrick Oot and I discussed the conference on his video, so I'll give you a heads up when it's scheduled to debut!
Law Technology News receives a lot of
e-mail announcements of new e-discovery products and services. Among the new releases:
Iron Mountain has debuted Stratify Legal Discovery OnPoint. The hosted system helps users load data for early filtering to help legal professionals assess the merits of their cases. It offers metadata-based faceted search, automatic concept organization, and random sampling technologies. At any stage, legal professionals can return to the full volume of restored, unfiltered data to identify additional documents to be included in the review.
CaseCentral introduced its cloud-based CaseCentral eDiscovery Platform 4.1, which includes a new folder creation assistant that automatically creates complex folder structures for large data sets. For the latest news and analysis, visit the EDD Update blog.
Assist: Dan Howley.
TWO EDD DEBUTS
* Iron Mountain has debuted Stratify Legal Discovery OnPoint. The hosted system helps users load data for early filtering to help legal professionals assess the merits of their cases. It offers metadata-based faceted search, automatic concept organization, and random sampling technologies. At any stage, legal professionals can return to the full volume of restored, unfiltered data to identify additional documents to be included in the review.
* CaseCentral introduced its cloud-based CaseCentral eDiscovery Platform 4.1, which includes a new folder creation assistant that automatically creates complex folder structures for large data sets.
For the latest news and analysis, visit the EDD Update blog.
Assist: Dan Howley.
COWEN GROUP: PM IS EXPLODING
The Cowen Group, a New York-based legal recruiter and consultancy, has announced the results of its 2009/2010 eDiscovery and Litigation Support Professionals Salary Survey. According to managing partner David Cowen, 487 professionals at 100 major firms shared their salary data with TCG for its 5th annual report. The data was gathered between November 2009 and February 2010.
As usually occurs, salaries are highest on the East Coast, lowest in the central part of the country. TCG broke the results into six different categories, with these median 2009 base salaries and projected 2010 East Coast figures:
* analyst $67,500 ($72,000)
* specialist $91,000 ($93,000)
* project manager $115,000 ($125,000)
* regional coordinator $135,000 ($145,000)
* national manager $165,000 ($205,000)
* firmwide director $267,000 ($295,000).
Biggest trend? Cowen told Law Technology News that he sees legal project management exploding for both attorneys and non-attorneys. Firms are embedding "legalists" (read: attorneys) into lit support, and everybody's comfortable with that model, he says.
Of course, you'd expect a headhunter to say people are the first priority, but Cowen says savvy firms are recognizing that successful e-discovery requires investing in "people, process, and technology" -- all three, not just one or two. He cites Morgan, Lewis & Bockius; Fulbright & Jaworski; Wilmer Hale; and Chicago boutique EimerStahl as among the industry leaders using this approach (none are his clients).
What surprised him? Despite the turbulent economy, most professionals who were pink-slipped weren't out of work for more than a few weeks, and that there was a small uptick in salaries.
And, as George Socha and Tom Gelbmann predicted in LTN last August, one of the biggest 2010 EDD challenges isn't hiring, it's retention. Firms that don't provide coaching, training, and other career growth opportunities may find key professionals walking out the door.
Cowen's bottom line is a familiar refrain to LTN readers: It's all about better, faster, cheaper; transparency; and aligning legal and business goals. "If you are going to be successful in this new, new world to have to engage in enlightened management techniques that have been long established in Fortune 500 corporations. You need to run your firm like your clients' [companies]," says Cowan.
KROLL ACQUIRED BY ALTEGRITY
Altegrity today announced plans to acquire Kroll from Marsh & McLennan Companies, in an all-cash transaction valued at $1.13 billion the companies announced. Kroll offers a range of security and technology services, including investigations, financial advice and intelligence, and more.
Altegrity is owned by Providence Equity Partners, a global private equity firm. The transaction is expected to close by September, assuming the usual approvals. Altegrity's CEO Mike Cherkasky served as president/CEO of Kroll from 2001-2004. MMC turned to Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz for legal counsel; Debevoise & Plimpton aided Altegrity and Providence.
Among Kroll's entities is Kroll Ontrack, which offers a range of services, software, and consulting to help legal, corporate, and governmental entities (and consumers) deal with data, including data recovery services. Kroll Ontrack has a high profile in the e-discovery community; it ranked as a top 5 overall services provider in the final Socha/Gelbmann e-discovery survey in 2008. In the same survey, it ranked in the 11-15 category for its software.
