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eDJ Contributor: Barry Murphy
Barry Murphy is a Co-Founder and SVP of Research at eDJ Group, Inc.
Date Post Title Post Summary
2013-07-18 Predictive Coding Thought Leadership Series Launches Next Week In Philly In the midst of a summer swoon and a New England heat wave, eDJ and Review Less launch the Predictive Coding Thought Leadership Series next Monday, July 22 in Philadelphia. This should be a great event, featuring facilitators from leading law firms like Schnader Harrison, Morgan Lewis and Pepper Hamilton as well as corporate facilitators from companies like Dupont (special thanks to event sponsor AlphaLit for making it possible to bring this cost-effective training to the market). The cost is only $150 for three CLE hours and the opportunity to get detailed education on Predictive Coding. If you would like to register, you can do so here: This series will come to other cities throughout the fall – you can keep track here:
2013-06-25 New eDJ Report On Predictive Information Governance Now Available eDJ’s new report, “Predictive Information Governance: The Time Has Come,” looks at how Predictive IG works and how it can positively impact multiple use-cases.
2013-06-11 New eDJ Research Initiative: Call To Participate Indications are that eDiscovery solution purchases are about to become more strategic in nature. A decade ago, it was not uncommon to see non-competitive bids for eDiscovery business because so many purchases were reactive and made under intense time pressure. In the past several months, however, the inquiries from clients have become more intelligent and more specific – a sure sign that folks are getting ready to make more strategic investments in software and services.
2013-05-22 Social Media Discovery: We Are Woefully Unprepared! It has been a topic du jour, but social media discovery does not seem to be gaining the mindshare one might expect given the explosion in usage of social media. Almost 65% of respondents in eDJ’s social experience survey indicate using external social networks (e.g. Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter) at work. I will not go into the litany of case law regarding the discoverability of social media in criminal and civil litigation. There are many JDs out there more qualified to dig into precedents and what they mean. Suffice it to say that social media is potentially discoverable and ignoring it could lead to sanctions, adverse inferences, and higher than expected eDiscovery costs.
2013-05-14 New eDJ Report On Predictive Coding In addition to the Boot Camp, we have now created a series of research reports that will give the market a good framework for understanding PC and the solutions available. The first report - Predictive Coding: What You Need To Know Now – is now live on the eDJ research site. This eDiscoveryJournal research brief, written by Karl Schieneman and Barry Murphy, explores eDJ’s survey results and market research into Predictive Coding and its impact on eDiscovery and Information Governance practices. The brief is aimed at eDiscovery professionals seeking to understand how Predictive Coding works in the review process and what to consider before making decisions on which Predictive Coding solutions to utilize.
2013-05-09 Return Of The Information Server? Information Governance (IG) is an incredibly complex task thanks to the distributed ways in which companies create and store information. The holy grail of IG is centralized management of distributed information assets. Much like the King Arthur’s grail, this IG grail is difficult, if not impossible, to find. Enterprise Content Management (ECM) approaches have not worked and enterprise search has not proven to impact the high costs associated with such activities as eDiscovery. That doesn’t stop vendors from trying to create solutions that will get us closer to finding that holy grail, as I was reminded of during a recent vendor briefing.
2013-04-25 New eDJ Report: A Starting Point For Mobile Device Discovery I did not have a chance to attend the Mobile Device Discovery Boot Camp that eDJ’s Greg Buckles ran recently in Los Angeles, but the feedback about the content has been excellent. Moreover, the issues covered – BYOD, mobile device usage policies, collection and preservation of mobile content, processing and production of mobile content – are some of the most asked-about topics we have here at eDJ. It seems to me that the overwhelming penetration of smartphones and mobile devices has organizations reluctantly accepting the fact that mobile device discovery is a critical need right now.
2013-04-22 eDJ's First Predictive Coding Boot Camp A Roaring Success eDiscoveryJournal’s first Predictive Coding Boot Camp was phenomenally successful. Led by adjunct analyst Karl Schieneman – one of the foremost Predictive Coding experts around, the Boot Camp featured a highly informative Judges Roundtable, a session focused on lifting the covers off Predictive Coding, and a session on validation.
2013-04-18 Join Barry Murphy At DOCUMENT Strategy Forum on April 30th Later this month – April 30 – I will be speaking at the DOCUMENT Strategy Forum on 4/30 in Greenwich, CT. My session will focus on eDiscovery and the Cloud. Titled, “Out of Sight, Out of Mind: Managing Cloud-Based Enterprise Information for Fast Access, Review and Analysis,” this session will cover what you need to know about conducting eDiscovery with Cloud-based information management solutions.
2013-04-10 Reasons People Do Not Use Predictive Coding After analyzing some of the preliminary results of eDJ’s Predictive Coding survey, I hypothesized that Predictive Coding (PC) would likely gain mainstream adoption in 2013. To date, more than half of respondents have tried PC and are doing so in a systematic way (versus in a purely experimental way). Since just over half of respondents have used PC, there is still a significant minority that have yet to embrace this new approach to eDiscovery and information governance. Our survey data reveals some of the reasons that eDiscovery professionals have not yet adopted PC. While there is not one dominant reason, some of the top factors that keep users away from PC include: Lack of cases that have justified using PC; Lack of comfort with PC technology; and Cost.
2013-03-27 The "Social Experience" In eDiscovery Throughout 2012, social media in eDiscovery was an emerging topic of interest. While most of our clients and readers were not actually collecting and preserving social media often, there was a clear interest in the topic and a desire to be ready when the need arose. Earlier this years, we at eDJ alluded to the fact that we would be expanding our coverage of “social” issues in eDiscovery. By expanding coverage, we do not just mean looking further into best practices for social media collection and preservation; instead, we are expanding the topic to cover more of the “social experience.”
2013-03-21 eDJ's Defensible Deletion Survey Data Available Now For Platinum Subscribers Many clients have asked for the raw data from eDJ’s surveys and traditionally, we have held those data sets for our own analysis. Recently, though, we decided that making our data sets available to Platinum Research subscribers could actually extend the power of analysis. After all, eDJ’s analysts will look at the data from many different angles, but not necessarily every single angle. Rather than have clients have to ask us for custom cuts of the data, we want to be flexible and allow clients to analyze the data for themselves.
2013-03-19 New eDJ Report: A Green Light At The Intersection Of Information Governance And eDiscovery Coming out of LTNY 2013, it was clear that Information Governance (IG) was a hot topic. In fact, ARMA ran a whole-day track at the show that was dedicated to IG and the attendance was great. The number one question I get about IG is, “how do I get started?” People want to know where the rubber meets the road when it comes to IG. There is a thirst for pragmatic knowledge versus theoretical outcomes. One of my stock answers is that eDiscovery projects are a great place to start IG programs. At eDJ, we talk regularly to clients that are working on these projects and we understand the lessons they have learned. We have taken those lessons and combined them with survey data we have to create the new report “A Green Light at the Intersection of Information Governance and eDiscovery.”
2013-03-18 The eDiscoveryJournal 2013 Research Agenda Producing eDJ research is a team effort. As always, you can find our latest report on the eDJ Research Reports page of the site. We have a great group of analysts, each of whom has deep knowledge within very specific topic areas. There is a natural synergy between those topics areas and we capture those synergies and tie all eDJ research together into themes. Many clients and readers ask what kind of research we are focusing on, we we pooled our research agendas to create a broader, company-wide one.
2013-03-11 A Real Experience With Social Media Archiving Towards the end of Q1, we plan to do some more research on “social business” and eDiscovery. As I posted about previously, we are expanding our social media governance topic to include “social business.” Email as long been a primary target of eDiscovery because so much communication travels through email. Increasingly, though, people use more types of “social” interactions including instant messaging (IM) and both internal (e.g. Jive) and external (e.g. FaceBook, Twitter) social media. eDiscovery and information governance (IG) professionals need to be able to govern, collect, preserve, review, and produce all records of collaboration within an organization.
2013-03-07 Predictive Coding: Mainstream Adoption In 2013? Are you ready for Predictive Coding? Few topics have been as hyped over the last two years in the eDiscovery world. So hyped, in fact, that the mere mention of Predictive Coding can be cringe-inducing. Too often, the focus is on whether or not there is a case where Predictive Coding has been allowed or disallowed. The back and forth of whether or not Predictive Coding is acceptable and defensible has made people weary, and understandably so.
2013-02-27 eDJ's Predictive Coding Boot Camp Is Not To Be Missed Yesterday, Marilyn Gladden introduced the eDiscoveryJournal Bootcamp Program. We are excited to bring pragmatic, in-depth, and actionable advice to eDiscovery professionals in an intimate environment. The current boot camp series covers some great topics: selecting an eDiscovery service provider; BYOD and mobile forensics; Legal Hold; and Predictive Coding. In this article, I would like to go a bit deeper into the Predictive Coding boot camps.
2013-02-20 eDJ To Expand Coverage Of "Social" Information Information Governance (IG) was much simpler when information existed in paper form. Important documents were classified as records and sent to a central location to be filed and stored. That central information store was the go-to source for information when litigation or regulatory requests arose. There was a certain comfort in having that central control over information. Today, however, times have changed and that comfort level has been destroyed.
2013-02-14 eDJ's Predictive Coding Webinar Gets Great Response This past Tuesday, I had a chance to participate in the eDiscoveryJournal webinar, “TAR: From 10,000 Feet To Ten Feet, Let’s Get In The Weeds.” Without any hint of hyperbole, I can honestly rank it in the top two webinars I have ever been part of. You know a webinar is good when you have a hard time getting all the way through the content and the audience fires a continuous stream of questions throughout. Not only that, but also virtually all attendees stayed until the end, which happened to be fast minutes past the end time.
2013-02-13 Moving On From LTNY In years past, getting back to work in the days and weeks after LegalTech New York was sometimes difficult. The challenge was getting past the hype and big messages touted at the show and translating that into real action on the ground. That challenge is not there this year. Instead, we are already knee-deep in real-world projects; it is as if LTNY was not a hype machine, but rather confirmation that eDiscovery and information governance waste must be cleaned up.
2013-02-04 Barry Murphy's LegalTech 2013 Wrap Up Another year, another LegalTech New York. But 2013’s LTNY was not just a regular old conference; rather, this year’s show was marked by high energy and a positive vibe. Overall, the biggest theme that came through to me was progress. eDiscovery professionals are making real progress on the ground. The hyperbole about what might happen was muted by the discussion about what is happening or what kinds of real plans are in place. The theme of progress resonated with me because of three trends that surfaced at LTNY 2013: fervor around information governance (IG); more pragmatism around technology-assisted review (TAR) and predictive coding; and a closer examination of the implications of privacy and related security issues.
2013-01-24 What Analysts Look For At Legal Tech With Legal Tech New York 2013 right around the corner, it is a good time to explain what an industry analyst looks for at a show as big as LTNY. A large event like LTNY provides the opportunity for an analyst to get a pulse for the industry. The likely hot topics for the year become evident in vendor tag-lines and in educational sessions.
2013-01-22 Law Firms Versus Service Providers? It was just over a year ago that I wrote an article about whether or not the evolution of eDiscovery was forcing law firms to change business models. The question that article proposed was: would law firms become eDiscovery service providers, bringing technology solutions (either their own or partner-provided) to the table, focus on the practice of law, or both? Certainly, we have seen law firms get into this business before, back when it was possible to command over $1,000 per GB for processing data. Many firms got addicted to this revenue, only to be disappointed as processing got commoditized and margins disappeared.
2013-01-10 New eDJ Group Report Available: Defensible Deletion Topic Overview Throughout 2012, a not-so-new concept began to surface in earnest: deletion of information. eDJ’s consultants have supported expiry initiatives for years, but until 2012 few corporate counsel and IT were ready to take responsibility for the potential consequences of expiring ESI that might turn out to be relevant to an evolving matter. This year brought a change of attitude to these initiatives. eDJ consultants have been involved in recent projects that have purged terabytes of non-record files and email. Our new report provides an overview of the defensible deletion topic.
