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2015 eDiscovery Review shows social media in the courts and rules of proportionality in focus.

Social Media Trending in 2015 eDiscovery

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The latest report and research regarding eDiscovery comes from law firm Gibson & Dunn and gives us a clear insight into the predictions of legal and tech specialists from 2015 – echoing caselaw, Discovery requests and solidifying beliefs that social media content is becoming a main resource of retrievable information.

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Digital communication has evolved from text to email and now to the online platform of instant messaging, tweeting and social media posts. With the evolution of communication and data footprints and a growing need for discoverability of this content – so must the ediscovery process and legal tech evolve as a result. Cases involving social media have continued to increase at a rapid pace as courts struggle to interpret and apply outdated court rules to this new digital evidence.

From recent legal ethics reviews, opinions and examinations on Federal Rules of Evidence, the balance between private communication and discoverable records has to be balanced and evaluated in terms of its relevance to litigation proceedings and Proportionality. Proportionality, in particular, has been a recurring theme in producing social media and digital content, with cases such as in Silva v. Dick’s Sporting Goods, Inc., involving Facebook content, the court found that; “[t]he fact that the information [sought] is in an electronic file as opposed to a file cabinet does not give [the party seeking discovery] the right to rummage through the entire file.

The context of social, professional and business communications must be examined in light of eDiscovery requests, as well as social media compliance policies set out by businesses and who might own content placed on social media platforms such as company pages/ handles. When social media content comes from mobile devices there are more questions and less clarity – especially with the vast growth of IOT. However, despite isolated controversies such as Fitibit cases, it remains to seen the relevancy of the IOT to the eDiscovery process and questions posed in this report regard the “possession, custody and control” of IOT data.

As labelled by many, this is the era of “Big Data” and so in anticipation of eDiscovery requests, firms and agencies must be equipped to manage, preserve and present copious amount of information in line with legal and industry compliance standards. The information governance obstacle is one that won’t be overcome or forgotten about soon – training (data minimization), tech and compliance are necessary to ensure secure InfoGov management adn successful eDiscovery processes.

Role of WebPreserver

WebPreserver is an innovative eDiscovery tool, essential for the effective and easy creation of evidence from social media and preservation of digital content for litigation purposes; an essential cost and time effective tool for legal professionals, litigation support and law enforcement officials.

With the easy installation of a Plug-in and single-click capture technology, WebPreserver software creates snapshots of evidence from any content place in the internet and stores them in PDF and WARC formats for use in litigation. Digital content is authenticated in line with Federal Rules of Evidence, the E-Sign Act and other standards of compliance by way of a digital e-signature and automated time-stamp.

Not only is strong, reliable evidence created form online content, WebPreserver software also provides secure resources for the archiving, preservation and sharing of this content. Once a Snapshot is created, it can be downloaded or stored on our online platform and shared with clients and colleagues in personal folders, with the additional features of keyword tagging.

Ensure that when engaging in litigation you maintain a high standard of records management and technical compliance; WebPreserver is a simple but effective means of doing this. Avoid sanctions and additional administrative and Discovery costs with the proper utilization of this leading eDiscovery software.

The information and materials on this blog are provided for general and informative purposes only and are not intended to be construed as legal advice. Content on this blog is not intended to substitute the advice of a licensed attorney, as laws are subject to change and vary with time, from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. Content on this blog may be changed without notice and is not guaranteed to be complete, correct or up-to-date.

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