On EDD Update, Craig Ball, Law Technology News' e-discovery columnist, notes that MMC bought Kroll in the summer of 2004 for $1.9 billion. "Wonder if some of Kroll's investigative skills will be tasked to find out what happened to that $770 million in value lost to shell-shocked shareholders like me?" But, says Ball, "It's likely a good move for Kroll -- always a poor fit at Marsh and a minor contributor to revenues -- and a homecoming of sorts [for] Cherkasky."
"The new owners are probably a better conduit for the government investigation work that's an important part of Kroll's book of businesses," says Ball. But he caveats that it "will be interesting to see what conflicts emerge between Kroll's (and Ontrack's) Wall Street and AmLaw 100 work, and the work for Uncle Sam."
"Altegrity's acquisition of Kroll is one more example of the continuing mergers, acquisitions, and partnerships [within e-discovery]," say George Socha and Thomas Gelbmann. "Kroll Ontrack is certainly one of the largest and most well established providers of EDD services and software, so this sale is something we will be following with interest.The impact of this acquisition on Ontrack's direction will be interesting to track but could take a year or more to manifest itself."
Calls to our usual sources at Minn.-based Kroll Ontrack were deferred to Kroll's new headquarters. Kroll CEO Ben Allen told LTN that the sale definitely helps Kroll, and especially Kroll Ontrack, because (as Ball suggests) it will be a much bigger fish in the pond. As part of MMC, "Kroll was about 10%," but as part of Altegrity, it will be about "40% to 45%" of the company. Allen rebuffed any concerns about conflicts, saying the companies already had processes and procedures in place that work well.
As for the difference between the 2004 and 2009 sales prices, Allen deferred to MMC for comment. But he noted that Kroll had already sold off three significant entities, a drug screening business, a government services business, and a corporate advisory and restructuring group, since 2008.
Press Release here.
All lawyers must be able to fashion a successful legal hold, argues Craig Ball in his May "Ball in Your Court" column in Law Technology News. U.S. District Court Judge Shira Scheindlin's recent "terrifying 88-page opinion" in Pension Committee gives no quarter, he says.
"The failure to issue a written litigation hold constitutes gross negligence because that failure is likely to result in the destruction of relevant information," she writes. So what's a lawyer to do? Ball comes to the rescue with tips on creating a workable legal hold.
And there's more news: Ralph Losey, on EDD Update, notes that Scheindlin added another correction to her opinion on May 28. The fix will help folks breath a little easier, he says, as she changes language from "likely constitutes negligence" to "could" -- and "all employees" is modified to "those with any involvement."
Speaking of legal holds, in "Gone, Not Forgotten" Jones Day's Marc Fulkert reminds us that exiting employees may leave behind a trail of electronic data. He offers suggestions for policies that will protect organizations, including prohibiting personnel from using personal computers or e-mail when working -- and to be sure that those folks don't walk away with company computers!
HERE COMES TROUBLE
Three days of briefings with Twin Cities legal technology teams have increased my perception that compliance is looming large over our industry. I suspect, once it settles in, that it will make e-discovery look easy.
Tuesday's lead story on the Star Tribune's business page was how Piper Jaffray & Co., a 115-year old Minneapolis-based investment bank, had just agreed to cough up a $700K fine for failing to retain e-mails required by securities laws and regulations; and for failing to inform regulators that they had discovered the problem while investigating an ex-employee, reports Dan Browning.
"You might think [the bank] would have known better," writes Browning. It already paid a $1.65 million fine in 2002 for failing to preserve e-mails.
The story prompted Minnesota consultant George Socha to check in to remind us about The Information Management Reference Model that is under development from his EDRM gang. Its mission: "to provide a common, practical, flexible framework to help organizations develop and implement effective and actionable information management programs,"
On a much lighter note, the same issue of the Strib featured a hilarious review by Jon Bream, a frequent contributor to Law Technology News, of the band Nickelback, which he says is veering very close to Spinal Tap. Bream says frontman Chad Kroeger "dropped enough F-bombs to upset your grandmother, made enough pot references to give you the munchies, and babbled on longer than the president's State of the Union."
NOT ALL BAD NEWS
Lately, there's been a lot of buzz and angst about the departures of senior folks in important firms and organizations, particularly among IT and e-discovery. But industry analysts suggest that the future may actually be bright for our legal technology community.