2013-01-09 eDJ Quick Analysis: IBM To Acquire StoredIQ IBM made a commitment to the unstructured Big Data management challenge today, announcing its intent to acquire StoredIQ (SIQ). The price of the acquisition was not disclosed. Nowhere is the unstructured Big Data challenge more pronounced than in eDiscovery and information governance (IG) projects. The addition of SIQ does give IBM a valuable component to be able to apply policy to new content sources (fileshares, etc.) in-place and do pre-collection analysis for eDiscovery in-place.
2013-01-08 eDJ Group Launches New Predictive Coding Survey To date, the discussion around predictive coding has mostly been at either a 10,000-foot level, centered around hype, or about twisting case law to suit a particular party’s needs. What has been lacking is some real, ground-floor advice about how predictive coding actually works, when it works best, and how it is being used today. The predictive coding discussion in 2013 should move from 10,000 feet to about 100 feet, with emphasis on more experimental use and results in addition to common mistakes and some best practices. In order to help facilitate a more pragmatic discussion, we at eDJ Group have launched a survey to understand attitudes towards and plans for predictive coding.
2013-01-03 New eDJ Report: Predictive Coding Case Study The cost of eDiscovery and document review specifically, has encouraged many corporations and law firms to begin working with Technology Assisted Review (“TAR”) solutions. The corporations are interested in leveraging recent analytical improvements to review applications, their law firms are sensitive to higher expectations regarding legal process efficiencies, and legal service providers are striving to provide the brightest reviewers and best-of-breed applications. One such corporation revealed to eDJ its efforts to reduce legal review costs using a form of TAR known as predictive coding
2012-12-20 New eDJ Group Report: 2012 Q4 Market Update The analysts at eDJ Group periodically like to share perspectives on the solutions providers in the eDiscovery market. Last spring, we wondered if the winners and losers in the eDiscovery software market had already been determined. This summer, we looked at whether or not the software giants are dominating the eDiscovery market. With the launch of (our service & technology comparator and research engine), eDJ Group now has the ability to truly cover all eDiscovery solutions providers; be they software providers, service providers, or a combination of both. As we ramp up all of the listings, we wanted to share some of our thoughts and perspectives on many of the providers we cover throughout the year.
2012-12-18 eDJ Group's 2012 Pet Peeves List A pet peeve is a minor annoyance and anyone in an industry long enough will develop enough pet peeves to last a lifetime. Some pet peeves represent harmless cynicism, while others may be indicative of a bigger problem. Which is why when one person’s pet peeve becomes a whole industry’s pet peeve, change is inevitable.
2012-12-12 Free eDJ Group Report on eDiscovery 2012: The Year In Review At the end of a year, it is always interesting to look back and analyze what happened. The eDiscovery market in 2012 proved to be an interesting one to follow. While there were hot topics like The Cloud and technology-assisted review (TAR) and predictive coding commanding major headlines, there were also signs of real progress in our industry. Companies began to ask the right questions about storing data in The Cloud. What are the discovery obligations? Who controls the data? How secure is the data?
2012-12-10 New eDJ Group Report: 2013 eDiscovery Trends The eDJ Group has released a new research report about 2013 eDiscovery trends. In 2013, expect to see the eDiscovery market at a crossroads. eDiscovery is no longer in its infancy, but it is not yet mature either. That will not stop those that look ahead to aggressive information governance (IG) projects as the solution to corporate eDiscovery problems. Rather, 2013 will see eDiscovery as an awkward, gangly teenager – starting to find its way and gaining some confidence, but perhaps trying too hard to be an adult.
2012-12-04 Defensible Deletion Gaining Steam
2012-11-28 What’s In A Name? eDiscovery Platform Or Not? Sometimes the same story can play out over and over again, albeit with slightly different twists. As a Forrester Research analyst in 2005, I co-authored a report titled “The Enterprise Content Management Dilemma: Point Solution Or Suite.” The premise was simple: a content management platform that could manage all information for all purposes (persuasive for marketing and sales, knowledge for employee use, records retention for compliance and risk) made more sense in theory than multiple applications to manage all that information.
2012-11-12 Prepare For eDJ Group's Q4 eDiscovery Market Update Periodically, the analysts at eDJ Group like to share perspectives on the solutions providers in the eDiscovery market. Last spring, we wondered if the winners and losers in the eDiscovery software market had already been determined. This summer, we looked at whether or not the software giants are dominating the eDiscovery market. In early December, we will do a much larger overview of eDiscovery solutions across a wider array of players.
2012-11-01 Understanding Attitudes On Defensible Deletion This summer, I wrote about defensible deletion gaining steam, as evidenced by questions being asked by many consulting clients and new vendor offerings aimed at allowing companies to get rid of unnecessary information. Then recently, I read Barclay Blair’s article in LTN about the clash brewing between Big Data and eDiscovery protocols. The title of Barclay’s article insinuates that two camps are form – those that want to keep all data forever and simply analyze and those that want to defensibly delete and lower risk. Thankfully, the article goes on to suggest that both of these things can happen in parallel.
2012-10-23 Help A College Student's eDiscovery Survey Efforts It is not only research firms like eDJ Group that are interested in how law firms are building out eDiscovery practices. We now know of a student at John Carroll University doing a survey on this topic for a class. In an effort to help build a substantial set of data, eDJ Group will aware a $250 gift card to a randomly selected survey participant. It's not just about data, however - we are genuinely interested in this topic because it would seem that law firms are a crossroads. Corporations need law firms to be thought leaders on eDiscovery at the same time as needing to control costs. Law firms need to decide if they are providers of eDiscovery services or consumers of eDiscovery services...or both.
2012-10-19 eDiscovery And The Cloud At Document Strategy Forum
2012-10-15 eDiscovery Education? Yes! eDiscovery Certification? Maybe... In response to multiple client inquiries about eDiscovery education and certification programs, eDJ Group ran a survey on the topic this past summer. The survey sought to understand the available eDiscovery and related information governance education, certification and training programs. What we found is that the eDiscovery education market is just beginning to form and that the programs available are deep and complex; far too deep for eDJ cover each program in depth. Instead, we will share our findings throughout a series of articles in the hopes that data will help inform decisions and start fruitful conversations and debates.
2012-10-10 Analysis: Transperfect Acquires Digital Reef Last week, TransPerfect Legal Solutions acquired eDiscovery software provider Digital Reef for an undisclosed amount. Traditionally, TransPerfect has been know for its legal translation solutions, giving the company presence in multi‐language court cases. The company also has eDiscovery and court reporting services. Digital Reef provides software for collection, processing, analysis, and first‐pass review of data.
2012-10-04 Get Ready For The eDiscoveryMatrix It is time to confirm that the rumors are true – the eDJ Group will be launching the subscription research site in early October. eDJ Group is now the only research firm with analysts writing, producing and analyzing data, and working in the trenches on current, granular eDiscovery issues. With the launch of this new site, eDJ Group will have the ability to distribute research reports to all subscribers rather than simply selling them a la carte.
2012-09-25 An Interesting Framework For Information Governance
2012-09-17 Signs Of Information Governance Maturity? Now that eDiscovery and information governance (IG) are fairly mainstream topics, it is important to look for signs of maturity in practice. Are organizations creating best practices? Are out-of-control eDiscovery costs actually becoming manageable? There is anecdotal evidence of moving up the maturity curve, but what does the broader data say? While analyzing the data from an IG survey eDJ Group conducted in association with ViaLumina, Ltd, there is evidence of maturity, but that evidence may actually be a red herring.
2012-09-11 Managed Services: The Focus at TCG’s ILTA Breakfast It was a packed house at The Cowen Group’s semi-annual in-person New New Leaders Breakfast at ILTA last week with 50 eDiscovery and litigation support professionals gathered from across the country. David Cowen kicked off the week with many inquisitive looks from his audience when he walked up to a white board and scrawled the letters WHAWHN. The acronym stands for “what happens after what happens next” and David believes asking this question is essential for anyone who strives to be a leader in this space. Wayne Gretzky, arguably the greatest hockey player to ever play the game, is famously quoted as saying, “I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been.” For those in the legal technology industry, it is time to think about where the puck is going, and David believes the puck is moving toward managed services.
2012-09-04 Barry Murphy's Quick ILTA Wrap The last week of summer was more hectic than usual because I spent Monday and Tuesday at the International Legal Technology Association (ILTA) conference. Unlike other eDiscovery conferences, this had a more casual feel, with lots of attendees in shorts, tee shirts, and flip flops. I had a chance to meet with several vendors and colleagues and three themes kept coming up: technology-assisted review (TAR); the role of managed services in the eDiscovery market; and pricing models.
2012-08-23 Embracing Social Media, In The Right Way, Is Good For Business There are cynics who claim that social media are time wasters that ultimately distract employees from the job at hand. While that may be true at times, social media ultimately presents a huge opportunity for businesses – an opportunity too big to overlook. How big? In the McKinsey Global Institute’s (MGI) recent report, “The social economy: Unlocking value and productivity through social technologies” it is estimated that “social media technologies could potentially contribute $900 billion to $1.3 trillion in annual value.” And that estimate is only for four industries: consumer packaged goods, retail financial services, advanced manufacturing, and professional services.
2012-08-20 eDiscovery And GRC: When Shall The 'Twain Meet? It can be easy to forget that there are adjacent markets that, to some extent, overlap with or envelope eDiscovery. One such market is Governance, Risk, and Compliance (GRC). The other day, a message from a former Forrester Research colleague of mine – Michael Rasmussen, now of Corporate Integrity – reminded me of the overlap of GRC and eDiscovery. Michael views GRC as “an approach to business – an approach that permeates the organization: its oversight, its processes, its culture, its boundaries.”
2012-08-14 A Different Flavor of TAR at TCG Chicago Leadership Breakfast Each of The Cowen Group (TCG) Leadership Breakfasts has its own unique feel. While there are many common discussion points, such as the disruptive nature of Technology Assisted Review (TAR), the need for new skills like project management, and the desire to capture the cost savings TAR promises; each event takes on a life of its own. The Chicago Leadership Breakfast was no different – there was discussion about the benefits of TAR and the challenges to widespread adoption, but there was a more pragmatic feel to the overall discussion and an emphasis on metrics that can prove the value of TAR. It was actually a perfect way to head into the hiatus before the next breakfasts in Atlanta and Minneapolis in September.
2012-08-08 West Coast TCG Leadership Breakfast Focused on the Who of TAR Following the country-wide tour of The Cowen Group (TCG) Leadership Breakfasts is proving to be valuable and interesting. There are commonalities in each city, such as the fact that most attendees realize that technology-assisted review (TAR) is the inevitable future of legal review and presents new economic opportunities for corporations, law firms, and service providers alike. But, the breakfasts in each city each have a unique local flavor.
2012-08-07 Tangible Examples Of TAR Technology-Assisted Review (TAR) is not simply a hyped up market category. In fact, I predicted late last year that 2012 would be the year that TAR goes mainstream. That prediction was based on data from an eDJ Group survey that found that by the end of 2012, market penetration for the TAR technique predictive coding should be over 50%. In getting beyond the hype of the Da Silva Moore and Kleen Products cases, I have had the opportunity to speak with several end users about their experiences with predictive coding and other forms of TAR. Those stories will be featured in an upcoming report from eDJ Group.
2012-08-02 Los Angeles Breakfast Attendees Focus on White Knights for Adoption of TAR
2012-07-30 The TAR Discussion Evolves At TCG Breakfast In Washington, DC At The Cowen Group (TCG) Leadership Breakfast in New York two weeks ago, it was agreed by all technology-assisted review (TAR) is a game-changing, disruptive force in eDiscovery and information governance (IG). At last Thursday’s breakfast in Washington, DC, the conversation shifted a bit to include the happy fact that TAR can help satisfy the needs of many constituents: the corporate Legal department that wants to reduce review costs and have more predictable litigation spend; the law firms that want to make more review dollars at higher margins; and the vendors and service providers that want to develop the expertise to help both corporations and law firms.
