Legal Technology News - E-Discovery and Compliance Blog

From the Editors Feed

January 18, 2012

2011 LTN Innovation Awards

Ltn_awards_2011The winners of Law Technology News' 2001 Innovation Awards will be honored at a ceremony at LegalTech New York, at the conclusion of the opening day keynote address at approximately 10 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 30.

You are cordially invited to attend the awards presentation (and keynote, and exhibit halls). To get a free pass, just visit the LTNY registration site here, but don't dally — you must sign up prior to the show (on-site registration runs $50 for that access). 

Come help us applaud this year's winners:

Champion of Technology: U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge Andrew Peck

IT Director of the Year: Craig Bingham, of Bass, Berry & Sims.

Most Innovative Use of Technology in:

• A Large Firm: Mallesons Stephen Jaques.

A Small Firm: Ward and Smith.

Corporate Law Dep't: John Deere.

Pro Bono: Minnesota Legal Services Coalition.

Read more about the winners here!


December 23, 2011

Happy Holidays

IvyAs the holidays approach, I wish you joys small and large, noise soft and loud, lights bright and quiet; enough silence; an abundance of kindness and as little anger as possible; music always; and at least one heaping spoonful of peppermint ice cream.

P.S. Here is my favorite holiday card of 2011. I'm just evil. :) 


November 24, 2011

Thanks Giving

TurkeyFor so many in our legal technology community, this has been a challenging year, full of bumps and bruises. It's easy to get discouraged, and sometimes difficult to focus on the positive option in my favorite Chinese proverb: "Crisis is danger — and opportunity."

May this day bring you peace, inspiration, and hope. For those who will spend today with family, speak softly; for those who cannot, be kind to yourself today. Real life does not always play out like a Hallmark card, but there is so very, very much good in this world.

Among my many blessings is the opportunity to work with you — so my "thanks giving" today includes both the contributors here on EDD Update for their excellent and enthusiastic posts, and our readers for your passion and suggestions. It is a true joy to serve you.




August 09, 2011

Legal Intelligencer Series on EDD

Whale Our colleague Gina Passarella at The Legal Intelligencer in Pennsylvania has launched a weekly series "examining the effects e-discovery has had on the practice of law." 

The first article sets the stages, as Passarella discusses the tension between "ever-expanding forms of data" and the ever-changing technology and knowledge to manage that data.

"Attorneys have said e-discovery can eat up between 50 to 80 percent of a litigation budget. Even on the low end, that verges on the minnow that ate the whale."

You can check out the first installment here (registration may be required). 


June 15, 2011

Coping with NLRB Rulings on FB Speech

From today's LTN Alert:

Lock_cutter128 • "Losing Face in Facebook, One Security Setting at a Time," by Brendan McKenna.

• "SEC Adds Nexidia Audio Search, Still Evaluating Text Search,"  by Evan Koblentz.

• Pittsburg attorney Jeffrey Gordon discusses how companies can deal with recent National Labor Relations Board rulings on employees' posts on Facebook. (Legal Intelligencer.)

• "How to Handle a Software Audit," by attorneys Paul Beik and Jonathan Day, from Texas Lawyer


May 31, 2011

Reasons Emerge for E&Y's Cataphora Acquisition

Darwin Accounting giant Ernst & Young has announced its acquisition of the electronic discovery division of Cataphora for an undisclosed amount. The deal better equips E&Y to market to the legal field, differentiate itself from its competition, and upsell additional services, the consulting company said in the release.

Industry observers were quick to assess the move:

"If the threat of Dodd-Frank's impact on international business comes to pass (for example), it could be boom times ahead for the Big Four accounting firms in responding to global regulatory investigations from whistle-blowers," said Katey Wood, an e-discovery analyst for Enterprise Strategy Group, in an interview by e-mail today. The consultancy is based in Milford, Mass.

"What you have here is a services-based organization buying what is primarily a software shop," observed George Socha, of Minnesota's Socha Consulting (and a member of Law Technology News' Editorial Advisory Board. "It probably means that if you want to use Cataphora's software, you are going to be buying Ernst & Young's services as well. Depending on your perspective that could be a good thing or a bad thing,"  Socha added. (Consultants Socha and Tom Gelbmann offer Apersee software that helps users evaluate EDD vendors.)

The deal closed on May 27 and represents the third significant e-discovery deal in three weeks, said E&Y. Autonomy acquired Iron Mountain's digital division on May 16 and Symantec bought Clearwell Systems on May 19.

