Waltzing off to Australia

July 30, 2008

I have for some time been mentioning Australia as the jurisdiction to watch for developments in court rules and procedures relating to case management and, in particular, the handling of electronic documents.

They warrant a closer look on my part, not least because I have been invited to speak at Ark Group’s Corporate eDiscovery Conference Preparing your organisation for eDiscovery in Sydney on 13-15 October 2008. My main subject will be Responsibility for eDiscovery, which allows me to bring together sources as diverse as the UK Commercial Court Recommendations, the US Qualcomm sanctions case, the recent US cases (O’Keefe and Victor Stanley) on the use of search technology, and the express requirement in Australia to the effect that lawyers who appear before the courts ought to know something about relevant technology or get suitable help when they do not. Read the rest of this entry »

Aikens and Jackson go to the Court of Appeal

July 30, 2008

Two of the new appointments to the Court of Appeal attract my attention for different reasons. Sir Richard Aikens was one of those responsible for the Commercial Court Recommendations, and I used to instruct Sir Rupert Jackson when he was a junior barrister.

Mr Justice Aikens becomes a Lord Justice of Appeal on 19 November. He was Judge in charge of the Commercial Court from 2005-2006 and was chairman of the Aikens Committee which produced the Commercial Court Long Trials Recommendations now undergoing a trial period in that Court. His elevation means that he will not be there when the testing period comes to an end on 30 November. Read the rest of this entry »

Trilantic welcomed as Project sponsors

July 28, 2008

A warm welcome to Trilantic as the latest addition to the sponsors of the e-Disclosure Information Project. Trilantic is a legal support company focused on electronic Disclosure services, delivering a wide range of solutions to lawyers and others.

The purpose of the Project is to bring together all those with an interest in electronic disclosure, whether lawyers, judges, suppliers or the corporations whose electronic data is what it is all about. Nigel Murray is better known than most of those on the supplier side, and has done much to promote the industry.

Nigel and I started in this business at about the same time – my dedication to electronic filing allows me to date our first meeting to 15 December 1993. My welcome to Trilantic is therefore a personal one as well as being on behalf of the Project.

More will follow in due course.


OutIndex supports child healthcare

July 28, 2008

Law firms have long been involved in pro bono work, applying their skills and their resources towards helping those who are not fortunate enough to be able to afford their services. I have not hitherto come across the same idea in litigation support companies, which is not to say it does not happen.

Although I receive press releases and other formal and informal sources of information, quite a lot of what I know is stumbled upon while looking for something else. During a random wander round the invaluable EDD Update, I came across the familiar name of OutIndex and a link to their announcement of a corporate programme focused on childrens’ healthcare. Read the rest of this entry »

Meeting people is right

July 28, 2008

Before you entrust your clients’ disclosure documents to a litigation support provider, it is worth getting to know a few, and that means real human contact, not just reading up about them. Meetings do not have to involve sitting round a table in an office.

The week in which the EU has purported to abolish the acre is a good time to mention the 450 acre field in which I hold meetings when people come and see me. It is called Port Meadow and lies a couple of minutes from my front door. The most recent such visitor, last week, was Andrew Sieja, CEO of KCura, whose Relativity document review application is making its mark.

More on Relativity in a moment. What is the value to me of meeting CEOs of litigation support providers and software companies? Why do they want to meet me? What is the best context for these getting-to-know-you conversations? And why does it matter in a business which, stripped of its fripperies, comes down to applying some technology to a pile of data so that lawyers can fight about it? Read the rest of this entry »

Autonomy hosts Legal Forum in Washington

July 19, 2008

I am just back from a Legal Forum hosted by Autonomy in Washington DC. Autonomy specialise in enterprise search and Meaning Based Computing. Their acquisition of ZANTAZ 12 months ago brought them into the e-mail archiving arena and expanded their e-discovery offerings, not least with their hosted review application Introspect.

I have not yet had the opportunity to welcome Autonomy ZANTAZ formally as sponsors of the e-Disclosure Information Project but am obviously very pleased to do so. The invitation to the Washington Legal Forum in fact preceded the sponsorship. Read the rest of this entry »

Catching up will have to wait

July 15, 2008

I had hoped by now to have written up the talks which HHJ Simon Brown QC and I gave to two groups of judges in the last two weeks, but time is against me and a short summary will have to do for now.

The audiences were first the Designated Civil Judges and then the Specialist Judges. The e-Disclosure Information Project, of which this site is the most obvious tangible output, began as an exercise in helping judges at the junction of two technical subjects – the CPR and technology. The first of these has been unchanged since 2005, but remains shrouded in a mystery which it does not deserve. The second changes all the time. My role is to try and unshroud the rules and to help introduce the technology to those who need it or who need to know about it if proportionate orders are to be made about disclosure. Read the rest of this entry »

Affordable electronic disclosure pricing

July 11, 2008

I wrote last week applauding an e-disclosure services company which had launched an electronic disclosure service at a relatively low fixed price per Gb (see e-Disclosure pricing not just for large matters). It appeared that they had told everyone but me about it, which seemed a bit odd given that I am known to be keen to promote the fact that electronic handing of electronic data is not as expensive as it is assumed to be.

I wrote a story about it anyway, if a post without any actual facts in it can be called a story, and it got nearly 50 hits in a couple of days (that, I should tell you, is not at all bad for what remains a niche interest). One of those was obviously the company concerned, who wrote at once to say that the mailing list had gone awry for all the press contacts and that it was not just me who had been left in the dark. Read the rest of this entry »

eDisclosure Pricing – not just for large matters

July 7, 2008

This site aims both to influence the way in which e-disclosure services and solutions are provided and to report on developments. One of my reiterated observations is that suppliers of e-disclosure services find it difficult to get across the fact that many of them offer services such as electronic handling of e-mail, de-duplication and hosting at charges which are cost-effective even for relatively small cases – see my recent article If I had known the cost was hundreds not thousands….

We pride ourselves here on being up with the news, and being the place where hard news and gossip is traded first, so I was very pleased to be told, from two sources before lunch-time, that one such supplier has launched an initiative to convey just this, with a pricing policy described as “aggressive”. Indeed, I heard about it within 15 minutes of the mailshot going out. But not, as it happens, from the supplier itself. Read the rest of this entry »

A US view on UK electronic disclosure

July 7, 2008

Although the conferences referred to here were both in London, they were not specifically about electronic disclosure in the UK. There was plenty, though, to interest those on both sides of the Atlantic, not least the possibility that part of our approach might be exportable

Jason Baron, the US National Archives’ Director of Litigation and a well-known commentator on all things to do with electronic disclosure / discovery, has beaten me to a full commentary on two of the conferences which I attended recently. Since he has done it so well, and since I am still out of my office speaking more than I am in my office writing, I will gratefully point you to his excellent article A Tale of Two London ESI Forums on Ralph Losey’s e-Discovery Team site.

I have mentioned both conferences (see e-Disclosure conferences give plenty to think about) and will say more about aspects of them over the Summer. They were the DESI II Workshop and the International Conference on Digital Evidence. The key points from Jason Baron’s article insofar as my catchment area is concerned are as follows: Read the rest of this entry »


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