Relativity Fest London reaches its third and final day today. The usual one-day event has been spread across three part-days, a format which allows people from different time zones to join in.
At 13:00 BST today, David Horrigan of Relativity will moderate a panel whose title is Judicial & Practitioner Perspectives: e-Disclosure, the Pilot Scheme, & Global e-Discovery. The speakers are Master McCloud, Erica Albertson, Head of eDiscovery Solutions at Simmons & Simmons, Ed Crosse, Partner at Simmons & Simmons, and Kushal Gandhi, Partner at CMS.
David Horrigan talked about this panel in my interview with him which I wrote about here.
Initial reactions suggest that the virtual format has been a success. I did a webinar-with-moving-pictures last week, in a format which was pretty much the same as one of Relativity Fest’s virtual panels. If the event itself is a little more strenuous for the speakers – 60 minutes of eye contact with a camera is not easy – one must give credit for the time not taken up with travelling to and from the venue.
We lose something, certainly, by not seeing people face to face as one does at a physical event. The loss is not so much of people you know well anyway, but of the strangers you might have bumped into. It is not particularly hard to keep contact with people you know; it is much harder to make new contacts. If we are settling down for a long haul without long haul flights, we need a way of replicating those opportunities to make new connections. This deserves a longer analysis, perhaps when we have a few more virtual events under our belt.
Meanwhile, virtual Relativity Fest London gives us a good replica of the real thing.