E&Y told us they'll have much more to say Wednesday (6/1) morning, so be sure to check back on our main site at and here!

Update 6/1: Full story is available here.


April 25, 2011

Welcome Back!

I am absolutely thrilled to announce that EDD Update is once again up and running — but with an adjusted agenda and some fresh faces!

When we launched this blog on Sept. 25, 2007, we envisioned it as both a clearinghouse for the fast-breaking news about new electronic data discovery (EDD) products and services and for astute and nuanced commentary from a large roster of e-discovery professionals. A key goal was to get product news to you as soon as it was announced, rather than to force you to wait until the next monthly edition of Law Technology News magazine. 

It seems impossible that it's been more than four years since our premiere, and equally hard to believe that so much has changed re: the delivery of content. During those years, we consolidated's and LTN print's technology agendas, and merged our two internally-competing websites into one. This winter, we blew up more silos, creating a centralized national technology team operating out of our NewLaunch York and San Francisco offices, under the leadership of David Snow, editorial director-technology.

Sean Doherty, LTN's technology editor, now oversees our product reviews and news. I remain as editor-in-chief of LTN magazine, and also develop content for our website and continue The Common Scold blog and Law Technology Now podcast. I'm delighted to oversee EDD Update and continue my reporting and speaking at key conferences. Our team also includes news editor Brendan McKenna and associate editor Michael Roach — and we are about to hire an experienced technology reporter, who will focus on product news, reviews, and analysis. 

Continue reading "Welcome Back! " »

March 25, 2011

Coming Soon!

Eddu2 I am very thrilled to announce that EDD Update will be returning shortly! And we will be launching a new E-Discovery & Compliance Alert, that will be modeled after our LTN Daily Alert.

We'll have details for you soon — here, and on our LTN website,


November 01, 2010

Stay Tuned

FinishI'm pleased to announce some exciting developments at Law Technology News.

In October's  The American Lawyer Aric Press announced the initial stages of ALM’s reorganization of our national newsroom, which includes his promotion to vice president/editor-in-chief of the company. One of the first steps in the plan is to create a unified “technology desk” to provide content across ALM publications, which will better inform our audience about the role of technology to help readers deliver “better, faster, cheaper” legal services.

Toward that end, we are executing a very exciting revamp of our LTN website, allowing us to devote more of our editorial resources to daily news reporting online. I am especially happy about the opportunity to provide more timely and authoritative coverage of important products and services.

This also allows us to upgrade Law Technology News magazine, with more expanded analysis from our industry leaders; our award-winning columns, detailed product reviews; news about important surveys and trends; and more. We will publish the print magazine on a bi-monthly basis (6x a year) in 2011.

With those changes, we will be incorporating elements of the current EDD Update blog into our web and print operations, including plans for a weekly email newsletter about e-discovery. For the time being, EDD Update is on hold -- while we focus on the reorganization. It's still "live" so that you can enjoy and comment on any past posts, but we are not generating any new posts while we are "under construction" with the technology unit.

I want to warmly thank all of our past contributors, and our audience, for participating in this blog. We hope its evolution to the next phase will continue to help us all provide the best possible services to our constitutents.

August 05, 2010

Briefing: StoredIQ

The International Legal Technology Association will be convening Aug. 23-26 at the Aria Resort & Casino in Las Vegas, with a theme of "strategic unity" -- the need for law firms and corporate law departments to better integrate their technology into the practice of law.

Storediq That same theme was reflected in my recent phone briefing with StoredIQ's Keith Zoellner, CTO and vice president of engineering, and Ursula Talley, vice president of marketing. They explained how the StoredIQ Intelligent Information Management Platform 6 targets workflow between IT and legal units. It includes eDiscovery Manager, which features a user interface with graphical analysis and matter management dashboards to help legal professionals perform first-pass review.

Continue reading "Briefing: StoredIQ" »

July 30, 2010

Briefing: RenewData

On Wednesday, LTN news editor Dan Howley and I enjoyed a phone briefing with RenewData chief scientist Andy Kraftsow and Joe Garber, assistant vice president of marketing. They discussed the company's inception in 2001 as a tape processing vendor and evolution to a technology services provider once their clients started taking a proactive approach to e-discovery.

RenewData provides services for the discovery, archiving, and governance of electronically stored information, which primarily spans the middle section of the Socha/Gelbmann Electronic Discovery Reference Model including processing, review, analysis, and collection.