The Cowen Group recently predicted that 215 new e-discovery jobs will be created over the next six months, including project managers, regional managers, and EDD attorneys. Billable hours are up at 35% of corporations, 61% of law firms, and 51% of vendors, says TCG in its "Q1 Critical Trends report" -- and 35% of corporations, 60% of law firms, and 65% of vendors plan to add staff in the next three months. TCG received responses from 78 law firms, 47 corporations, and 35 vendors.
The company does recruiting, events, and business intelligence. It is currently highlighting "hot job" positions for a Los Angeles-based EDD coordinator ($155K), a Northeast region in-house EDD manager ($150K- $175K), and a national litigation practice support manager ($225K-$250K).
Michael Potters, CEO and managing director of New Jersey's The Glenmont Group, says jobs for IT and EDD staff are exploding "through the roof," all across the country.
Reasons: 1) bounce back from arbitrary cuts made in the throes of the recession panic, where firms were matching "ratios" of attorneys to support staff; 2) a forecasted explosion in litigation, caused by a) the Wall Street meltdown, b) compliance issues (financial and health), and c) the recent Toyota and BP nightmares.
I still think we are going to see some interesting shifts, however, as firms rethink and reconstruct their IT and EDD models. Keep an eye out as some firms adopt more "repeatable processes" mind-sets, while others look toward creating IT portfolios that are aligned directly with business goals (check out Doug Caddell and Jo Haraf).
THE REIGN OF SOX
A carefully crafted document management system can help your firm not only meet its business goals, but also comply with the requirements of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.
In our April Law Technology News cover story, Kenneth Jones, COO of Sedgwick's Xerdict Group, provides a basic framework to implement a system that will help your firm accurately track claims, assess associated risk factors, and project resolution costs. This requires transaction-level and entity-level controls, says Jones.
WOMEN IN E-DISCOVERY: N.J. MTG POSTPONED
I'm so disappointed as I was looking forward to the event (I was scheduled to speak on social networking). But I'm also relieved because I've got the flu/cold bug that's traversing the area faster than the downhill skiers in Vancouver.
The fabulous Babs Deacon will speak at the March meeting, on data analytics. I'll be speaking in June. Hopefully, it won't be snowing in June.
JUST EQUAL #2
Huge thanks to Craig Ball -- and to the Women in E-Discovery's NYC Chapter -- for a wonderful lunch at the organization's January meeting -- where Craig and I spoke about how women can use e-discovery training to end run the "glass ceiling."
I'm in the process of writing about the event for the next issue of LTN -- and because we have recently merged the LTN and Law.com technology website, we have not yet completed building the archives, so I don't have public access yet to many LTN stories.
Therefore, if you will induldge me, I'm going to reprint my Nov. 2008 "Just Equal" column here, so I can link to it in LTN and folks will be able to access it. I'm also putting an excerpt of my October 2008 Editor's Note where I challenged every law firm managing partner, every GC, and every vendor CEO to fix gender pay inequities. It's easy. Just get a salary report from HR, identify what needs to be changed, and in the words of Nike, "Just Do it!"
I'll put these "behind the curtain," so just click below to "keep reading" to find it.
Editor's Note October 2008Many of us were appalled to learn that after all these years, we still have an embarrassing gender gap: women in our legal industry last year earned only 51% of the money that went to men in equal jobs. U.S. Census figures, released in August, reveal that women earned about $53,800, compared to male peers' $105,200, reports The National Law Journal's Vesna Jaksic.
Ironically, our tech community scored better, but still inexcusably different, with women paralegals and litigation support staff getting 93.2% of what men get paid for the same work. When you consider that women dominate trial support staff work, it's even more chilling.
This is unacceptable. I challenge every GC, law firm managing partner, and legal vendor CEO to check their own employee records and remedy this today. (Check out the fiery debate on The Common Scold — http://tinyurl.com/ltnpay.)
Just Equal, November 2008
by Monica Bay
Recently, Chere Estrin (who is launching a magazine for women in litigation, with the sassy name, Sue) and I were cyberchatting about the thorny challenges that face women, minorities, gays and lesbians in the legal profession.
Recent reports in The National Law Journal (http://tinyurl.com/NLJdiversity) have been disheartening, documenting pay discrepancies, and little improvement in ladder climbing at BigLaw, especially for minority attorneys. Even more distressing — the toooften- vitriolic comments on Above the Law (www.abovethelaw.com) and other blogs.