2012-07-26 Are The Software Giants Dominating The eDiscovery Market? In the wake of our article on the winners and losers in the eDiscovery software market, a client recently suggested to us that the software giants are not yet the best landing spots for eDiscovery software vendors. The impetus for this observation was news from two vendors – Symantec and HP – that software acquisitions in the eDiscovery market had underperformed. The revenue from Symantec’s Clearwell business was less than expected in calendar Q1 2012. HP’s executives admitted on their last earnings call that the Autonomy license revenue had a significant decline year-over-year.
2012-07-23 The Cowen Group Q3 Kick Off In New York City The main message from attendees at The Cowen Group (TCG) Leadership Breakfast in New York last Thursday is that technology-assisted review (TAR) is a game-changing, disruptive force in eDiscovery and information governance (IG). TAR has the potential to change the way that law is practiced, according to one distinguished panelist. To harness the power of TAR, however, the legal industry must change. Instead of slowly adopting new technologies and ways of conducting business, the industry must begin experimenting with innovative solutions in order to keep pace with the demands of corporate clients.
2012-07-17 Examining The Impact Of TAR: The Cowen Group Breakfast Series Technology-Assisted Review (TAR) stands to change the way traditional linear legal review functions in a significant way. The fallout of this change will impact corporations, law firms, legal technology and service providers, and eDiscovery professionals everywhere. What will that change look like? There are plenty of ideas – fewer contract reviewers, more high-margin TAR specialists, greater reliance on managed services – but it is not clear just yet which path will be the road more traveled.
2012-07-12 Defensible Deletion Gaining Steam Get ready for it folks – there is another “term” battle brewing in the eDiscovery market. Like the debate over technology-assisted review (TAR), computer-assisted review (CAR), and predictive coding (PC), there is a similar one between defensible disposition, defensible deletion, and active expiration. Hopefully, the terminology debate will take a back seat to the real story, which is that companies can reduce costs and decrease risks by proactively getting rid of unnecessary information.
2012-06-28 Early Survey Results Show Strong Interest In eDiscovery Education And Training The summer season is officially underway so the last thing anyone wants to think about is school, right? Well, in the eDiscovery market, that is not true – education and certification is a hot topic. eDiscovery professionals are constantly asking eDJ analysts which programs to attend. eDJ launched a survey last month to understand what eDiscovery professionals think about training and certification in our industry and the preliminary results create some food for thought.
2012-06-21 Law Firms Not Meeting General Counsels' eDiscovery Expectations? One of the great things about managing a syndication feed is that we get to see virtually everything written about eDiscovery on a daily basis. Granted, only about 5% of what comes through is truly newsworthy, but the constant reminder of what is happening is very valuable. For example, I came across a blog by Christopher Spizzirri that presented some data I otherwise would likely not have become aware of – that 75% of General Counsel rank outside counsel not providing adequate support for eDiscovery requirements as a top frustration of the past year. And, 63% of GCs rank the same issue as a top concern for the next year.
2012-06-12 eDJ Launches Survey On eDiscovery Education, Training, And Certification Programs When working with eDiscovery professionals, eDJ analysts encounter a common question: which education and certification programs are worthwhile for advancing my career? It is a question for which there is not an easy, straightforward answer. First, the practice of eDiscovery is just starting to gain some maturity and training and certification in the market is relatively new. That creates an opportunity for educational programs and certifications to potentially thrive – and because of that, many programs have come to the market. In order to provide an answer to our clients, eDJ seeks to understand the available eDiscovery and related information governance education, certification and training programs.
2012-06-07 eDiscovery Evolving In Asia This week, I attended and spoke at InnoXcell’s Asia eDiscovery Exchange. Jeffrey Teh at InnoXcell gathered a great group of speakers and an audience of active eDiscovery and investigatory professionals. Conferences are great when the audience asks hard questions and the attendees here certainly weren’t afraid to speak up. It is great to see the interest level in eDiscovery and Information Governance (IG) rising in Asia.
2012-05-24 eDiscovery Software Winners And Losers Update In our piece earlier this week on the pool of winners and losers in the eDiscovery software market, we made some mistakes and omissions. The mistakes we can eliminate in the future with better editorial processes (we are a growing, learning organization like everyone else). The omissions will happen from time to time, especially in a market with so many small yet innovative vendors. It is a constant challenge to keep up with the complex offering of the large software providers in addition to the many point solutions that exits. Thankfully, we have readers that keep us on our toes and remind us when we make a mistake or forget to include all the relevant players.
2012-05-22 Are The Winners And Losers In The eDiscovery Software Market Already Determined? An interesting question came up during an internal meeting of eDJ’s analysts last week: Are the winners and losers in the eDiscovery software market essentially already determined? (Or at the very least, is the winning pool of candidates firmly established?) For so long, a large number eDiscovery software vendors competed in the market and it felt like there would be rounds of consolidation. Some commoditization has occurred, but not as much as we thought would have by this point.
2012-05-03 The Real Winners In Technology-Assisted Review Are... It’s time to make a call: the biggest winner in Technology-Assisted Review (TAR) will be…wait for it…expert witnesses. For those of you not familiar with the role of an expert witness, according to Federal Rule of Evidence 702, “A witness who is qualified as an expert by knowledge, skill, experience, training, or education may testify in the form of an opinion or otherwise if: (a) the expert’s scientific, technical, or other specialized knowledge will help the trier of fact to understand the evidence or to determine a fact in issue;(b) the testimony is based on sufficient facts or data; (c) the testimony is the product of reliable principles and methods; and(d) the expert has reliably applied the principles and methods to the facts of the case.” When TAR is involved, such an expert must understand software, review processes and approaches, and advanced statistics – a tall order that will likely lead to hourly rates of over $1,000 for those willing to appear in court and show off their knowledge.
2012-05-01 Amazon Has A Story To Tell In eDiscovery The more I research The Cloud and how eDiscovery will be enabled in it, the more I realize how little of the full story has been told. Last week, we reported on X1 Discovery becoming part of the Amazon AWS (Amazon Web Services) ISV (Independent Software Vendor) program. Amazon’s ISV program for AWS is very new and if you search for eDiscovery on the ISV site, you won’t get a lot of results. In fact, I don’t think even Amazon understands just how much potential there is to be the only public Cloud provider with a robust cadre of eDiscovery solutions at the fingertips of customers. That could be a differentiator, especially for serial litigants or regulated companies that want to leverage Cloud-based solutions.
2012-04-18 eDiscovery Coming To The Cloud While companies embrace The Cloud for various business purposes, the ability to conduct eDiscovery on information stored in The Cloud tends to be an afterthought – less than 16% of respondents in eDJ’s survey last year reported creating an eDiscovery plan before moving data to The Cloud. This number is not surprising. eDiscovery is not exactly the sexiest topic in the world and, unless a company has been burned before, there is less urgency to prepare for it. In addition, many just assume that, as long as data is searchable, eDiscovery requirements are met. It is not as simple as that, unfortunately. Recently, though, eDJ was briefed on product aimed at making eDiscovery of data stored in The Cloud possible in an efficient manner.
2012-04-10 Information Governance Percolating In Companies I had the opportunity to attend eDJ’s Peer Group meetings last week, where the topic of discussion was information governance (IG). The Peer Group meetings are fascinating because real IG practitioners speak up about very real issues. I was struck by how daunting the challenge of truly governing information is. As electronic data grows exponentially, managing the risk that information poses is harder and harder. For every effort a company takes to safeguard information, employees create a workaround if that effort impinges on the velocity of information. In turn, those workarounds lead to a vicious circle of eDiscovery nightmares.
2012-03-29 Social Media Governance Back In The News My research on social media collection and preservation is getting more and more interesting. One of the bigger issues is user privacy. If I post information on FaceBook and use the proper security protocols to be specific about who I share that info with, should anyone else have a right to access it? The Stored Communications Act of 1986 would seemingly protect a user’s FaceBook content from being released to third parties – and it does, to an extent. The SCA prevents publishers from releasing an individual’s information to third-parties, even in response to a civil subpoena. But, it does not protect as much in the event of a criminal investigation and there are ways around the SCA for both criminal and some civil cases.
2012-03-22 Da Silva Moore Fast Becoming Landmark eDiscovery Case The Da Silva Moore case is quickly becoming a landmark matter in the eDiscovery realm. The use of Technology-Assisted Review (TAR), specifically predictive coding, in the case is the subject of much scrutiny at the moment. eDiscoveryJournal has covered the case extensively, including being the first to note that early headlines got Judge Peck’s opinion wrong – he had not ordered the use of predictive coding in the case or endorsed the technology of any single vendor; he had simply approved of the defendant’s use of predictive coding in this case.
2012-03-15 Technology-Assisted Review: What Should We Call This Market? Thanks to all who attended our technology-assisted review (TAR) for eDiscovery webinar. There was a great turnout and our guests – Chuck Rothman of Wortzman Nickle and Thomas Gricks of Schnader, Harrison, Segal & Lewis – offered valuable insights on how to use TAR and get value from it. Chuck also contributed an article to eDiscoveryJournal this week on what predictive coding really is. Chuck’s article title points out the confusion in the market about what different terms actually mean.
2012-03-13 Social Media Collection And Preservation There are some that believe social media is replacing email. In reality, it will take time for social media adoption to occur and for everyone to abandon email – lots of time perhaps. As companies transition and begin to leverage social media, there is the opportunity to avoid the mistakes made in the email generation. One thing is clear: companies that dive into social media without the right policies and solutions to govern usage will encounter information governance and eDiscovery nightmares down the road.
2012-02-07 Guidance Software Acquires CaseCentral: eDJ's Take Today, Guidance Software announced the acquisition of CaseCentral, a provider of EDD processing and review. According the press release, “under the terms of the agreement, Guidance Software will acquire CaseCentral for upfront consideration of approximately $17.1 million, consisting of $8.3 million in cash, $8.3 million in Guidance Software common stock, and the assumption of $0.5 million of debt, net of cash. Depending on CaseCentral’s SaaS revenue growth, Guidance Software may pay up to an additional $33 million in cash over the next three years.”
2012-01-30 Barry Murphy Of eDJ Group Wraps Up LTNY Day 1
2012-01-27 It's Off To LegalTech We Go The eDiscovery year tends to begin with a bang at the LegalTech Conference in New York (LTNY). LTNY 2011 promoted some pragmatic ideas such as managing eDiscovery as a process and taking control of Information Governance (IG), while also hinting at forthcoming heat around “the Cloud” and predictive coding. If my pre-briefings from vendors this week are any indication, LTNY 2012 will feature similar issues, albeit flavored a bit differently to taste.
2012-01-16 Symantec Buys Into The Cloud With Acquisition Of LiveOffice As the buzz around The Cloud has built over the last few years, one company remained noticeably silent about plans for The Cloud – Symantec. Rival companies like IBM and Autonomy began introducing cloud archiving products in addition to existing on-premise archiving products. With its market-leading archiving product Enterprise Vault, Symantec no doubt felt the competitive impact of cloud solutions, but when queried about a cloud strategy, the company would only mention its partnership with LiveOffice. Turns out, LiveOffice is the Symantec cloud strategy – Symantec has acquired LiveOffice for $115 million.
2012-01-12 eDJ Survey On Predictive Coding And Debate Over PC-TAR Term A recent Forbes blog by by Amanda Jones & Ben Kerschberg pointed out how technology-assisted review in eDiscovery can increase review accuracy and decrease overall review costs. The article mainly refers to the use of predictive coding, but touches on what has been called “technology assisted review.” Last month, Jason Velasco here at eDJ offered up the acronym PC-TAR (predictive coding – technology assisted review) to avoid controversy.