Continue reading "Briefing: RenewData" »

July 28, 2010

Briefing: Planet Data

Planet_data_logo Last week, LTN editorial assistant Heather Schultz and I held a phone briefing with Planet Data CEO Howard Reissner and president Zoltan Horvath. They co-founded the company in 2001, initially providing printing, consulting, imaging, coding, and repository services.

Horvath explained that the company works primarily in the preservation and collection through production portions of the Socha/Gelbmann Electronic Discovery Reference Model.

Continue reading "Briefing: Planet Data " »

July 14, 2010

Briefing with Fios' Mary Mack & Donna Peterson

This morning, I enjoyed a telephone briefing with Fios' ( Mary Mack, corporate technology counsel, and Donna Peterson, director of marketing communications.

Mack provided an overview of the e-discovery industry, and discussed the evolution of her duties at Fios since 2000 — when, she says, e-discovery emerged as a separate entity from forensics.

I was surprised to learn that despite the shift from paper trails to e-discovery, only 25% (or less) of law firms have adopted e-discovery. Mack writes the Sound Evidence blog, which offers insight on EDD news and trends.

Continue reading "Briefing with Fios' Mary Mack & Donna Peterson" »

June 23, 2010

LTN Vendor Satisfaction Survey: Service Rules!

Vendor The results are in from the inaugural LTN Vendor Satisfaction Survey, conducted by our ALM Legal Intelligence research group under the direction of vice president Kevin Iredell. Conducted this winter, via a confidential online poll, the survey asked legal professionals who buy -- or influence the purchase of -- legal technology to review the vendors and to tell us what they want from those vendors. (LTN's editorial team was not involved in the process.)

Anyone who has ever tried to call a major company, from a bank to an airline, will easily predict the criteria that tops the "wish list" -- customer service. Overwhelmingly (77%), respondents screamed for "responsiveness to issues and prompt resolutions."

In our July issue cover story, "Help, Please!" Law Technology News explores the survey, and analyzes its results. Here's a sneak preview of the article!

June 17, 2010

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.

PM 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)
* and firmwide director $267,000 ($295,000).

Continue reading "Cowen Group: PM is Exploding" »

June 10, 2010

CT Summation & AccessData Morph into AccessData Group

Darwin Watch: Wolters Kluwer's CT Summation and AccessData have just announced that they have signed the paperwork to merge into a single company: AccessData Group.
   The new company will offer a cradle-to-grave electronic data discovery offering, they report. Currently, AccessData's namesake e-discovery software helps users address litigation holds, automated collection, processing, and analysis prior to attorney review. CT Summation's roster includes litigation workflow and e-discovery products: iBlaze, CaseVault, and Discovery Cracker.
   AccessData CEO Tim Leehealey told Law Technology News that he will remain on as CEO, with his current management team, which includes Brian Karney (COO) and Erick Thompson (founder/CTO), among others. Whether CT Summation leaders will participate on the management team is unsettled at this time, he said. 

Continue reading "CT Summation & AccessData Morph into AccessData Group" »

June 08, 2010

More on Kroll Acquisition

From yesterday's Law Technology News website:

By Monica Bay

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.

Continue reading "More on Kroll Acquisition" »

March 01, 2010



A few housekeeping items:

1. I'm delighted to introduce our two new Law Technology News staffers, news editor Dan Howley & editorial assistant Heather Schultz. They will have an increasing presence as authors on this blog!

2. You may have noticed that we have removed vendors from the Blog Roll and EDD Website lists. Some were a bit difficult to ascertain if the authors were speaking on behalf of companies, or were individuals, so this is an honor system. If your listing is still up and you are a vendor, please wave your hand ( so I can be fair to all.

Vendors can purchase paid listings by contacting (vendor links will be in a clearly marked advertising venue on the blog).

3. We are ALWAYS looking for folks to join our ranks of EDD Update authors. If you are not a vendor, and are interested (e.g., consultant, paralegal, EDD attorney, etc.) please e-mail me with your resume ( 


February 24, 2010

Is it time to lose the ties on LTN photos?

TiesCheck out The Common Scold -- and voice your opinion.

January 18, 2010

Honoring Martin Luther King

King Today,  we take a day to reflect on the dreams and accomplishments of Martin Luther King Jr.

Here are a few links to frame the day:

• MLK's Nobel Prize biography (and photo, right).
• Wikipedia biography.
The King Center.
• "I Have a Dream" speech (YouTube).
• James Taylor's "Shed a Little Light" and the lyrics.

Have a restful and inspiring day, and let's all find the opportunity to do one unexpected act of kindness on today.

Fiat lux.