Estrin happened to notice that our September LTN was estrogen-free, and asked me about why there were no women's bylines.
"What do you think accounts for the lack of women writers, technology pros and other positions in legal technology?" she queried.
I was surprised, and grabbed a handful of issues to check my own stats. As editor of LTN for a decade, I have always had a fierce commitment to embrace diversity in all aspects of our operation. I also blog about this topic constantly on The Common Scold (www.thecommonscold.com) and EDD Update (www.eddupdate.com). My passion is shared by our leadership, one of the many reasons why I've stayed here for 23 years. Here's what I found:
• Ten members of our 38-member editorial advisory board are women. I rotate about 20% of members off every year to make room for new talent. But I have not had success attracting minority members, only one in the last few years. (Interested candidates, e-mail me!)
• Women are regularly featured as our "Up Close" profile, so far this year, in five issues.
• May's President's Corner was a female.
• In the last four issues, 10 women had bylines. Donna Payne writes her wonderful Test Drive column, featured in most issues.
• Over the decade, our unit has hired and trained many talented journalists, in cluding many women and several minorities.
Indeed, the foundation of LTN has been our keen belief that our profession is changing from being run like private clubs — to a corporate model that values diversity and empowers everyone to do their best possible work. It's only good business to do so.
This is a core LTN campaign that I am proud to champion.
But it's obvious that our legal profession has a long road to go, and that there are no easy answers. Lisa Belkin, in her final Life's Work column (http://tinyurl.com/LTNBelkin) in The New York Times summed it up when she said that after a decade, she's left with more questions than answers.
There are so many nuanced factors that sabotage glib road maps: everything from balancing family and work; negotiating salaries; teamwork; effective self-promotion; leadership; and even ridiculous stereotypes (e.g., crying ruins a woman's career). And a whole lot of folks, myself included, have absolutely no interest in the lifestyle and sacrifices required to become and stay a BigFirm partner.
But there is no question — racism and sexism remain deeply embedded in our profession. That simply must change. We must continue the dialogue, no matter how difficult. We must strongly support and mentor the women, minorities, gays and lesbians who are climbing the ranks of our profession.
Fortunately, there are good men and women genuinely trying to fix this. We simply cannot give up. We must use everything in our power to make it right, and just.
DOCS v. LAWYERS RE: E-RECORDS
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 allocated $19 billion to help doctors and other health care providers buy and install electronic health record systems, with the agenda of creating an integrated national Health Information Network to improve health care and reduce costs.
Robert Hudock and Jason Christ, both senior associates at Epstein Becker & Green, take a look at how the health care system compares to the legal industries adoption of e-discovery collection and production practices, in "Electronic Discovery: A Special Report," in The National Law Journal (registration required).
Terminating legal holds is easier said than done, says John Jablonski. But it's also "an essential part of a defensible legal hold business process."
In "End Game," Jablonski, a partner with Goldberg Segalla, and co-author of ARMA's new book, 7 Steps for Legal Holds of ESI and Other Documents, says that "timely release of legal holds can help corporations escape from the legal hold purgatory."
To find out more, check out the January e-discovery showcase in Law Technology News.
BACK TO THE FUTURE
It's been three years now since the electronic data discovery rules were added to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, and the number of reported cases involving electronically stored information has skyrocketed. But some lawyers still "simply do not anticipate (or woefully underestimate) issues related to ESI," says Cecil Lynn, of counsel to Ryley Carlock and Applewhite.
In "Back to the Future" in the January issue of Law Technology News, Lynn chronicles key 2009 rulings, finding that most of them are reiterating established principles. Lynn looks at everything from the increasing clarion for "cooperation," and issues around form of production, to failure to preserve, sanctions, discovery abuse, and more. It's part of our EDD Showcase.
Want more? Check out our Law Technology Now podcast, where Cecil Lynn joins me as a guest to further explore the 2009 EDD rulings -- with a special bonus: a cameo appearance by ALM's Henry Dicker, who offers a sneak preview of LegalTech New York.
E-DISCOVERY BILL OF RIGHTS
In January's Ball in Your Court column, Craig Ball argues that it's time for a "Bill of Rights" for requesting parties who seek electronically stored information from their opponents. Requesting parties, he insists, have rights -- and duties -- during litigation.