2012-01-10 New eDJ Group Report - Gearing Up For The Cloud And Social Media For the past two months, eDJ has been running a survey on eDiscovery and The Cloud. The results teach us some excellent lessons: that eDiscovery is an afterthought in The Cloud and that The Cloud does not kill off on-premise collection and preservation tools. Now, eDJ has published the first report in our series on eDiscovery and The Cloud: "Gearing Up for The Cloud and Social Media." One finding is that The Cloud and Social Media have generated more heat than actual action.
2012-01-06 Research Evolves On Predictive Coding-Technology Assisted Review (PC-TAR) One of eDJ’s predictions for 2012 is that PC-TAR (predictive coding-technology assisted review) goes mainstream. Instead of just sitting and waiting to see what happens with PC-TAR, we are actively researching it. Watch for the launch of an eDJ survey on the topic next week (and the chance to win yet another prize from eDJ for participating in our research). Jason Velasco did a call-out for anyone using PC-TAR to speak with us and we’ve been able to talk to actual practitioners. I want to quickly share some of what we are learning and call for anyone else trying PC-TAR to email us and share your story.
2011-12-29 EPIQ's Acquisition Of De Novo Legal A Sign Of Things To Come Yesterday, EPIQ Systems announced its acquisition of De Novo Legal for $68 million. It’s a 2011 transaction, but look for it to be indicative of something to expect in 2012 – service providers getting bigger and broader geographic coverage via acquisition. While huge acquisitions on par with HP’s purchase of Autonomy or Symantec’s purchase of Clearwell are certainly a possibility, the real action is more likely to be in the service provider business.
2011-12-21 More Perspective Needed On eDiscovery Burden Argument? At eDJ, we’ve been thinking a lot about the recent Congressional Hearing on The Costs and Burdens of Civil Discovery. Being deeply involved in the eDiscovery market, we hear every day from companies seeking to make discovery a more efficient process. We also work with companies seeking to put in place proactive information governance (IG) initiatives with the ultimate goal of making eDiscovery less of a reactive, expensive burden.
2011-12-15 eDJ's eDiscovery Trends: 2012 What a year 2011 has been for the eDiscovery market. The Analysts at eDJ put our heads together and reviewed what transpired in 2011 and what kind of trends we will see in 2012. As a thank you for your support throughout the year, eDJ’s report “eDiscovery Trends: 2011 Year in Review and Forecasting 2012” is available for free download. 2011 saw trends around pragmatic ideas such as managing eDiscovery as a process and taking control of Information Governance (IG), while also hinting at forthcoming heat around “the Cloud” and predictive coding. We also saw the beginning of the rise of the “eDiscovery platform,” with vendors advertising solutions that could manage the full eDiscovery lifecycle. And, there was continued merger and acquisition (M & A) activity in the Discovery marketplace, with two acquisitions in the “bombshell” category given the premiums paid by acquirers. Symantec bought Clearwell in June, 2011 for close to $400 million (a premium of approximately 8x Clearwell’s revenues), while HP bought Autonomy for about $11 billion (a premium of more than 10x).
2011-12-01 Thoughts On The State Of Information Governance Currently, we are working on a “State of Information Governance” report, wherein we slice the numbers from the survey a bit further to gauge how mature the practice of IG is. While the general results of the survey show IG gaining traction within organizations, the actual practice of IG seems to be fairly basic thus far. The State of IG report will go further into the many reasons we say this, but we wanted to share one statistic that shows IG programs have yet to completely evolve.
2011-11-14 eDiscovery An Afterthought in The Cloud It would be naïve to think that eDiscovery could knock the train that is “the cloud” off its rails. However, the stringent rules that companies are under to produce information in a timely manner for litigation or compliance purposes could be a thorn in the side for both companies and cloud providers a alike. eDJ is currently running a survey on eDiscovery and the cloud (take it and you could win a Kindle Fire). Analysis of the data is ongoing and the findings are both interesting and a bit scary for anyone responsible for information management.
2011-11-09 The Cloud Does Not Kill Off On-Premise eDiscovery Solutions Cloud computing is a hot topic. The cloud’s ability to provide solutions that are lower cost and simpler to manage just cannot be ignored. Our recent SaaS survey showed that approximately 75% of respondents are leaning toward SaaS or hybrid on-premise/SaaS solutions for eDiscovery. Craig Ball recently put out a very interesting article about how running eDiscovery technology in the cloud will be more efficient. Craig goes so far as to say, “cloud computing makes collection unnecessary.”
2011-11-02 eDiscovery Best Practices Guide From the New York State Bar That there is a dearth of standardized best practices for eDiscovery is an understatement. The corporate world is still fairly immature in its approach to information governance and eDiscovery. Thus, it is refreshing to see the recently published New York State Bar Association’s “Best Practices in eDiscovery in New York State and Federal Courts.” This publication is not necessarily the eDiscovery bible, but it does present some common sense, easy-to-follow guidelines for beginning to get one’s eDiscovery house in order.
2011-10-24 eDiscovery's Big Concerns: Social Media and The Cloud Earlier this month, I had a chance to participate in the panel, “Cloud, SharePoint, and Social Media: Discovery on the Next Data Frontier” at the LitCon 2011 show. My fellow panelists were Larry Briggi of FTI Consulting, Leigh Isaacs of Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe, and James Zucker, Esq. of Hogan Lovells. We’ve done this panel several times at conferences and on webinars and I learn something new every time. At the LitCon show, it was clear that social media is quickly becoming one of the biggest issues in eDiscovery. Mr. Zucker’s list of cases where social media is involved keeps growing.
2011-10-20 eDJ Launches Survey on eDiscovery and The Cloud Earlier this fall, eDJ conducted a survey on the usage of software-as-a-Service (SaaS) in eDiscovery. We reported that almost 70% of respondents are leaning toward using the cloud or a hybrid cloud/on-premise solution for eDiscovery. When we sliced this data a bit further, however, we found that only about 35% of corporate respondents are leaning toward cloud solutions for eDiscovery. Part of the explanation for this could be the fact that law firms have relied on hosted review for years now and are comfortable with cloud-based solutions. Corporations, on the other hand, tend to be very concerned with security and privacy issues and therefore want to exercise more control over data. eDJ has launched a new survey to dig deeper into the issues around the Cloud and eDiscovery.
2011-10-12 New EDJ Report Analyzes HP's Acquisition of Autonomy EDJ's report, "Analyzing HP's Acquisition of Autonomy" is now available. On August 18, 2011, H-P agreed to buy U.K. software firm Autonomy Corp. for just over $10 billion, a multiple of more than 10x Autonomy’s estimated revenue for next year. Those kinds of numbers grab attention – and they raise the inevitable scrutiny of all affected by the acquisition: customers, competitors, employees, former employees, and shareholders.
2011-10-11 eDiscovery As The Starting Channel for Content Analysis and Intelligence For quite some time, I’ve seen the eDiscovery market as an entry channel for broader information management solutions. Many of the expertise location and knowledge management applications of the early 2000’s found a home in the social network analysis function that can help in early case assessment and review. Machine learning and predictive analytics are helping make predictive coding and tagging a reality. And, we’re starting to evolve beyond just eDiscovery. Our recent information governance survey results showed that a majority of respondents believe that auto-classification is the future of information governance. Such solutions can help organizations with defensible disposition and storage management.
2011-09-29 Oracle / Autonomy Battle Taking Spotlight Off What Really Matters EDJ is in the midst of creating a research report analyzing the HP acquisition of Autonomy (look for further details on that next week). There is a lot of negative market reaction to the premium that HP is paying (over 10x Autonomy’s revenues), but not a lot of attention being paid to the real issues. The latest example is the escalating war of words between Oracle and Autonomy. Oracle claims that Autonomy was shopped to them and they turned down the offer due to the high price; Autonomy denies the claim. Oracle then releases the Powerpoint presentation slides used in the Autonomy meeting as proof of the claim. While the industry can’t divert its eyes from this tabloid-like news, the real issues at the heart of the acquisition get ignored.
2011-09-29 Addressing Social Media Collection and Personal Responsibility Recent changes to Facebook promise to let friends share content more easily and to allow users to follow the lives of others through subscriptions. The more freely information flows, the better, right? Based on the way FaceBook and Twitter usage has grown, that would certainly seem to be the case. As we pointed out in our information governance webinar with ViaLumina, Ltd., one of the primary value propositions of IG is creating business value through better usage of information. The other side of the IG value coin is risk management; the free flow of information through social media presents real risks – both for corporations and individuals. More and more client inquiries focus on collection of social media content. FINRA is one regulatory body that has state that social media content must be treated like any other electronic content. To that end, many archiving vendors now have ways to capture Twitter feeds and store alongside emails and instant messages. Depending on how active a Twitter user the employee is, this could result in a lot of data flowing into the archive. With the increasing usage of social media, organizations are looking to get ahead of the curve in terms of collecting it.
2011-09-20 Cloud-Based eDiscovery Solutions Here To Stay Get used to “the cloud” playing a major role in eDiscovery. Whether organizations source cloud-based storage, EDD processing and hosted review, or application via software-as-a-service (SaaS) delivery, the cloud is of interest to a large majority of consumers. While general market data shows that many information management professionals have concerns about SaaS and cloud-based services, the legal market – generally more conservative when it comes to cutting-edge technology – is a cloud pioneer.
2011-09-13 HP's Autonomy Acquisition Creating Opportunities for Others? In scanning through eDJ's syndication feed this morning, I came across an article about ProofPoint selecting ISYS's document filters for extraction of unstructured content in ProofPoint's email security, eDiscovery and compliance solutions. At first glance, this news seems to be of the "no big deal" variety. However, with the added context of two other nuggets of market news, this story may be an indicator of shifts in the market. One of the other nuggets is a big one - HP's planned acquisition of Autonomy; the other nugget is a small one and came through the rumor mill - that some of the early executives from the INSO document filters company (later acquired by Stellent, who in turn was acquired by Oracle) have joined ISYS.
2011-09-08 Where Should Information Governance Live?
2011-08-31 eDJ To Conduct Deeper Analysis of HP's Autonomy Acquisition The market is buzzing about the HP acquisition of Autonomy. Any time there is a transaction for over $10 billion, people tend to stand up and take notice. HP is essentially betting the farm on the continued success of Autonomy. But, multiple sources have raised questions about the Autonomy business as it’s currently advertised. Leslie Owens at Forrester points out that Autonomy’s IDOL (Intelligent Data Operating Layer) is not a true information management platform; Alan Pelz-Sharpe of RealStory Group calls Autonomy’s OEM business into question. And, I’ve been flooded by anonymous sources that raise issues with the amount of revenue Autonomy is making in various business lines, specifically its OEM business. David Cahill goes so far as to say HP should pay the $117 million penalty to call off the deal. Thus, we are hoping to talk to all kinds of folks – Autonomy executives, HP executives, Autonomy OEM customers, Autonomy application customers, etc – about their experiences and perspectives. eDJ’s goal is to present a pragmatic go-forward plan for eDiscovery professionals and to list out what it might take for HP to make the Autonomy acquisition a successful one.
2011-08-24 Take eDJ's SaaS Survey And Get A Free Report There is a ton of interest in Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) and cloud-based computing. Our industry relies on the cloud for both proactive information management (think hosted email archiving) and reactive eDiscovery services (think processing and hosted review). Attitudes toward SaaS and the cloud, though, have been hard to measure. There are camps that don’t trust the security of the cloud, just as there are camps that are quick to send data outside the four walls of the company and into the cheapest storage possible.
2011-08-23 Information Governance - From Theoretical To Actionable The last few posts in my information governance (IG) series have focused on the growing acceptance that IG is a defined model for managing information that companies are currently executing on, the fact that IG encompasses both structured data and unstructured content, and the state of relative immaturity in overall IG practices. The survey data is presenting a good news / bad news scenario: there is some agreement on what IG is and the component practices within it (records management, eDiscovery, archiving &storage, security, compliance, privacy, etc), but seemingly not a ton of proactive IG initiatives. This is not uncommon in emerging markets where unique challenges exists, e.g. getting huge volumes of diverse types of electronic information under control.