December 28, 2009

Joyful Noise

Nye Is it really possible that 2009 is just about over? Doesn't it feel like we were just welcoming this year? We've certainly been on an interesting journey over the last 12 months. (As in the Chinese curse, "May you lead an interesting life.")

But we move forward, hopefully with a dash of courage and gusto. So on behalf of our entire Law Technology News and team, and our mothership ALM, let me extend our warmest wishes to you for the holiday season.

May the remaining days of 2009 nurture spirits, refresh enthusiasm, enhance vision, inspire experiments, mute distress, challenge boundaries, generate relationships, temper irritations, magnify flavors, provide noise and quiet, and accelerate joy.

December 11, 2009

HTCIA Asia Pacific Chapter Training Conference

I'm still trying to recover from jet lag after my return from speaking at the HTCIA Asia Pacific Chapter Training Conference in Hong Kong.  The HTCIA is the High Technology Crime Investigation Association, the world's largest association of computer forensic examiners.  Though it has a decidedly law enforcement bent--to the point of forbidding its members from assisting in the defense of criminal cases--there are probably as many non-law enforcement members in the group as cops.  Accordingly, there's been a growing interest in electronic discovery among the ranks of computer forensic examiners, particularly since the local forensic examiner is often the only competent "e-discovery service provider" willing to take on smaller matters involving electronic evidence.

Continue reading "HTCIA Asia Pacific Chapter Training Conference" »

December 10, 2009

Will Smarter TIFFs from Microsoft Change E-Discovery?

Borg_7of9 I trust you know, dear reader, that the only thing dumber than a TIFF file is converting your entire e-discovery collection to TIFF images for review.  But, while wholesale TIFF conversion will forever be monumentally stupid and profligate, it appears TIFF files just acquired a few brain cells. 

At risk of being revealed as the last kid on the block to figure this out, I learned today that Microsoft offers a way to smarten up TIFF images such that load files--those hinky, stinky electronic bills of lading that must accompany TIFF image productions to make them usable--may no longer be needed.

Continue reading "Will Smarter TIFFs from Microsoft Change E-Discovery?" »

December 09, 2009

Searching ESI: A Lesson from Aunt Judy

Ensign_graf_500Imagine you borrow your buddy's mobile to phone your wife.  When you type in her cell number and hit send, the phone recognizes the number as belonging to "Aunt Judy."  Huh?  Your wife's name is Cindy.  Suspicions aroused, you start poking around in the text messages and find exchanges confirming that "Aunt Judy" and your trusted pal have been doing the horizontal mambo.  Ouch!

Continue reading "Searching ESI: A Lesson from Aunt Judy" »

November 26, 2009


Thxgvg I love Thanksgiving. It seems to be the one holiday (well, maybe Halloween's in there as well) that has no agenda other than peace and food. Of course, we all have deliciously wicked tales of dinners gone terribly, terribly wrong (check out this story from The New York Times).

But I do always like to take a moment to acknowledge some of my blessings -- among them, how grateful I am to share this journey with all of you. I've been with ALM (and its past acronyms) in New York now for 11 years, and before that, in our San Francisco office for 13 years. Over those years I have had the sweet opportunity to share your good company. We've laughed, argued, shouted (especially in the Bronx), whispered, debated, complained, applauded, sneered, giggled, sighed, cried and smiled together. I look forward to continuing our traditions, starting new ones, and above all, keeping an open and joyful heart.

May you be surrounded this Thursday by at least a few people you genuinely love, and hopefully not more than three who irritate you. My old dog's still with me, and that fact alone brings a huge smile to my face.

Joy, warmth and peace to all.

October 11, 2009

New FTC Guidelines re: Product Reviews

Craig Ball forwards these new FTC guidelines, about product endorsements,  with a hat tip to Sharon Nelson: Download 091005endorsementguidesfnnotice

August 12, 2009

Bye Bye e-? Mon Makes a Ruling!

Noway Should Law Technology News drop the e- from e-discovery?

After a wonderful debate, with 22 comments (and counting) — as well as some back-channel commentary from folks I (also) listen to very carefully — I'm ready to issue my ruling:

Nope, the e- stays.

It was a Solomon-esque decision, but ultimately, our underlying agenda is to educate folks and demystify technology, and keep things clear and simple.  I was persuaded by the arguments that with so many legal professionals still befuddled by electronic data discovery, the time isn't right to just go back to generic discovery. EDD has specific meaning, and right now, the e- helps clarify the discussion, so we will continue using e-discovery in the pages of LTN and in this blog. But let's all move to the day when we no longer need the appendage.