Among the rights, says Ball, an Austin, Texas-based attorney and forensics consultant, is that ESI be produced in the format in which it is kept in the usual course of business; and that the producer clearly and specifically identify any intentional alteration of ESI.
Among the duties: an obligation to anticipate the nature, form, and volume of the ESI under scrutiny, and tailor requests to minimize burden and cost of securing the data. Read more in the current issue of Law Technology News.
Craig and I will be speaking Thursday (Jan. 21) at the New York City chapter meeting of Women in E-Discovery. It will be held at noon, at Credit Suisse, 11 Madison Ave., floor 2B, in the Club room.
To RSVP please visit email@example.com. We hope to see you there!
One of the most crucial, and sometimes frustrating, aspects of reviewing electronically stored information is trying to follow e-mail "threads" — the conversations created by replies (to all), forwarding, etc. Finding all related e-mails can be a challenge, but technology can help.
In "Exposing Content," Anne Kershaw and Joseph Howie explain how "e-threading" can help you contain e-discovery costs, explicating the three general ways that e-mails are associated into threads. They also offer a chart of vendors who provide technology tools to help you create the fabric of these conversations.
It's in the EDD Showcase, in the January edition of Law Technology News.
DECEMBER PRESIDENT'S CORNER
Catalyst Repository Systems has introduced its Fast Track integrated processing software. Users can submit multi-language Exchange PST, NSF, and other electronic files directly into Catalyst CR, the company's web-based search and review software, says CEO John Tredennick.
The automated system processes, loads, and indexes files and then makes them available for search and review according to processing instructions set by the user, he explains.
Among other new litigation support products announced in Law Technology News' December issue is Wave Software's Trident Pro 6.2, which adds interactive searching and filtering capabilities to help users view search results quickly, and make earlier decisions on search terms and criteria by providing a report on keyword lists.
The software automatically detects exceptions and encrypted items and generates reports and logs. Its Native Review Bridge adds support for LexisNexis Concordance 10. Other improvements include enhanced Unicode support for better handling of Chinese, Japanese, and Korean data.
COLORADO EDD SUMMIT
Jeffrey Staal, litigation support manager of Denver's Davis Graham & Stubbs, checks in to let you know that the Colorado Association of Litigation Support Professionals will host its third annual E-Discovery Summit on October 30 at the Grand Hyatt Denver.
The event will feature Magistrate Judge Andrew Peck, (right) who is featured in Law Technology News' October "Up Close" will address the creation of a search protocol.
Other speakers include Beth Niepokuj of Plunkett Cooney, Marcy Heronimus of Sherman & Howard, David Garrett of Stroz Friedberg, Elleanor Chin of Davis, Wright & Tremaine, and Timothy Gordon of Holland & Hart. A cocktail reception ends the day. For more information, contact Staal.
Magistrate Judge Andrew Peck, who serves on the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, has been quite active in drafting e-discovery rulings, such as March's William A. Gross Construction Associates, Inc. v. American Manufacturers Mutual Insurance Co. and Anti-Monopoly, Inc. v. Hasbro, Inc. -- both establishing important guidance for the creation keywords for searching electronically stored information. (See here, here, and here.)
But did you know that Peck also has written a reference book on all things Sherlock Holmes? Or that he drives to work (unusual for a Manhattanite). And you probably won't be surprised to see that he and I share the same favorite website. After all, he lives in New York City!
STRANGE TIMES ELABORATED
Can't get enough of the Socha/Gelbmann e-discovery survey report? (August Law Technology News' cover story?)
Well, you have two different opportunities to hear more about it! We have produced both a podcast and a full webinar, both featuring George Socha and Tom Gelbmann discussing the always-anticipated report -- which found some seemingly contradictory trends -- including the simultaneous constriction and expansion of e-discovery services, and a continuing shortfall in qualified support staff.
You can listen to the free webinar, produced by Law.com, and proudly sponsored by Fios and Daticon EED.
SHOULD EDD PROFESSIONALS BE CERTIFIED?
Chere Estrin starts the debate over at EDD Update -- see why she and others have formed the Organization for Legal Professionals, and dive into the discussion and let us know whether you think e-discovery certification would help -- or hinder -- employees and employers.
7th ANNUAL TWINS/YANKS FEST
Bye Bye Dome.... The 7th annual Twins/Yanks fest was, as always, Big Fun -- a chance to connect with the terrific Twins Cities tech community and say goodbye to the Metrodome... (well, unless we meet again in October!)
