Last week, I was one of the featured speakers at the Richmond Journal of Law and Technology’s annual symposium, titled “E-Discovery: A New Frontier.” I discussed many of the new and cutting edge issues facing practitioners in government investigations and criminal litigation, including pre-indictment practice, various constitutional issues, privacy, and various issues relating to social media.

Michael Yager, Director of e-discovery at Spotts Fain, presented on “E-discovery as Quantum Law.” Michael discussed how developments in e-discovery law have been no less shattering to practitioners in the “classic” practice of law than the introduction of quantum theory to physics. He described the clash of cultures within the practice of e-discovery, and also argued that the introduction of ESI has created a noticeable shift in jurisprudence related to e-discovery, causing a “cultural explosion” within a segment of the legal profession not seen in any other profession since the development of Quantum physics approximately a century ago.

Michael Simon, Director of Strategic Development Technology Solutions for Navigant also presented at the symposium on challenges relating to “big data” in today’s world. He analyzed historical trends of data and how advances in technology have impacted today’s legal practice.

At the end of day, I joined Michael and Michael for a spirited open mic/roundtable discussion of various issues and questions posed by the audience. We discussed current trends, challenges with ESI in certain industry areas such as health care, whether costs relating to ESI permit all practitioners – from big firms, small firms, and solo practitioners – to participate equally in the litigation process, and whether costs and technology challenges associated with ESI permit “justice” to be done.

JOLT has pictures of the symposium posted on their website here, and will have a video recording of my presentation up shortly – I will link to that when it’s posted.

As part of their Annual Survey issue, JOLT is publishing an article written by Adrian Fontecilla and myself titled “Social Media Evidence in Government Investigations and Criminal Proceedings: A Frontier of New Legal Issues.” This is a substantially updated and revised version of what we published this winter, which you can find here. I will post our new article next month when it is published.