Continue reading "Bye Bye e-? Mon Makes a Ruling!" »

August 03, 2009

Is It Time to Lose the e- ?

Noway Today at lunch with Nixon Peabody's IT guru John Roman Jr. (of our LTN edit board) and associate Andrew Cosgrove, we got to talking about whether or not the time has come to drop the "e" in front of e-discovery.

After all, it's discovery -- and 99% of it involves electronic files.


I'm tempted to deploy  initiate adopt that policy with our next EDD Showcase in October.

Si or no?  And why? 

8/12 Update: After a long and healthy debate, and with thanks to all who commented, I'm ready to issue my ruling: The e- stays. For now......

July 27, 2009

Free E-Discovery Tools that May Be Worth a Bundle

Free Lawyers miss being toe-to-toe with the evidence. We want to attack ESI with the same hands-on "can do" capabilities we brought to bankers boxes.  For that, everyone from solos to senior partners need simple, powerful desktop and/or web-enabled tools to search and review client data. 

The proletarian tools I imagine haven't surfaced.  The good stuff isn't cheap, and even much of the pricey stuff is relentlessly ho-hum or clunky as hell.  We need, "Quickbooks for ESI:" a tool set that's as intuitive to use, affordable and easy to master as Intuit's ubiquitous accounting application.

Two "free" tools lately hit my radar screen.  Download them, try them and see what you think.  One is a truly free utility that makes the contents of forensic computer images accessible to any Windows user.  The other is a fully-functional demo of an EDD search and review platform that isn't quite there but gets so tantalizingly close in some respects that I urge you to play with it and tell its Aussie developers how to get it right.

Continue reading "Free E-Discovery Tools that May Be Worth a Bundle" »

July 12, 2009

Looking for EDD Update Authors!

Write As part of our commitment to keeping this blog fresh, and to provide a venue for new voices (and always for diversity), we're looking for a few more authors to join EDD Update's discussion.

If you are interested, or want to nominate someone who you think would be terrific, e-mail me at Eligible folks include legal professionals (lawyers, IT staff, paralegals, etc.) in law firms, law departments, or independent consultants.

Sorry, vendors are not eligible. However, vendors are thoroughly encouraged to dive vigorously into the discussions via comments and are welcome to submit "guest" posts to us.


June 12, 2009

LTN on Facebook

Are you a fan of LTN on Facebook yet? No? Check out our new Facebook page and become a fan to receive all your legal technology news -- from, our Twitter feeds, and blogs -- in one place!

December 06, 2008

Ch Ch Ch Changes

Diversity12 With EDD Update now more than a year old, Sean Doherty & I are considering how we can continue to improve it, to make it an increasingly valuable resource to you -- our readers. As mentioned below in a prior post, we encourage and invite you to send us your ideas and critiques.

But we've already decided to adopt a significant change: we are going to remove the requirement that EDD Update authors be a member of either the tech board or the Law Technology News edit board.

Why? For several reasons. Among them -- we strongly believe that this blog can provide a vehicle for new, fresh voices. While we very much value the expertise of established experts -- and want to invite more -- we also want to be sure that we are identifying new leaders, and providing a forum for them as well. Michael Arkfeld has been among those who have worried that there are not enough young voices in litigation support. We want to help.

Also fueling this desire was this fall's dismal reports about the lack of diversity in our legal community -- and embarrassing gender gaps in pay. We are committed to involving more women and minorities in our publications and efforts.

With those forces in mind, Sean and I have decided to open up our roster of authors. While we've always encouraged everyone to comment and join discussions -- but that's not the same as being an author. And hopefully, being an author can help bring attention not only to the great content we are producing, but to the great people who are contributing that content -- and help them thrive in their careers.

We still will restrict authors to non-vendors (with 600+ EDD vendors out there, it would be impossible to choose without inciting bloodshed). But vendors are, of course, encouraged to actively participate via our comments feature.

So -- we invite you to nominate candidates to join our team of authors. And yes, of course, please nominate yourself if you are interested. We're going to limit the blog to 40 authors for now. Send your nominees to either of us:

December 02, 2008

How Can We Improve EDD Update?

Question EDD Update is now just a bit more than one year old, and we thank all of you for your strong, steady support. It's been our goal to provide you with breaking news, up-to-the-minute press releases, and news and analysis from our industry's leading voices.

But as we head into year two, how can we make it better? (And no, Craig, we are NOT going to eliminate the press releases :)  But what can we do to make it an even better resource for you?