As always, it was a jam-packed three days of vendor meetings and beisbol! We started off the trip with our annual visit to Thomson Reuters, with huge thanks to John Shaughnessy (far left), Gretchen DeSutter (below) and Scott Augustin (left) for setting up a day of helpful briefings. We had a chance to say a quick hello to Allison Guidette, who has returned to Eagan as vp of litigation (she was headed to the airport for a trip west); then visited with Preston McKenzie, vp of Hubbard One (which includes ContactNet, Hubbard One and Monitor Suite). Then we got a fascinating update from Rob Sargeson, senior vp & CIO, about the company's expansion plans for its massive data centers.
Over a yummy evil midwest lunch, (TR's commissary is just too tempting!) Mike Abbott and Stephanie Krause updated us on pro bono projects designed to help displaced legal professionals. It's always great to see vp Laurie Zenner and the corporate communications team, which also includes Kevin Hunt and Michele Endgahl in addition to the aforementioned folks.
Then Denis Hauptly (vp strategic development), who has just returned from a long stint in Switzerland, offered his mighty wisdom about uber search and other trends on the horizon. Here's a link to his new book, Something Really New, which I will be reading shortly!
Next on the agenda was a briefing on the Westlaw Business' global outreach, with marketing vp Gus Thompson) and sr. director Rob Kirchstein (with Gretchen, above). The day wrapped up with sr. director Brian Knudsen mktg mgr John Vonhor offering me a tour of the company's PeopleMap public information software that helps everybody from litigators to skip tracers track down 411 on folks.
Before I headed to the Dome with Teri "Jersey Girl" McCarron and Teddy Lindgren for game 1 of the Twins/Yanks series, Incisive's Michael Medwig and Marnie Maroney (below left in white shirt, with Paul Godlewski from Thomson Reuters) and I visited 3M -- with mktg communications mgr Joan Olseen and Erik Johnson for an update on the company's popular RFID system that helps law firms and companies track their paper files.(BTW, apparently Teri is not the only "JG" in Mpls -- check out the license plate I saw at Thomson Reuter parking lot!)
Day 2 began with an update from NightOwl, which offers document management services. Scott Sterkel, director of sales and mktg, told us how the company is growing with its e-discovery offerings.
Then it was off to Eden Praire to meet up with the Kroll Ontrack gang, including Christian Betancourt and Megan Kubacki, (left). Kaitlin Shinkle regaled us with reports on her June wedding at the St. Paul hotel (Congrats! plus a shout out to Michelle Lange, who is on maternity leave!)
Finally, we had a very interesting meeting with Avantstar's Matt Knudson about the company's content management system, and how they are getting increasing traction within the e-discovery community.
Then it was to the Dome for the Twins/Yanks fest. Thanks to everybody who joined us, including LTN edit board members George Socha and Tom Gelbmann (right); consultants LaVerne Pritchard and Linda Ulbrich. As usual, the gangs from Thomson Reuters and Kroll.
The Dorsey & Whitney crew included partner Melissa Krasnow, left in red -- who with colleague Nick Ackerman, was the star of our May Law Technology Now podcast. Next to Krasnow is her friend, General Mills counsel Cam Hoang. Also from Dorsey was Patrick Courtemanche (in light blue shirt) who has joined the firm's marketing department, with Dorsey marketing colleague Bob Kleiber (in royal blue shirt).
We were also thrilled that LTN's former associate editor Katie Montgomery could come north from Iowa to be with us! Incisive's Rob Hafiz of LegalTech also joined in the fun, as did Curt Meltzer of Meltzer Consulting, and Sean Solberg, of Faegre & Benson (far right).
BTW, we send our best wishes to Linda Will, who's on the DL, for a speedy recovery, and a shout-out to Amy Juers, who missed her first Twins/Fest because she was in California (good excuse!).
Huge thanks to Luis Breazeale of the Twins for all his help getting us such great seats (behind home plate!) It was a great, tight game, a nailbiter all the way to the end, when Mariano faced Mauer, and for only the third time in our seven year Twins/Yanks fest history, the Yanks actually won. (Sorry, Minnesota fans :) On top of the good game, one of our rows was selected as the Hormel Hot Dog Row of the Game -- so everybody in the middle of our group got a free hot dog! What a hoot!!