2011-08-18 Will HP Buy Autonomy?
2011-08-18 Information Governance Still An Immature Market
2011-08-12 Information Governance - Marrying Data And Content In looking through the data from our information governance survey, I sometimes find results that don’t necessarily match the reality of what goes on in practice. That is not necessarily surprising given the challenges of info governance, but it’s certainly interesting. One such data point from this survey is the fact that an overwhelming number of respondents – 83% - believe that the primary focus of information governance is the management of both unstructured content (e.g. Word processing documents) and structured data (e.g. databases). Seems like a “duh” finding, right?
2011-08-03 Is Information Governance on Your Radar? Is information governance on your radar screen? It’s certainly on ours. For the past several months, eDJ has been conducting an information governance survey with Barclay Blair of ViaLumina, Ltd. Analysis of the results is ongoing – the first report will be out in September and we’ll have a webinar on the topic September 15, 2011 at 1pm ET / 10am PT. The data is teaching us a lot about the topic; we’ll use the data to put some definition around the term and provide some recommendations on how to gain real value through information governance.
2011-07-27 Defining "Reasonable" in eDiscovery - Not Easy It seemed like every single presentation I was in at the Carmel Valley eDiscovery Retreat last week contained the term “reasonable.” Most speakers, myself included, had to position responses to questions as “do what is reasonable for your organization.” As a consultant, it feels like a cop-out to say something like that because it’s essentially saying, “it depends,” and that’s just such a typical consultant thing to say. Reasonableness, though, truly does depend. It depends on the organization and it depends on the matter.
2011-07-18 eDiscovery Retreat In Carmel - Reflections on Day #1 On its first day, the Carmel Valley eDiscovery Retreat has been a refreshing change of pace from most of the other legal technology shows. The location is both beautiful and serene; it’s most certainly not frenetic like LegalTech. The mix of attendees is a nice one – there are corporate folks, law firm partners and associates, vendors, and independent consultants. That mix provides for lively debate and a rich variety of perspectives.
2011-07-15 New eDJ Report - Managing eDiscovery as a Repeatable Business Process I’m happy to announce that a new report I authored with Kevin Esposito is now available on our site: Managing eDiscovery As a Repeatable Business Process. It’s been a hot topic lately as corporations seek to control costs and get out of the vicious cycle of reactive collections. Today, most organizations manage eDiscovery on a matter-by-matter basis, stuck in a reactive nightmare that plays over and over. This approach is both costly and risk-laden. Organizations do not have the time, internal skills or tools required to cull down collected data sets. This results in unnecessarily expensive third-party data processing and legal review. The matter-by-matter approach also leads to inconsistencies in how the same data is treated across matters. Multiple handoffs and increased movement of data from application to application and vendor to vendor raises the chances for spoliation and the potential for negative repercussions such as sanctions.
2011-07-07 eDiscovery Market Saturation? Not So Fast... Part of my job is to meet with the investment community (venture capital, private equity, investment banking) and talk shop about the state of the eDiscovery market. Lately, the same question keeps coming up over and over: “is the eDiscovery market saturated?” Certainly, I can understand the question; the Symantec acquisition of Clearwell has created renewed interest in our market. Clearwell got a very nice multiple…in case you didn’t know, the term “nice multiple” does not escape the ears of the investment community. But, there seems to be a perception that the market is saturated and there are no ankle biters on the radar or sure winners on the way up. While there are definitely some over-capitalized vendors out there desperate for more cash or an acquisition, I believe this market is not even close to saturated, and I’ll offer an example of why.
2011-06-27 eDiscovery As A Conduit To Information Management? I had a chance to sit down last week with Johannes Scholtes, Chief Strategy Officer at ZyLAB. I’ve followed ZyLAB for years now and was pleased to see the company so focused on the eDiscovery market. Too often, vendors in the information management world try to offer too much and solve too many problems. That leads to confusion on the part of prospects as to exactly what they need to buy. Now, ZyLAB is not abandoning the broader information management market, but the company is focusing its efforts around what it can sell today – eDiscovery applications.
2011-06-14 Real World SharePoint Collection Stories? Microsoft’s SharePoint has achieved significant market traction over the past decade – various research studies show the level of organizations using SharePoint ranging from 50% - over 90%. Clearly, SharePoint is a force to be reckoned with. The eDiscovery market took notice of SharePoint in the last few years and we’ve seen archiving and collection solutions become available. While SharePoint has appeared in real cases, it has not reached critical mass as an eDiscovery issue just yet.
2011-06-09 Dawn of the Predictive Coding Wars? No sooner did Recommind announce that it had patented predictive coding was there an article in about the unhappy reaction of Recommind’s competitors. With the blogosphere chirping, I thought it a good idea to weigh in on this news. I read the Recommind press release, which states that the patent covers “systems and methods for iterative computer-assisted document analysis and review. This patent gives Recommind, its customers and its partners exclusive rights to use, host and sell systems and processes for iterative, computer-expedited document review.” It is not hard to see why competitors are reacting defensively to this release – it would appear at first glance that Recommind would be the only company allowed to provide predictive coding software.
2011-05-31 Observations From AccessData's User Conference I spoke at a session of the AccessData user conference in Las Vegas recently. The trip was great, with the exception of losing $500 at the craps table. I love going to user conferences because I get a chance to chat with real folks practicing real corporate eDiscovery. Most can’t talk on the record, but I get a chance to hear the things they are really trying to do – real-life stuff. I was able to have some good chats after my session on eDiscovery trends. Interestingly, I heard some very similar themes from some very diverse users.
2011-05-20 Rapid Reaction #1 - Symantec Buys Clearwell Slowly, but surely, for a source here and a source there, the seeds of a rumor were planted into my brain over the past few weeks. People kept asking whether it was true that Symantec was about to buy Clearwell Systems. I know better than to answer those questions; sure, I could ask my contacts at either company, but they wouldn’t be able to comment. And, having been an analyst over a decade now, I know better than to believe every acquisition rumor I hear. In the past year, I’ve had folks practically confirm that Autonomy is buying Open Text and that Oracle is buying Autonomy. I don’t believe the rumors until I see the announcement. And so it is – Symantec buys Clearwell Systems for $390 million.
2011-05-16 Autonomy Buys Iron Mountain Digital Assets The market has been awaiting word on where the assets of Iron Mountain Digital would end up. Previously, we speculated who the potential buyers might be and what the future might hold for Iron Mountain Digital. We now know the answer – Autonomy is purchasing the assets for $380 million. That’s not a huge multiple on the revenues of Iron Mountain Digital, but it’s still a big acquisition number in our space. Now we must wonder if this is good news, bad news, or something in between.
2011-05-05 Managing eDiscovery As Another Business Process Software vendors tend to be out a bit in front of a market in order to be well-positioned to capitalize when customer requirements mature. That’s why it was interesting to see Greg Buckle’s report from the Symantec Vision conference that eDiscovery is a major part of Symantec’s strategy going forward. The company is combining eDiscovery, data loss prevention, and encryption in an offering it defines as information governance. Other large software vendors couple eDiscovery offerings with content and records management, storage, and search offerings. From a market perspective, the reality is that eDiscovery is recognized as a major component of information governance. This creates some pragmatic challenges for enterprises that want to address eDiscovery challenges today, though.
2011-04-28 Where Does Iron Mountain Digital's Future Lie? Recently, Iron Mountain announced that it might sell of its digital business unit and focus on its traditional physical storage strengths. Having watched Iron Mountain unfurl its transition into the digital world over the past decade, it’s not surprising that the company is retrenching. It’s not easy for a large physical storage company to become a software company. While many (including me) thought that the Iron Mountain brand name might translate well into the digital world, ultimately, the company was not able to turn acquisitions of small digital businesses (Stratify and Mimosa Systems) into a viable digital competitor.
2011-04-14 Where Are the eDiscovery SIs? There are many reasons that the large SIs have not moved into eDiscovery with full force. First, eDiscovery requires legal advice. Plain and simple, there is too much potential liability for a large consulting firm to come in and tell a company what it is “reasonable” and “good faith” for eDiscovery efforts. Second, there is not necessarily a large, multi-million dollar software deployment that will always go along with eDiscovery. The Accentures of the world are used to dropping off a bus of consultants to spend months deployment enterprise software. In the eDiscovery world, consumers can spend $80K on a collection and processing appliance. Hard to convince a company to spend millions when it can spend less than $100K.
2011-04-07 The Importance of Critical Analysis in Reporting eDiscovery News Last week, an unfortunate incident occurred in our industry: A blog post containing inaccurate information rocketed through the internet, creating its own misinformation and unrest. A blog post from Dominic Jaar of KPMG Canada implied that Judge Shira Scheindlin was calling for the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Agency to discontinue its use of a major eDiscovery industry application. The incident is unfortunate because the facts were not correctly reported initially and because the ever increasing use of re-quoted blogs, tweets and other social media resulted in widespread repetition of the error. Many of our readers have asked for our perspective on what happened, so we did some investigating with the principals and have our own opinions on the incident.
2011-03-29 Changing Attitudes on Predictive Coding? Lately, it seems like predictive coding is all over the eDiscovery blogosphere. The most recent example is Ben Kerschberg’s entry at law and technology blog. When we wrote about the topic last fall, a majority of readers believed that predictive coding was not defensible. I took a new look at the data on our poll question and found that attitudes are evolving.
2011-03-22 Connecting Legal Hold Notification With Content Lock-Down Greg Buckles’ recent post on legal hold notices reaching eDiscovery platforms hinted at something that I believe many organizations will be doing this year – connecting legal hold process management with execution of collection and preservation activities. While this would seem an obvious and not-so-revolutionary next step, it’s one that is not easy to implement and not necessarily specifically called for in any rules governing the practice of eDiscovery. Thus, I sense hesitation on the part of some practitioners. But, I believe the process management and IT benefits of making the connection will ultimately start to win out this year.
2011-03-08 eDiscovery Gets Prime Time Coverage in New York Times A recent New York Times article gave eDiscovery some primetime coverage. The focus of the article was more macro-level: given the software tools to automate aspects of document review, are we ultimately creating less high-paying jobs for lawyers? As expected of a mainstream press article on eDiscovery, only broad strokes were sketched. The article does propose a very good and timely question. The elimination of high-paying jobs could have a potentially devastating impact on our economy. From my perspective, what was missing from the article was the potential for software tools that replace document reviewers to create another wave of high-paying jobs (that are different because they aren’t “lawyer” jobs).
2011-03-03 Content Analytics - The Heart of ECA After watching the IBM Watson debut on Jeopardy, I got to thinking more and more about computer intelligence. I’ve been watching the content analytics space for a long time and have seen up close both the potential for analytics to change the world and the skepticism with which many humans view analytics. When I began covering eDiscovery, it seemed to me that there was finally a market in which content analytics could make a real impact and find some traction. This is especially true in Early Case Assessment (ECA).
2011-02-25 A View of Corporate eDiscovery From the Trenches One of the challenges in the eDiscovery market is the need for organizations to keep best practices to themselves. There are few organizations willing to publicly share the details of eDiscovery programs. True, one of the reasons for this is the fact that most eDiscovery programs are very immature. But, the primary reason is risk control – there is very little benefit to going public with eDiscovery practices and a lot of downside (e.g. losing the ability to argue undue burden because the whole world knows about your search capabilities). Thus, I was very happy when I found someone from a top telecomm company willing to share some lessons learned (while I can’t share name or company name, I can share some very interesting knowledge nuggets)
2011-02-18 Do Attachments Need To Be Produced With Email Messages? One of the things we do as analysts is take inquiries from readers, typically either in a half hour call or via an email response. Recently, a good inquiry came in, but there was no contact information to send an answer to, so I thought it would be a good idea to answer it here (with the hope that the answer gets to the person that had the question). The question read, “If we have a corporate email solution that strips attachments from emails and replaces them with download links, what are our e-discovery responsibilities? Do we need to be able to produce the attachment, or just the email with the links?”