Please dive into the comments, or if you wish to communicate privately, you can e-mail Sean et moi at and


July 12, 2008

Hello, Goodbye... Hello

With great warmth we say adios to Katie Montgomery, who heads to Iowa City this summer to begin her English lit Ph.D program. And we welcome LTN's new associate editor, the delightful Nabia Jenkins-Johnston, who will be posting with our team.

Nabia (pronounced Knob-ee-ya) is a recent honors Rutgers grad, who worked with our colleague Jessica Reed on a GC project before transfering to LTN this summer.

Welcome! (We'll post a pix as soon as I take one!)

June 10, 2008

Andy's a Star

Apple_iphone3g_20080609_4OK, OK, yes I know it's off topic. But check this out: LTN edit board member Andy Jurczyk, CIO of Sonnenschein, stars in this new Apple video about the new iPhone 2.0:

Click on "Hear What IT executives are saying about iPhone 2.0" video.

The production quality is amazing!

June 02, 2008

Can You Adapt?

Cover Story: Law Technology News
June 2008

By Monica Bay

Adapt Electronic data discovery is not just raising havoc with trial strategies, risk management decisions, litigation budgets, and document retention policies, it’s also uprooting traditional support staff job descriptions in law firms, corporate law departments and vendor shops.

With EDD now a $2 billion industry that is expected to double by next year, according to the 2007 Socha-Gelbmann Electronic Discovery Survey, there's a lot of chaos as organizations try to select and use the sophisticated new technology that is necessary to conduct discovery in almost any litigation. Many trial lawyers and paralegals simply do not understand technology (and don't want to), while many IT professionals do not understand the nuances of law.

But for firms and their clients to succeed, there is no choice — they simply must adapt — and that includes redefining responsibilities. Traditional support staff roles that segregate tasks into legal (paralegals who handle document coding, deposition summaries, managing exhibits) and IT (harnessing the hardware and software) are about as useful today as floppy disks. Roles are blurring, and new titles are showing up on business cards. And there is a lot of opportunity for the ambitious.

Over the last five years, one definite trend has emerged: new roles for lawyers — as trial support staff. Firms are hiring non-partner-track staff attorneys to oversee EDD operations; using partners as ombudspersons to interface between trial lawyers and support staff; establishing e-discovery practice areas; and even spinning off subsidiary EDD companies.

Phoenix consultant Michael Arkfeld,* a former federal civil litigator, says many trial lawyers are eager to delegate anything to do with e-discovery. They are relying upon vendors, consultants and designated staff attorneys "to provide the magic wand to make it happen properly," he says. "Generally, every firm has at least one or two attorney 'champions' they rely upon to handle EDD matters. They are extremely valuable and rare."

David Baker*, chair of Chicago-based consultancy Baker Robbins & Co. (, is among the many observers who see more lawyers jumping to EDD management roles in law firms. What's in it for the firms? Trial lawyers want consulting-level assistance, not just technical information, he explains. They want their trial support team to understand the litigation process, deadlines, and strategies.

Continue reading "Can You Adapt? " »

May 20, 2008

Off Topic: Plaxo Bought by Comcast?!

Fishmo_2 This is most definitely off-topic, but fascinating: Social Networking company Plaxo has just announced that it will be bought by... Comcast!?!

May 08, 2008

FTK 2.0: Product Review

Cb027636 In the years I've been writing about forensic technology, I've shied away from reviews that dumped on products.  If I couldn't say something nice, I tried to talk about something else.  Heck, I generally steered clear of mentioning any product by name unless I liked it so much I could barely contain myself.  There are few perfect software products, and just about any application is a buggy mess in its point-O release.  Likewise, code bloat and ham-handed departure from the simple virtues that drew us to a product in the first place are common missteps.

But the problems seen in the latest 2.0 release of the venerable AccessData Corp. product, Forensic Tool Kit (FTK 2.0), just seem deeper and wider than I've run into elsewhere, and I'd be doing you a disservice, dear reader, if I glossed over them.  Read on to get a smattering of why I say "Wait! Spare yourself the pain!" when it comes to the FTK "upgrade."

Continue reading "FTK 2.0: Product Review" »

April 29, 2008

Sneak Preview: "FutureTech" at LegalTech LA

21320666_3 Campers:

I've been JUST a leetle distracted lately, putting the final touches on the upcoming, first-time ever  Law Technology News Presents FutureTech  at LegalTech West Coast.