Day 3 started with a few "issues" with my Garmin Nuvi 200 -- actually, it wasn't the tech's fault, it was my fault for not updating the maps. The Twins City is undergoing a massive amount of construction (Three people told me the same joke: "Minnesota has two seasons: winter and road construction") and the whole area is completely chewed up (especially downtown) rivaling Boston's Big Dig. Trying to get to Roseville to meet up with the Merrill gang, I could not find an open on-ramp to 35W North -- and ended up almost at Bloomington trying to get north. I am soooo updating my maps before my next adventure!
But because I'm paranoid and always leave extra time to find new places, even with Garmin's 90% reliable "Jill," I pulled into the parking lot just at the meeting time. Thanks to Leonard Lee and the Merrill team for a terrific conversation about social networking, e-discovery and all the challenges they present. We enjoyed meeting with marketers Scott Snyder, Diana Lepper, and Dawn Edwards!
Finally, before heading back home, I had a chance to visit with Jon Bream, my colleague from my days at the Minnesota Daily, who is the veteran music critic at the Star Tribune. (His latest "coffee table" book is Whole Lotta Led Zeppelin). We headed to Wasabi, which I highly recommend as a terrific Japanese restaurant right about halfway between the Guthrie theater and the Dome.
We noticed a lovely new restaurant in the same complex, Sanctuary, and took the opportunity to get a quick tour from Michael Kutscheid, owner and GM. The charming bistro also has a sweet outdoor garden -- and I definitely plan to visit it on my next trip to Minnesota, hopefully in October!
And if not for post-season, we'll look forward to returning next year for OUTDOOR baseball at the new Target Field (we'll bring our down coats).
More photos here.
PECK & WAXSE HOLD COURT AT ROUND TABLE
Fascinating dinner last night with the Fios (see below) gang, to kick off LegalTech West Coast. Mary Mack and Debbie Caldwell were among the orchestrators of the evening, which featured two prominent U.S. Magistrate Judges who you have been reading a lot about (in Craig Ball's EDD column): Andrew Peck, (far left) of the Southern District of NY, and David Waxse (left) , of the District of Kansas. It was a sneak preview, of sorts, of tomorrow's keynote address at LegalTech West Coast.
Mary Mack moderated the eat-and-talk roundtable discussion, which drew about 25 lawyers and one summer associate for an off-the-record discussion of recent discovery trends. Peck recently caused a lot of heat with his Gross case ruling, a "wake up call to the bar" chastising attorneys about sloppy searches and failure to truly cooperate with opposing counsel (See Ball's June column), Waxse authored the key Williams v. Spring/United Management Co. case in 2006.(See ABA Journal's "These Cases Rock").
The two men interact well together and quickly drew the audience into the discussion, which covered a lot of territory running from ethics to how EDD requests are sometimes used to bully the other side into submission because the sheer cost of production.
Both judges -- along with Tom Allman and moderator Carole Basri -- will be presenting the Thursday keynote (immediately following our "Green Your Career" networking breakfast for jobseekers) at LegalTech West Coast, at the LA Convention Center. Don't miss it. These two judges are entertaining, and substantive, and it's bound to be a great panel. For information, visit www.legaltechshow.com -- or just come on' over to the LA Convention Center!
MANAGEMENT SHIFT AT FIOS
Apparently, there's been a big shift in the exec offices at Fios. I'll find out more details tomorrow when I meet with their team, but John Hesse (right) is now listed on their website as the "interim CEO" replacing Gerald Massey.
LTN board member Tom O'Connor (director of the Gulf Coast Legal Tech Center) tipped us that last Friday Prashant Dubey (SVP Consulting), Sam Panarella (VP Consulting) and Jeanette Siepian (SVP Sales & Marketing) were all let go. Dubey and Panarell's LinkedIn pages show the departures, Siepian's still states Fios employment.Massey's says he's still on the board of directors, but no longer lists CEO title.
Fios' Debbie Caldwell just confirmed the departures:
"Gerald is no longer CEO, he left in May. He initiated the change as part of a succession plan, with discussions beginning last fall. Gerald maintained, and still does, full confidence by the board. He continues to be involved with Fios, both as a member of the board of directors and a shareholder. John Hesse, the company’s CFO, is the interim CEO
Additional changes: Fios has made organizational changes within the company to better align our resources to take advantage of the rapidly changing e-discovery market. To better address market needs, Fios has combined its sales and professional services divisions and is also expanding its product teams."