2011-02-15 The eDiscoveryJournal 2011 Research Agenda The hope is that 2011 is a watershed year in our industry. We plan to be there, writing about things that matter most to eDiscovery professionals. That’s why we need your feedback on the research we have underway. Let us know if the topics matter to you, or if there are topics we’re missing that you would like to see research on
2011-02-08 eDiscovery Phoenixes Rising? Sometimes, the best buzz at an event is whispered under the radar. It even takes a couple of days for those whispers to come together, get processed by the brain, and become a coherent thought. Such is the case with LegalTech NY 2011. Now several days removed from the show and the litany of meetings over three days, some new thoughts are bubbling in my brain and I’m wondering if we are watching some eDiscovery phoenixes rise from the ashes.
2011-02-02 Barry Murphy's LegalTech Day 3 - A Positive Ending LegalTech Day 1 was a bit disappointing, LegalTech Day 2 was an improvement, and LegalTech Day 3 left me with a much better taste in my mouth. Reflecting back on the show, there were some very positive signs for the market. Vendors reported great booth traffic and, more importantly, talk of real purchasing budgets. As the show went on, there was more real talk about managing eDiscovery as a business process and the business intelligence necessary to make process management smooth and efficient. And thankfully, there was less hype about ECA and the could this time around (though I did sense some cynicism about the fact that everyone was talking about predictive coding).
2011-02-01 Barry Murphy's LegalTech Day 2 - Improvement If my first day at LegalTech2011 was a bit of a let-down, Day 2 saw enough of a recovery to make me feel better about the industry. Don’t get me wrong – I still lament the fact that we have a long way to go. I guess I’m just naturally impatient, when instead I should be glad that this industry keeps us all employed. The big messages of the day were more along the pragmatic lines that I like: managing discovery as a process; taking control of information governance. Unfortunately, the information governance messages don’t all have a lot of meat behind them.
2011-02-01 Barry Murphy's LegalTech Day 1 - A Bit Of A Let-Down It’s been a busy first day at LegalTech. Between running around the floor, taking vendor meetings, and try to say hello to everyone I know, they day has flown by. As I sit in my hotel room, I can’t help but wrestle with the feeling of a bit of a letdown on day one of LegalTech.
2011-01-28 Launching into LegalTech 2011 A client recently asked me what kinds of themes will dominate this year’s Legal Tech show. In an earlier post, Expectations for LegalTech 2011, I pointed out some of what I think we’ll see at the show, but what I didn’t do in the last post was address what I think will be the overall theme in 2001 – a focus on the practice of eDiscovery. Yes, I believe we are now actually moving up the maturity curve and discussions will focus on real issues and how real solutions to problems. There will still be a lot of hype around issues du jour, but that hype will take a back seat to the very real case studies that many companies are now willing to talk about.
2011-01-07 Expectations For LegalTech 2011 As we head into “LegalTech season,” I would normally expect some hyperbole around not-so-well defined terms like “ECA” or “the cloud.” And while there is certain to be some marketing hype around the show, it feels like this year will feature more pragmatism. I expect to see more messaging around actual benefits that solutions have delivered and less “generic” messaging about how many additional features a platform or service has implemented.
2010-12-30 eDiscoveryJournal Reflects on The Year 2010 In early 2010, I said it would be the year of Early Case Assessment (ECA). Thankfully, the eDiscovery world was about much more than ECA; this was the year that corporations took a meaningful step up the maturity ladder. This is not to say that there isn’t work to be done. On the contrary – the first movement up the learning curve was a baby step, but a step in the right direction nonetheless.
2010-12-23 Analysis of eDiscovery Ownership Issues We’ve been writing about the issue of “ownership” in eDiscovery lately and it’s prompting some good discussions. Earlier posts about general ownership of eDiscovery and ownership of document review have led to various debates such how to best implement eDiscovery processes and solutions within corporations and the potential change of business models for law firms. Only one thing is clear – that there is little clarity in our market. These debates will continue to rage for near-term because most organizations are still fairly low on the eDiscovery learning curve.
2010-12-14 Who "Owns" eDiscovery? Clients often bring up the issue of creating a business case for eDiscovery because it’s such a difficult activity. Despite the fact that solutions on the market can help save a lot of money, it’s hard to justify spending hundreds of thousands of dollars upfront to address eDiscovery costs. It shouldn’t be as hard as it is, but such is the grim reality in the complex world of corporate eDiscovery. I believe that much of the difficulty comes from the lack of “ownership” for eDiscovery.
2010-11-30 The Interface Paradigm Centralized control of information is at the heart of information governance. In many ways, though, centralization runs counter to the realities of the working world where information must be distributed globally across a variety of devices and applications. The amount of information we create is overwhelming and the velocity with which that information moves increases daily. To think that an organization can find one system in which to manage all its information is preposterous.
2010-11-24 In-Place Preservation - A Workable Solution? The clear trend is that corporations are taking control of eDiscovery and bringing functions on the left side of the EDRM – identification, collection, preservation, and elements of processing, analysis, and review – in house. The goal is a more proactive approach to an inherently reactive process. But, the evolution is still a slow one. Inevitably, most corporations still take a matter-by-matter approach to eDiscovery.
2010-11-18 eDiscovery Forcing Change of Business Model For Law Firms? Analysts are told they are crazy all the time (and in some cases, it’s probably true). Years ago, I suggested that the business models of law firms would have to change because of the realities of eDiscovery. Most people I knew told me I was crazy. I even knew some general counsel that told me that if they were still paying hourly fees to their law firms in five years (this was circa 2005), that they would have failed in their jobs. Meanwhile, the law firm folks I talked to said it didn’t matter what corporations did – good law firms can command the hourly rates that they want. The recent Fulbright and Jaworski Litigation Trends Survey results pointed to an increase in fixed fee engagements, so it looks like the business model is, in fact, changing.
2010-11-15 A Follow-Up On Predictive Coding Our earlier post on predictive coding potentially being the future of document review included a poll on whether or not predictive coding is defensible. The results so far are somewhat surprising in that the majority of folks believe predictive coding is not defensible. I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised; the legal industry is slow to change (and for good reason – it makes sense to proceed with caution when going into unchartered territory).
2010-10-28 Is Predictive Coding the Future of Document Review? Recently, Recommind briefed eDiscoveryJournal on the software vendor’s predictive coding. In the Recommind context, predictive coding starts with a sub-set of data (derived by various techniques such as concept searching, phrase identification, keyword searching, metadata filters, etc) and users review and code the seed data set for factors such as responsiveness, issue, and privilege. Once that review is complete, the user can hit a “train” button that tells the Axcelerate application to identify conceptually similar documents based on the attributes of the first set of coding. Recommind refers to this as machine learning – the engine learns from the document coding conducted by humans; and vice-versa, with predictive coding the human reviewers also learn from the suggested relevant documents that are returned by the machine. Basically, it is a process where reviewers are presented with more relevant documents, more often and see much less non-relevant document that slow down the process of completing review. There are checks built in so that case managers can continue to review sets of potentially low relevance documents. If any of those documents are in fact responsive, they are re-coded and the system can apply this learning back to the rest of the corpus.
2010-10-21 eDJ Perspective on Fulbright & Jaworski 7th Annual Litigation Trends Survey As always, there were some interesting tidbits in the Fulbright & Jaworski Annual Litigation Trends Survey (this one was the 7th annual report). The report covers a lot of ground including trends for fee arrangement, the tactics for handling international disputes, the types of matters organizations face the most (and the different ways each type of matter impacts litigation costs), and eDiscovery. At eDJ, we looked for the nuggets of data about eDiscovery that are most interesting and compelling – there were severa
2010-10-14 eDJ Perspective on AIIM's State of ECM Report The AIIM State of the ECM Industry 2010 report is out and I read it to see what kinds of insights it might offer about the eDiscovery market. ECM – or enterprise content management – gives organizations the ability to more efficiently manage unstructured content. ECM first came on the scene to solve mundane problems like version control, to put workflow around content-driven processes, and to better facilitate knowledge management (giving knowledge workers the tools to be more efficient). When the FRCP amendments took effect in 2006, the expectation was that ECM could ultimately solve the problem. At eDJ, we still believe that ECM will play a huge role in identification, collection, and preservation initiatives, it will not be the end-all, be-all for eDiscovery. That said, eDiscovery is a huge driver for ECM.
2010-10-13 IBM's Acquisition of PSS Systems - A Sign of Things to Come? IBM announced the acquisition of PSS Systems, setting into motion what might be a round of consolidation in the eDiscovery market. I get asked all the time why the software giants haven’t bought eDiscovery vendors and the answer is typically that they are waiting until there are some internal winners in the market. In the market for preservation management, the main vendors have been PSS and Exterro. IBM must have decided that it was important enough to get some of the big clients that PSS brings to the table.
2010-10-08 eDJ Perspective on Sedona Conference Commentary on Principles of Proportionality The Sedona Conference released its Commentary on Proportionality in Electronic Discovery, available for download here. Proportionality is an interesting topic; determining what is good faith and reasonable is challenging. The Sedona Conference Working Group provides some very good analysis in this document. I’d like to add some perspective on what this means for organizations working on eDiscovery programs.
2010-10-05 Evidence of Maturation in eDiscovery Market? The Cowen Group recently put out some very interesting research showing that 87 of the AmLaw 200 law firms have eDiscovery practice groups. The next step in Cowen’s research is to look more granularly at what those groups are doing, investments those groups are making in technology and people, and the level of authority and traction the groups get within the firms. I think this statistic points to the beginning of some maturation in the eDiscovery practice realm. While one might say that the real sign of maturation will be that close to half of Fortune 1000 companies have eDiscovery practice groups, it is really the law firms where this trend should begin.
2010-09-20 eDiscovery Software and Services - A Perfect Marriage? eDiscovery is one of those markets that feels like it fits into the traditional software world, but has enough idiosyncrasies to require expert services. Those services have usually come from law firms, EDD service providers, or consulting companies. Such companies offer experienced litigators, forensic examiners, project managers, and other eDiscovery-related experienced professionals that are critical to executing processes correctly.
2010-09-15 Don't Forget About The Role of Storage in eDiscovery There is a lot of focus on software applications in eDiscovery – ECA, identification and collection, legal hold. Not to diminish the importance of these applications, but often lost in the hype is the critical importance of the storage hardware and software that support these eDiscovery applications.
2010-09-08 Can Addressing eDiscovery Lead to Better Litigation Win Rates? In reading the morning’s headlines, an interesting statistic stood out to me - 51% of lawyers have lost a case in the last 3 months alone because of eDiscovery problems. The source of this data is not clear, but it came through the Twitter feed of Symantec’s Enterprise Vault team. Taking the stat at face value, it’s astounding – eDiscovery problems as the cause of a lost case. There is something very disheartening about any case being lost on anything other than its merits.
2010-09-01 Earlier Early Case Assessment (ECA)? One of the things I hear in vendor briefings more and more is early case assessment (ECA) happening even earlier. This can be referred to as “very early case assessment” or “ECA in the wild” or “in-place ECA.” At the end of the day, it’s all about moving ECA forward to happen in-line with identification and collection so that organizations can save money, make decisions earlier, and simplify the eDiscovery process.
2010-08-26 What To Expect This Fall In eDiscovery The end of summer is bittersweet. Bitter because we move out of relaxation mode and back into high-stress mode. Sweet because business activities really heat up as everyone gears up to have a big fourth quarter. What can we expect in the eDiscovery market this fall? This article lists the things to watch out for over the next four months.