We're calling it "The Trifecta" inside ALM, because it's the first time  we've conceived an effort that includes a live presentation, podcasts, and an LTN report.

Here's the 411:

Continue reading "Sneak Preview: "FutureTech" at LegalTech LA" »

April 28, 2008 EDD Webinar: Controlling Costs

16953829 Our latest  EDD Webinar, E-Discovery: Controlling Costs is now available. This one-hour  webinar was sponsored by EED (Thanks!) and is free.

We had a blast taping this one; how could you not with such a fabulous group of speakers:

* Craig Ball, LTN's "Ball in Your Court" columnist and Austin-based trial lawyer/tech guru/ computer forensic examiner.
* Patrick Oot, director of E-Discovery and senior lit counsel at Verizon
• Rich Hauser, senior corp. counsel, office of the general counsel, Farmers Group, Inc.
• Browning Marean, partner, DLA Piper U.S.

Yours truly was the moderator.

Enjoy!  And we love to get feedback!  Let us know what we can improve and what you like: E-mail us at

April 12, 2008

Quick Trip to MSP

Minnesota Special thanks to the gang at Kroll Ontrack and at Merrill, for taking time from their very busy schedules to meet with us this week in the Twin Cities. Our conversations were terrific, and nuanced. We talked about everything from how customer service will be a differentiator as the vendor wars escalate, to  how everybody's trying to position themselves to provide effective counseling to their clients who are struggling to grapple with e-discovery.

Kudos to Craig Levinsohn , Allison Guidette and Daniel Pelc at Merrill, and  Michele Lange and her team (including Christian Betancourt and Kaitlin Creager) for all their insights. We also had a chance to touch bases with Benjamin Green, operations manager of ComputerForensic Services. And we always enjoy a chance to feast at the St. Paul Grille with the Thomson West gang (Gretchen DeSutter, John Shaughnessy, Jeff Patrias, and Melissa Deml). (We'll be returning to Mpls in early June for a more extended visit to Eagan).

On the EDD front, both Kroll and Merrill "get" that the profession is in desperate need of education on the complex challenges they face. Toward that goal, among the many materials both vendors have been producing are white papers, surveys, podcasts and webinars.

Here are some samples:

From Merrill:
* Total Evidence Management: A winning Approach to Complex Litigation.
* Authenticating Digital Evidence: Identify and Avoid the Weak Links in Your Chain of Custody.

From Kroll:
* Electronic Discovery Filtering: Early Processing Metrics Technology: Download kroll_ontrack_early_processing_metrics.doc

* ESI Trends Report  Download 2008_esi_trends_report.pdf (Also, see next post).

March 06, 2008

Lone Star State of Technology

Texas Greetings from Texas! Having an amazing time in the beautiful  Lone Star state...

It's been non-stop EDD, with visits to Stored IQ, Renew Data, Liquid Litigation Management , IEDiscovery and Message One in Austin, along with a chance to visit with LTN's EDD columnist Craig Ball and his wonderful wife, Diana Ball.

We also had a great lunch with Trisa Thompson, of Dell Inc.'s legal department, who has graciously agreed to join LTN's editorial advisory board!

The only sour note: our ALM  colleague Joe Pavone took a spill and shattered his achilles tendon and limped back to Phoenix -- send him a get well message to cheer him up!

We had planned to drop in and surprise ILTA's Randi Mayes -- but Joe's adventure unfortunately curtailed THAT plan.

Texas2small Then it was off to Houston, where we met with Bridgeway Software Inc.,  and the gang at DataCert before we dove into Chere Estrin's Litigation Support Leaders SuperConference, at the Crowne Plaza.

If you are in the Houston metropolitan area, don't miss this conference. The faculty roster is loaded with LTN's "usual suspects,"  including keynote speakers Mike Arkfeld and George Socha, along with LTN edit board members Brett Burney and Tom O'Connor. We'd love to see you.

Texasmall It's a great crowd, with top firms and corporate legal departments, including Exxon, Shell, Chevron, Bingham McCutchen, Howrey, Thompson Hine, Ropes & Gray, et al. Come join us! The fun starts at noon today.

Chere has kindly offered a FOF (friend o' faculty) discount of 10% -- so just tell them you saw it in EDD Update to claim your not-really-early-bird discount. Pop her an e-mail at for details or visit the website.

(Click to enlarge photos)

February 06, 2008

LTNY 08: Tom Allman's Keynote

Ltnyallman_003Sean Doherty, tech editor of, writes this terrific overview of the LegalTech NY opening day keynote address, Feb. 5,by Tom Allman (left), plus other events at Day One!

