As I have mentioned before, there is an eDiscovery conference taking place in Dublin this Friday, 14 November. Its website is here and the brochure is here.
Speakers include Mr Justice Frank Clarke of the Irish Supreme Court, US Magistrate Judge Andrew Peck, Lee Meyrick from Nuix, Simon Collins and David Wallack from NightOwl Discovery, and speakers from DAC Beachcroft, A&L Goodbody, Central Bank of Ireland and others. Oh, and me, moderating the closing panel with the two judges; we will look at (among other things) the eDiscovery Guide which has been in use in Ireland for well over a year now, at the implications of foreign demands for discovery and at some of those things which transcend jurisdictional differences and are relevant anywhere.
As a warm-up for the event, the Irish Times has published an article called Rise of eDiscovery signals start of brave new world for litigation. It is not entirely right to suggest that we are at the “start” of electronic discovery in Ireland: it is three years since I first spoke at a conference there, the banking litigation, and specifically the Madoff litigation, has been the catalyst for much development of thinking there, the eDiscovery Guide has proved a useful initiative, and providers like conference sponsors NightOwl Discovery and Nuix are established there. There is a case for saying that Ireland will have done well by watching the rest of the world take its first steps over the last decade and can take the benefit of both the technology and the thinking which has evolved elsewhere to meet the changed and changing world.
I am quoted a bit in the article, reflecting a large chunk of a Saturday afternoon spent talking to the author. Three points of mine are worth emphasizing, as I hope to do on Friday.
One is the importance of “policing and supervising the discovery process with clear guidelines”, by which I meant judicial control as well as proper project management from the lawyers.
Another is the fact that the older definition of a “relevant document” still works – a tweet, an audio file, a photograph are no less discoverable documents than an email or a Word file.
The third is the point made right at the end, that there are opportunities given in this new industry including “the need for a new type of person to help with the searches, but who is not necessarily a lawyer”.
I interviewed Mr Justice Clarke in London earlier this year. You can see the resulting video here:
I believe there are still places at this event and you can get details of it from the website.