By Tim Rollins
On E-Discovery Day last Friday, we spent a lot of time looking back over 2017 and forward to 2018. We reviewed case law, news stories, technology trends, and more. While we were in the thick of the day, it was difficult to pull out the deeper themes that recurred across our expert panels.
But with a weekend’s time, the bigger lessons of the day naturally rose to the top. These aren’t recaps, but rather highlights of what we all can do to keep e-discovery moving forward and on track toward its purpose: to achieve “just, speedy, and inexpensive” resolutions of civil disputes.
Each of these ideas could easily merit their own blog post or think-piece (and we reserve the right to do just that!), but for now, we’ll boil them down into a couple sentences each.
- Know the case law. Rulings in the courts in 2017 emphasized the importance of the basics (e.g., proportionality, defensible processes, solid information governance). But that admonition also applies in other situations—ones that merit their own bullets.
- Know the rules! It’s surprising how many lawyers aren’t thoroughly versed (or at least aren’t taking advantage of) the provisions of the FRCP and FRE. Being well-versed in the Rules isn’t just about having an advantage—it’s about fulfilling ethical obligations, as well.
- Know your process. Understanding the process and technology your organization uses for e-discovery (and information governance) form the basis of your argument about defensibility.
- Know the other party. That includes not just understanding what information you need from them in discovery, but also recognizing the need for communication and cooperation.
- Know yourself. Take the time to understand your goals in the matter, and act thoughtfully to achieve them. Performing tasks by rote without specific attention toward the task at hand often just wastes your time—and that of the court.
And finally (of course!), Know Your Memes. We asked you to come up with memes for E-Discovery Day, and you responded. We got a bunch of funny memes, but we said we’d come up with a winner. So we have. Our meme contest winner for E-Discovery Day 2017, from Christine Stansall, is below:
We’re already counting down the days ‘til E-Discovery Day 2018! (365, 364, 363…) But to tide you over until then, visit our Webcast Resources page, where you can find on demand replays of all seven Exterro-hosted webcasts.