Monica Bay & Craig Ball (LTN's "Ball in Your Court" columnist), discuss Allman's keynote, e-discovery trends, on a special "Live from LTNY" edition of the new Law Technology Now podcast. They are then joined by Henry Dicker, head of LegalTech NY, for a discussion on how attendees can make the most of their LTNY experience. (Hint: wear comfortable shoes.)

Photo by Russ Curtis -- click to enlarge.

February 05, 2008

CourtroomLive Launches Today

Judge ALM and Courtroom View Network,  a legal video news organization, today announced the launch  of CourtroomLive, a new service bringing exclusive live and on-demand video coverage of newsworthy and precedent-setting legal proceedings direct to professionals' desktops. Designed to serve the needs of litigators, law firms, in-house counsel, law schools, financial analysts and others in the financial and securities industry, the site provides access to live, streaming trial video; on-demand video clips of trial highlights; and customized video services.

Detailed information and a free demo of services are available here.

January 05, 2008

Your Opinion Please

21107393 As part of my planning process for LTN and upcoming webinars, I've got a question for you: What EDD topics do you think will be the most critical during 2008?

My list includes, for starters:
• Global cross-border disputes (language/privacy etc)
• Standardization & forms of production" -- e.g., "native" review, .tiff, etc.
• The marketplace (Socha/Gelbmann and other surveys)
• Search tools -- the evolution of tools to actually find information within the volume of data
• Costs -- containing costs; impact on litigants when costs, rather than justice, affect decisionmaking.
• Managing EDD -- who "owns" EDD, role of paralegals/lit support, etc.
• Educating lawyers
• Case law - key verdicts and court trends

What am I missing?

Post a comment and lemme know! Everybody's welcome to dive in.

December 05, 2007

Launch: "Law Technology Now, with Monica Bay"

Lawtechlogo_180x170_2 We've very excited to announce our new monthly podcast, Law Technology Now with Monica Bay, which is produced in partnership with Legal Talk Network. The idea behind the podcast is to supplement Law Technology News — each month, I will interview an author from the current edition. Each podcast is approximately 15 minutes long, and provides an opportunity for members of the legal community to hear about the latest developments in technology that are designed to help lawyers deliver “faster, better and cheaper” legal services to their clients.

Continue reading "Launch: "Law Technology Now, with Monica Bay" " »

December 03, 2007

EDD in San Francisco

Women_e_discovery_018_ltn_4 Warm thanks to the Bay Area chapter of Women in eDiscovery (right) and to the Estrin Paralegal SuperConference, for being such terrific audiences last week. Here's my post from The Common Scold.

Photo by Russ Curtis.

November 04, 2007

You can't spell "dream on" without ERM

I read an article this morning, linked from what I regard as the very best blog on e-discovery: K&L Gates'  Entitled, "Creating a Strong Foundation for Your Company's Records Management Practices," the piece was one of those I dutifully follow to stay abreast of--dare I say it?--one of the most boring topics on the face of the planet.
* * * * Plink! [That was the sound of all future invitations to speak at ARMA meetings evaporating.]
Okay, maybe not boring to professional records managers, but when the audience is corporate counsel, you'd better have lots of ready-to-roll action items to keep eyelids from fluttering.  Now, it's easy to criticize and hard to construct, so I don't mean to take anything away from a well written, thoughtful article when I point to the challenges I see in implementing its advice.  But, I confess that the more I study electronic records management (ERM) and the more I preach its gospel in CLE, the louder the demon on my shoulder whispers, "Who are you kidding?  They're going to keep everything."

Continue reading "You can't spell "dream on" without ERM " »

October 31, 2007

Hints for New Visitors

Quick tips on how to use our new blog:

• The main reading area is set up "clearinghouse" style, with pithy "intro" posts so you can skim content to find posts of value to you. Long posts have a "continue" link to get behind the curtain to read the post in its entirety. 

• "Categories" (right nav bar, under our list o' stellar authors) is a nifty tool that helps you sort posts by content type.

• "Typelists" (right nav bar) offers lots of links -- "Darwin" news; hot cases; other EDD blogs, etc.

We want our new blog to serve your needs, so please continue to give us feedback on how we can improve it! E-mail us here!

Cheers and thanks!

October 30, 2007

Deadline Extended for LTN Award Nominees

21585507_4 FYI: The deadline to nominate firms, law departments and individuals for the 2008 Law Technology News Awards has been extended until November 7. Details here.

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