2010-08-20 Expanding eDiscovery Solution Features Across the EDRM eDiscoveryJournal has noted the consolidation taking place in the eDiscovery market. Altegrity acquired Kroll; AccessData acquired Summation; Autonomy acquired CA’s Information Governance division. Rumors persist that Autonomy will buy OpenText (though these rumors point out that Autonomy has assembled a $1 billion war chest for the acquisition and the OpenTex market capitalization is $2.12 billion…rumors can sometimes be just that – rumors). Often overshadowed by the consolidation hype are the moves that eDiscovery vendors make to extend functionality organically.
2010-08-12 Is Archiving the Path ECM Vendors Take to eDiscovery? When eDiscovery first hit the scene, many of us in the analyst community predicted that enterprise content management (ECM) vendors would ultimately be the big solution providers that win out. It seemed like records management would be the right way to proactively manage information for eDiscovery. But, a funny thing happened on the way to forum – ECM hasn’t yet won out. In fact, no one category of solution has yet to emerge as the big eDiscovery winner. But, a recent Greg Buckles comment on my article about eDiscovery technologies being applied to other use-cases really got me thinking about how our market is evolving.
2010-08-10 Taking eDiscovery Technology to New Use-Cases It’s always great to hear about interesting use-cases for eDiscovery technology, especially when those use-cases prove out benefits that go beyond just eDiscovery. During a recent briefing with Index Engines, the company told me that many customers are using the product for tape remediation initiatives. Essentially, these customers know that there is a ton of information sitting on backup tapes somewhere. This information is both costly to store (the tapes have to live somewhere) and risky – there is the risk that the tapes will have to be restored for eDiscovery (also not necessarily cheap).
2010-08-04 The Major Pains Associated With eDiscovery eDiscovery has, in many ways, made it to the mainstream. Thanks to email mismanagement and lack of corporate ethics, our market is in the news on a virtually daily basis. It therefore surprises some that so few organizations have taken significant measures to address eDiscovery. I did an informal poll of some clients to understand why and got some interesting responses. For the 15 or so clients I pinged on this issue, cost and IT issues were the major pains.
2010-07-29 Competition Heats Up In The Legal Hold Application Market Legal hold is one of the hottest eDiscovery topics of 2010. First, we saw legal hold applications featured prominently at LegalTech in New York – it seemed like every vendors was offering some kind of solution for preservation. Next, we had the Montreal Pension plan opinion, aka “Zubulake Revisisted,” in which Judge Shira Scheindlin hammered home the need for companies to have a written notification place in plan to let custodians know they have an obligation to preserve information. After that, we got a lot of pundits (eDJ included) questioning whether the sanction avoidance benefit of legal hold applications really exists – too many clients were saying that the sanctions were not really scaring them into action. And now, I am beginning to see a bit of a bifurcation in the legal hold applications market – vendors that offer a “complete” solution for the notification and tracking process as well as identification, preservation, and collection and those that offer a solution more targeted at just managing the notification and tracking process.
2010-07-29 The Google / City of LA Problem Will Not Hinder Cloud Computing Adoption There are some that think that Google’s problems with the implementation of email for the City of Los Angeles will be a setback for cloud computing and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) vendors. However, this is not going to kill cloud computing. Rather, it’s going to put the focus on aspects of cloud computing that are tricky and give Google’s competitors kill points and issues to build their marketing around.
2010-07-22 Increasing Demand For Cloud-Based Archiving (And Hybrid On-Premise / Cloud) The archiving market is picking up steam, driven by a huge interest in cloud-based solutions. Cloud-based archiving providers offer virtually all the features of on-premise archiving – eDiscovery search interface; end-user access to email; compliance monitoring interface; storage management; legal hold. About the only thing cloud-based vendors don’t offer is mailbox management (stubbing)…and with the introduction of Microsoft Exchange 2010 to the market, the need for mailbox management is virtually dead. Still, though, there are valid concerns with cloud-based archiving – security; location of data; encryption; regulatory or legal requirements to store certain data on-premise; speed of document retrieval.
2010-07-14 eDiscovery Buying Criteria While there are some common trends, every company is different and the disconnect between legal and IT is so large that gauging eDiscovery purchasing habits is complex.
2010-06-30 Native Production and Redaction In eDiscovery There is a need to ensure that the redaction methodology used will work for the format of data in question, and to make sure that the redaction will actually make the private text both non-visible and non-searchable. In order to select the right redaction methodology, though, organizations must know what information they have, what format it’s in, and what elements are private or privileged. That takes planning and really requires that a proactive eDiscovery initiative (and hopefully infrastructure) be in place.
2010-06-24 Examining The Need For Standardized Collection Workflows Collection tools are sophisticated enough now that organizations should be able to centrally manage collection efforts for 90% of what needs to be preserved. There will be the need to take forensic images of certain local machines, but a good information management or information governance program should cover most organizations and make the collection process smoother, more efficient, and defensible.
2010-06-23 Optimized Keyword Selection - Another Component of ECA? When lawyers begin looking at what keywords are important for identifying potentially responsive information, the process seems fairly straightforward. Look at the key issues; brainstorm on concepts, words, and synonyms; select the keywords; conduct the collection. Tracking this process, however, can be cumbersome. Imagine trying to explain how you generated a keyword list based on several hours of brainstorming without detailed notes or a virtual recording of the brainstorming sessions. Optimizing keyword selection can help to make a cumbersome process more transparent and scientific.
2010-06-17 Analysis of the AccessData CT Summation Merger AccessData announced it will merge with CT Summation to form a single company, AccessData Group, LLC. The goal of merging the two companies is to deliver a solution capable of addressing all phases of the EDRM model. While the newly formed solution will touch the full spectrum of the EDRM, AccessData Group will face stiff competition from best-of-breed point solution providers, as well as larger enterprise software vendors, in a market where corporations are not necessarily decided on whether an integrated solution or a point solution is the right choice.
2010-06-11 Is GM An eDiscovery Ostrich? GM has been asked to preserve all electronic communications instead of deleting them in accordance with its 60-day retention policy. A 60-day retention policy with no backup program in place is just another example of companies instituting retention programs that don't help the business and that virtually ignore good eDiscovery practices.
2010-06-09 Even More Consolidation in the eDiscovery Market There is more news of market consolidation with the announcement that Autonomy will buy CA’s Information Governance division. CA slowly built the IG group with the purchase of iLumin in 2005 and then MDY in 2006. That gave CA the archiving and records management capabilities necessary to have the information governance foundation. Sadly, CA was just never the right fit and the information governance message was perhaps a little bit ahead of its time. Autonomy, meanwhile, doubled-down on eDiscovery with laser focus and has emerged as one of the most successful companies in the industry due to that commitment. It now has even stronger records management capabilities, even if it also has to deal with supporting a lot of duplicate technology.
2010-06-08 What Might Kroll Acquisition Mean to eDiscovery Market? In some further eDiscovery market shifting, Kroll Inc was acquired by Altegrity this week. Kroll’s Ontrack division is one of the leading providers of eDiscovery solutions. It’s no secret that Kroll was for sale (it wasn’t a great fit with parent company Marsh McLennen) and that the price was lower than shareholders would have liked. Most of the pundits out there seem to think that Altegrity is a good landing spot for Kroll. I don’t disagree, but I do wonder what the future holds for Kroll Ontrack, specifically.
2010-06-03 Social Media Creeps Into eDiscovery One trend bubbling up recently is the need to control social networking content (e.g. Twitter, FaceBook, and LinkedIn) for compliance and/or eDiscovery requirements. The stories indicating this trend come from both the solutions side and the real-word side of things.
2010-06-01 FTI Throws Its Hat In the SharePoint Collection & Preservation Ring FTI Consulting has joined the ranks of companies offering a solution specifically targeted at collection and preservation of Microsoft SharePoint information.
2010-05-28 eDiscovery Lessons Learned From Piper Jaffray Sanction In May, 2010, Piper Jaffray & Company was sanctioned $700K for failure to preserve emails. The company was fined $1.65 million in 2002 for the same issue. At that time, the company implemented new archiving procedures and software in order to ensure that the same mistake would not occur. I take two things out of this story. First, it could be that the lower fine for this infraction is due to recognition that a good faith effort to retain information was in place. And second, archiving technology by itself is not enough to ensure that all necessary information can be preserved.
2010-05-25 Getting Started on Retention Policies Since the amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP) went into effect in December 2006, organizations have struggled to effectively manage information in a manner that makes eDiscovery efficient. There was an assumption at the time that we could just extend records management policies to the rest of our information and solve the problem that way. But, records management is complex; corporate file plans are often well over 1,000 categories deep – how can employees be expected to classify every single document, email, or other information asset into a file plan category? The key is to make reasonable efforts to set retention policies for all content, and let records be classified by the experts into the file plan.
2010-05-21 eDiscovery Lessons Learned from the BP Crisis There is a great article from Christy Burke of Burke & Company about the eDiscovery disaster that could arise from the BP oil spill. Christy's article is detailed and comprehensive - a must-read for anyone wondering about the eDiscovery implications for the broader market and how to plan for some of those issues. From an information governance perspective, there are some quick takeaways I'd like to list (because this is yet another example of how proactive planning could avert the potential eDiscovery nightmares that can arise from extreme situations like this one):
2010-05-18 Market Numbers On Content Analytics And eDiscovery AIIM's recent report on content analytics and the use cases for it points out good news for the eDiscovery market - more adoption of eDiscovery tools and higher spending in the next 12 months.
2010-05-14 Reflections on The EDRM Kick-Off Meeting I spent the better part of this past week at the EDRM kickoff meeting in St. Paul, MN. For those of you that aren’t familiar with it, EDRM stands for electronic discovery reference model. The goal of EDRM is to “develop guidelines and standards for e-discovery consumers and providers…helping e-discovery consumers and providers reduce the cost, time and manual work associated with e-discovery.” A lot of great thought leadership has emerged from EDRM, including the well-accepted reference model that provides insight into all the activities that need to happen during eDiscovery.
2010-05-12 How Defensible Collection Fits In Your Information Governance Strategy Conducting defensible eDiscovery collections can be challenging, but will pay off in both the near- and long-terms. What any organization does depends upon their specific maturity level and requirements. In general, though, organizations that want to take control of eDiscovery collection should:
2010-05-06 Where Are the eDiscovery Sanctions With Real Teeth? There were a number of cases in the last decade that most of us thought would be the impetus organizations needed to take eDiscovery and information governance seriously. Two of the high-profile cases were the Zubulake case and the Morgan Stanley case. In the Zubulake case, $20.2 million in punitive damages were awarded to employee of UBS Warburg partly because the jury was instructed to believe that non-preserved evidence likely contained incriminating information. In the Morgan Stanley case, $1.45 billion was awarded to Ronald Perelman after a judge issued a default judgment against Morgan Stanley due to eDiscovery failures. Again, the assumption was that non-preserved evidence was assumed to be incriminating. Since then, there have been many other cases involving sanctions, but with many of the cases, the actual sanctions don’t grab the attention of large organizations.
2010-05-04 eDiscovery Buyers Must Be Diligent In A Hot Market There is a definite sense of excitement in the eDiscovery market. Corporations are beginning to deploy tools for in-house collection and preservation and early case assessment. Vendors are seeing revenue increases and strong growth numbers. M & A activity is on the rise, witnessed by Iron Mountain’s acquisition of Mimosa and Doar’s acquisition of Inference Data. It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement and think we’re on the cusp of solving the eDiscovery problem. But, now is also a good time to make sure that due diligence is served when implementing processes and tools to address eDiscovery.
2010-04-30 Want to Know More About Cloud Computing? Read This... The four key parts that both on-premise and cloud-based models share: consumption (how end-users interact with the appliation); creation (how developers build the application); orchestration (how parts of the application are pulled from the app server); and infrastructure (where key elements of the app like servers and storage live).
2010-04-28 Hybrid software and services solutions in eDiscovery Hybrid is a popular term right about now, and not just because those kinds of cars are considered environmentally friendly. Rather, we are seeing an increase in the number of solutions that are a hybrid combination of on-premise software and software-as-a-service (SaaS).
