13 Responses to Should You “Go Native”?

  1. William Kellermann says:

    To redact in a paper paradigm, I create a copy and black out privileged content – in effect creating a new paper document. To redact in the ‘TIFF & Load’ paradigm, I have to create a new file by printing the native to a TIFF image. Why is it objectionable to perform a digital redaction that creates a new file? At some level, it is all the same thing… Redaction is always something different and less than the original.

  2. Rob Robinson says:

    Excellent article – from both an update and educational point of view – and one our team will most certainly use as a reference in answering questions on the oft considered topic “Should I Go Native”.


  3. […] e-discovery) extensively analyzed this opinion and three others involving native format issues in this post. Hearkening to the native-art motif of his post, he quoted Gauguin to summarize the ruling: “A […]

  4. gltcnola says:

    I agree with Mr. Kellerman … once you redact you change the original so does the format really matter? A key takeaway for me here was the idea that firms must invest in some type of “specialized” software to review and produce native files. It seems to me this barrier can be overcome by leveraging a SaaS solution to review and redact.
    I recently wrote a white paper that talks about how to spec out a web based solution (you can find it at http://www.anacomp.com/pdf/wp/Hosted_Lit_Support_whitepaper.pdf. It’s not a sales pitch: the folks at Anacomp have posted it on their web site since they have a product that they feel fits the criterion I set out)
    I’m curious, Ralph, what you think about that as an alternative to specilaized software?

  5. […] 25, 2009 Filed under: 1 | Ralph Losey has an excellent post this week on native files called Should You Go Native ?  As always, Ralph has a very thorough, scholarly approach to the issue and focuses in on […]

  6. Ralph Losey says:

    Glad this Blog provoked a lot of comments as it was difficult to write. SaaS, by which you are referring to “Software as a Service,” can be a viable solution for some things, sure. Why not? Whatever works within the budget. Of course, there is still a cost for renting software by the project too, iw – SaaS is not freeware.

  7. William Kellermann says:

    “Going native” has been a touchy subject for years, even when metadata was generally thought not to be discoverable such that “native application, native review” was not such a big deal as it is now as a source for spoliation.

    My earlier comment also probably failed to reflect that it is a great article – native redaction is a minor issue in many ways once you get past the FUD and the fact that the tools are currently limited to non-existance.

    Specialty software will continue to be a trend – licensed, hosted or SaaS’d but it is not the only answer. The most difficult problems with respect to “going native” are the process discipline and infrastruture necessary to support the effort. It is a constant struggle for law firms and even old-school EDD vendors across the board to keep up and adapt to the rapidly developing business necessity of keeping evidentiary data sequestered, managed and unspoiled.

  8. Clinton Field says:

    The time and cost considerations for redactions don’t always favor the TIFF approach. For example, large spreadsheets with responsive and confidential data interspersed can be incredibly time-consuming to redact in an imaged format. Working in a native format, it would be possible to extract any responsive information that’s indexed in the spreadsheet (perhaps by product ID or invoice number) but not grouped together in the original document. Whether this produces significant time savings over the whole project depends on the quantity of these kinds of documents, but I’ve seen clients who regularly use Excel spreadsheets as the functional equivalents of medium-sized databases.

  9. Ralph Losey says:

    A new case has come out exemplifying the transition from past to present, where the court required the producing party to convert paper documents to Tiff and load. Proctor & Gamble Co. v. S.C. Johnson & Son, Inc. 2009 WL 440543 (E.D.Tex., Feb. 19, 2008).

    The district court rejected the producing party’s argument that when it agreed to produce in Tiff, that it did not also agree to OCR the paper records. In other words, it tried to separate the Tiff from the load file. The OCR index in the Tiff file is what makes the Tiff files searchable. Without that, the Tiff files are no better than paper. The producing party did not really argue that point, but did seek to have the requesting party pay for the OCR load file creation expense. The court made short work of the cost-shifting argument using the seven factors of Zubulake v. UBS Warburg LLC, 217 F.R.D. 309 (S.D.N.Y.20030. The producing party made a poor showing here and so this decision does not rule out possible cost-shifting in other cases.

  10. William Kellermann says:

    It is stories (and cases) like this that make me cringe. Lawyers and judges have got to learn the difference between EXTRACTED text and OCR text. Taking perfectly good digital content, printing it to a computer ‘picture’ and then asking the computer to read it and turn it back into searchable content is LUNACY!

    I don’t think there is a vendor or conversion software out there that doesn’t write the extracted text to an intermediate Access or SQL database for use ‘just in case’ two years down the road.

  11. Robert Childress says:

    Hey Ralph, Great Article. Keep them coming. I hope you and your family are doing well. Love the video of John Cleese.

  12. Nice topic Ralph. Just when everyone thought it was safe to get back into the water!

  13. […] producing 200,000 unsearchable Tiff files. See Story of the Poor Bunny and my prior article Should You “Go Native”?  These actions forced the court to have two evidentiary hearings concerning what was supposedly […]

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