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About the Bloggers

Brad Jenkins

Brad Jenkins, President and CEO of CloudNine Discovery, has over 20 years of experience leading customer focused companies in the litigation support arena. Brad has authored many articles on litigation support issues, and has spoken before national audiences on document management practices and solutions.

Doug Austin

Doug Austin, Professional Services Manager for CloudNine Discovery, has over 20 years experience providing legal technology consulting and technical project management services to numerous commercial and government clients. Doug has also authored several articles on eDiscovery best practices.

Jane Gennarelli

Jane Gennarelli is a principal of Magellan’s Law Corporation and has been assisting litigators in effectively handling discovery materials for over 30 years. She authored the company’s Best Practices in a Box™ content product and assists firms in applying technology to document handling tasks. She is a known expert and often does webinars and presentations for litigation support professionals around the country. Jane can be reached by email at jane@litigationbestpractices.com.

Does This Scare You? – eDiscovery Horrors!

October 31, 2012

By Doug Austin

 

Today is Halloween.  While we could try to “scare” you with the traditional “frights”, we’re an eDiscovery blog, so every year we try to “scare” you in a different way instead.  Does this scare you?

The defendant had been previously sanctioned $500,000 ($475,000 to the plaintiff and $25,000 to the court) and held in contempt of court by the magistrate judge for spoliation, who also recommended an adverse inference instruction be issued at trial.  The defendant appealed to the district court, where Minnesota District Judge John Tunheim increased the award to the plaintiff to $600,000.  Oops!

What about this?

Even though the litigation hold letter from April 2008 was sent to the primary custodians, at least one principal was determined to have actively deleted relevant emails. Additionally, the plaintiffs made no effort to suspend the automatic destruction policy of emails, so emails that were deleted could not be recovered.  Ultimately, the court found that 9 of 14 key custodians had deleted relevant documents. After the defendants raised its spoliation concerns with the court, the plaintiffs continued to delete relevant information, including decommissioning and discarding an email server without preserving any of the relevant ESI.  As a result, the New York Supreme Court imposed the severest of sanctions against the plaintiffs for spoliation of evidence – dismissal of their $20 million case.

Or this?

For most organizations, information volume doubles every 18-24 months and 90% of the data in the world has been created in the last two years. In a typical company in 2011, storing that data consumed about 10% of the IT budget. At a growth rate of 40% (even as storage unit costs decline), storing this data will consume over 20% of the typical IT budget by 2014.

How about this?

There “was stunned silence by all attorneys in the court room after that order. It looks like neither side saw it coming.”

Or maybe this?

If you have deleted any of your photos from Facebook in the past three years, you may be surprised to find that they are probably still on the company’s servers.

Scary, huh?  If the possibility of sanctions, exponential data growth and judges ordering parties to perform predictive coding keep you awake at night, then the folks at eDiscovery Daily will do our best to provide useful information and best practices to enable you to relax and sleep soundly, even on Halloween!

Then again, if the expense, difficulty and risk of processing and loading up to 100 GB of data into an eDiscovery review application that you’ve never used before terrifies you, maybe you should check this out.

Of course, if you seriously want to get into the spirit of Halloween, click here.  This will really terrify you!

Those of you who are really mortified that the next post in Jane Gennarelli’s “Litigation 101” series won’t run this week, fear not – it will run tomorrow.

What do you think?  Is there a particular eDiscovery issue that scares you?  Please share your comments and let us know if you’d like more information on a particular topic.

Happy Halloween!

Disclaimer: The views represented herein are exclusively the views of the author, and do not necessarily represent the views held by CloudNine Discovery. eDiscoveryDaily is made available by CloudNine Discovery solely for educational purposes to provide general information about general eDiscovery principles and not to provide specific legal advice applicable to any particular circumstance. eDiscoveryDaily should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a lawyer you have retained and who has agreed to represent you.
http://www.cloudninediscovery.com/ondemand/free-software-trial.aspx

Comments

  • October 31, 2012 Doug Austin

    Craig, I was trying to emphasize the "information volume doubles every 18-24 months and 90% of the data in the world has been created in the last two years" (stats stated by CGOC) as the "scary" part of the statistic, since you have to account for that exponential data growth in discovery. Perhaps, I should have left it at that. Frankly, I'm a bit surprised that storage isn't already more than 20% of a typical IT budget.
    Each year on Halloween, we try to find three or four trends or key case decisions and ask our readers "Does this scare you?" as a way of poking fun at Halloween through eDiscovery happenings that might "scare" them (or at least give them pause). Hopefully, it gives people a second chance to see those stories if they missed them earlier and allows us to have a little fun with the holiday. :-)

  • October 31, 2012 Craig Ball

    It's not clear to me why (even assuming it's accurate) I should be horrified that 20% or more of a typical IT budget may be expended on storage by 2014. Storage is not merely *a* crucial function of IT, one could argue that it is *the most* crucial function of IT. I would not be horrified to learn that Starbucks spends 20% of its materials budget on coffee, would you? Would anyone be surprised if the cost of storage accounts for 20% or more of the unit cost of your computer, tablet or phone?

    The numbers may be skewed even more by the likelihood that the cost of migration of data to the cloud is probably characterized as a "storage" cost. Accordingly, such migration--accounting as it does for reduced expenditures behind the firewall (and reduction of IT staff, as well)--would doubly impact the growth of the percentage of expenditures attributed to storage.

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