2010-04-23 Lots of Missing eDiscovery Vendors at AIIM As AIIM Expo comes to an end, I’m left feeling like the eDiscovery market is on the precipice of becoming a critical part of the information management market, but is not quite there just yet. There is an excitement and buzz about eDiscovery at the conference, but it is not quite yet a crescendo. Yes, there was an eDiscovery pavilion and we got to meet some cool vendors exhibiting there – Catalyst Repository Systems, El Fresko Technologies, iConect Development, Kroll Ontrack, and Planet Data Solutions. But, many of the mainstream eDiscovery vendors were not at the show at all, either as exhibitors or attendees. And, of the large software vendors present – EMC, IBM, Oracle, and Microsoft, eDiscovery was not an overtly featured capability at their booths. There was even a partner pavilion for Microsoft and the only partners talking about eDiscovery were archiving partners. As we’ve pointed out in other entries, there is a big opportunity for creating eDiscovery solutions for SharePoint; it’s a shame no one is getting out ahead of the curve on that.
2010-04-21 The AIIM Crowd Moves Slowly Into eDiscovery
2010-04-16 More Evidence of eDiscovery Market on The Rise On the heels of my writing about the perfect storm brewing in eDiscovery comes good news for all in the market. Recent survey results from the Cowen Group indicate a rise in jobs, plans to purchase software, and plans to purchase outsourced services. The good news is that the data points to wins all around in the market. Organizations benefit by taking proactive steps to reduce the cost of eDiscovery. Software and service providers benefit from increased revenue. And eDiscovery professionals benefit from increased work options and better employment.
2010-04-13 A Perfect Storm Brewing in eDiscovery Enough has happened – FRCP Amendments, precedents, scandals – for organizations to understand that it’s time to act vis-a-vis eDiscovery. Tools are evolving to provide real, actual value (despite the fact they still have developmental challenges). And, with an economic recovery, there will be money to spend on addressing the challenges.
2010-04-09 Another Look at Forensic Collection I had a chance to speak with Lance Sloves, a Director at Computer Forensic Services, Inc. about forensic collection. He points out that, first, it’s fairly rare for any organization to have well-rounded or proper policies and processes in place for good, defensible collection – that is just the way it is. Second, few organizations possess the expertise in proper data and forensic collection that is required in today’s eDiscovery market. The fact is that many litigators are getting smarter and smarter about collection – and some can smell blood when something has not been properly vetted. And I’ve yet to meet an IT manager who relishes the thought of being an expert witness.
2010-04-08 Come Meet eDiscoveryJournal at AIIM Expo April 20-22 eDiscoveryJournal will be at the AIIM Expo from April 20-22, 2010. The conference will highlight how information management professionals can take leadership roles in eDiscovery initiatives.
2010-04-05 A Closer Look at "Forensic Collection"
2010-04-01 eDiscovery: The Transparency Police? Transparency – it’s a word we hear often now. Merriam- Webster defines the term transparent as being “free from pretense or deceit,” “easily detected or seen through,” or “readily understood.” The Obama Administration talks about transparency and government; about how government should be accountable and able to share information about its operations with the public. The FRCP Amendments aim to hold organizations accountable for transparency, for being able to share information when required. And, we at eDiscoveryJournal aim to enforce transparency within an industry shrouded in complexity (and peppered with non-standardized terms and phrases).
2010-03-24 What Does In-House eDiscovery Mean? o, what does it mean to take eDiscovery in-house? The way I see it, the movement in-house consists of the acquisition of tools for information management, identification, collection, preservation, processing, and some element of review and analysis (the left side of the EDRM) and active participation in managing the cost of review.
2010-03-22 What is Information Governance? Information governance is simply a new perspective - a conservative one - on information management. It's about managing the risk inherent in creating and using information assets within an organization.
2010-03-15 SharePoint Presents Very Real eDiscovery Challenges Microsoft SharePoint provides many business benefits and its usage has exploding and is growing further. But, as is often the case with new, exciting business tools, eDiscovery is an afterthought and becomes very challenging. It's only a matter of time before the challenges with forensically collecting SharePoint information hit the headlines. There are tools out there to address SharePoint eDiscovery management, but each take different approaches and buyers must beware.
2010-03-10 Another Perspective on the Role of Automation in eDiscovery In his earlier journal entries – Inside of Automated Review Part 1 and Part 2 – Greg Buckles explored the practice of using content analysis software to enable a level of automate for document review. The growing trend to let software create clusters of content by concept and other analytics in an effort to decrease massive review costs in a good indication that automation is here to stay. Thankfully, I’m seeing more and more indications that content analytics are becoming accepted in the information governance community. At LegalTech, I participated in a panel and one of the questions I received was how organizations can better proactively manage information in order to make eDiscovery as efficient as possible. My answer was to use auto-classification to go through legacy content and identify potential records, knowledge assets, and other retention-worthy content. This answer was the topic of debate, with some folks thinking that auto-classification will never stand up in court or is simply not advanced enough to work. Others feel that there is no way to effectively classify information manually and therefore auto-classification is inevitable.
2010-03-04 More Evidence of Scale and Performance Wars Anyone evaluating eDiscovery software is going to have a hard time finding a way to compare tools in an apples-to-apples fashion. And, even if we are to know how many servers these vendors are using to get the numbers they report, we know nothing about the make-up of the data corpus. It’s very different to process a bunch of Word documents than it is to process TBs of PST files.
2010-03-03 The Scale and Performance Wars Begin As IT becomes more and more involved in eDiscovery software purchasing, the scalability and performance of tools will be important decision criteria. But, when every vendor claims to be the most scalable on the market, what should buyers do?
2010-02-25 Zubulake Revisited - Slaying The Ostriches Any organization that ignores information lifecycle management from this point forward is stupid – plain and simple. To argue that eDiscovery is not a concern only categorizes an organization into the ostrich category. It’s time to get the heads out of the sand and start building out an infrastructure that supports finding and collecting potentially relevant information quickly and to manage the process for retaining and preserving this information.
2010-02-22 Iron Mountain Moves Into Software and Buys Mimosa Systems The long-rumored acquisition of Mimosa Systems by Iron Mountain is now official. This acquisition holds a lot of promise, in theory - boosting Iron Mountain's ability to satisfy expanding records management requirements, giving Iron Mountain both on-premise and hosted archiving capabilities, and complementing Iron Mountain's Stratify division. But, software is new territory for Iron Mountain and while the Mimosa technology is good, the company was not able to establish itself as a truly successful software company. This one will come down to timing and sales execution.
2010-02-17 The Cloud, The Cloud Everywhere Part 2 - SaaS While utility computing holds much promise, there are also examples of SaaS being used effectively in the eDiscovery market. EDD processors offer a web-based interface to case data. These interfaces provide varying levels of review functionality. When you think about it, hosted review has long been a staple of this market and the review platforms of vendors like CaseCentral, Kroll Ontrack, and Iron Mountain / Stratify are really SaaS applications.
2010-02-11 The Cloud, The Cloud Everywhere Part 1 - Utility Computing One of the hot topics at LegalTech 2010 was cloud computing. “The cloud,” as we like to refer to it, promises to offer cost savings and other efficiencies – in an economy obsessed with cost reduction, the buzz around the cloud is not surprising.
2010-02-04 Legal Hold Is The Sum Of Many Parts As a result of the potential for significant sanctions, one of the first information governance initiatives organizations seek to implement is legal hold – or litigation hold (yet another example of how much confusing industry jargon is out there). Implemented well, legal hold can help an organization avoid sanctions and improve both the efficacy and efficiency of downstream eDiscovery activities – collection, processing, and review.
2010-02-02 LegalTech Impressions - Day 1
2010-01-30 Think Email Archiving Is Dead? Think Again.
2010-01-26 ECA: The High-End of Legal Decision Support
2014-02-14 A Truly Fond Farewell Today is the end of an era for me; it is my last day with eDJ Group. It has been a great run working with the team here and I will truly miss it. As eDJ shifts more into a consulting business model and analyst firms struggle to remain relevant in a new information age, there is less of a market for independent research that covers the full breadth of the eDiscovery and information governance markets. As such, it is time for me to march into the sunset of my eDiscoveryJournal and eDJ Group lives.
2014-01-20 More Survey Results From eDJ Group In his blog post last week, Greg Buckles pointed out that the mission of eDJ Group is to help eDiscovery and IG professionals get the intelligence needed to do their jobs optimally. Our survey results can certainly be an asset to anyone looking to benchmark themselves versus others or simply to understand common trends.
2014-01-13 2014: Time To Take A More Realistic Look At The State of eDiscovery For the last decade, pundits like me have looked at trends in eDiscovery and tried to forecast where the market will head. In years past, there has been a focus on things like Early Case Assessment, eDiscovery in the Cloud, and Predictive Coding / Technology-Assisted Review. Each year, there is a feeling of progress and evolution, as if the practice of eDiscovery is somehow maturing. We grasp onto this feeling if only to harness some kind of positive energy in an otherwise frustrating market.
2013-12-04 Why Information Governance Programs Do Not Work - The Free eDJ Report The Information governance (IG) topic is slowly evolving to the point of mainstream awareness thanks to high-profile data breaches, out-of-control litigation cost, and the simply astonishing growth in the volume of digital information and the cost to manage and store it. Many refer to the IG market growing rapidly and evolving quickly, but in doing so, miss the point that IG is not a market or buying category; rather, it is a topic made up of sub-topics such as storage/archiving, eDiscovery, compliance and GRC, search, records management, and security. As such, IG manifests in organizations as a program versus a specific solution. This report examines why so many iG programs languish, lacking successful outcomes.
2013-12-02 A Business Model Tweak For eDJ Group At its most basic level, this business model shift is really a subtle one away from the broken traditional analyst model to one of market-makers that cover a select number of vendor companies (as opposed to trying to cover all 500+ providers) and work on the ground with consulting clients. The hope is that this will actually be a more beneficial model in that the research-on-demand element will lead to producing more timely, relevant reports that help our clients do their jobs.
2013-11-15 eDJ's October Peer Group Meeting Notes Summary Available For Download The eDJ Peer Group is a community of professionals practicing in the fields of information governance and eDiscovery. The Peer Group is based on the foundation of learning through shared experience in a confidential environment. That’s right – what happens in the Peer Group stays in the Peer Group. eDJ Analysts moderate the group, share customized research, and then can report back on questions. Analysts also have the chance really listen to the issues on the minds of Peer Group members, take the pulse of the market, and then prioritize research based on the needs of in-the-trenches professionals.
2013-11-04 ARMA Conference 2013: Opportunity Unbound This year, the ARMA International Conference signaled a real shift in the market – eDiscovery is becoming firmly entrenched in the information governance (IG) category. This does not mean that eDiscovery is no longer a standalone market. But, it does mean that organizations are starting to realize that solid IG programs are the pre-requisite for better, less expensive eDiscovery.
2013-10-28 Preliminary IG Survey Results Show IG Projects Getting Funded, But... As the 2013 ARMA International conference kicks off here in Las Vegas this week, I thought it would be a good idea to share some preliminary data from theinformation governance (IG) survey eDJ is running with ARMA and ViaLumina. The survey looks to understand not only attitudes toward IG, but also to get a sense of what projects are actually happening today and where the budget for those projects is coming from. One of the more interesting findings in a first pass through the data is that, for the first time, more than half of our respondents – almost 55% - reported having actual budget dollars allocated to IG.
2013-10-23 The New eDJ Group: Learn the Working Analyst Difference Businesses go through natural evolutionary periods, growing and changing over time – sometimes minor incremental changes, and sometimes more radical changes. Since we started eDiscoveryJournal almost four years ago, the company has gone through a series of minor incremental changes, all leading up to the more radical change that we would like to announce today: it has come time to retire and replace it with a more unified website at
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