Book: eDiscovery Plain and Simple

A new book by Allison L. Brecher and Shawnna Childress called eDiscovery Plain and Simple explores eDiscovery in a way that makes it, well, um, plain and simple.

Tackling the nuts and bolts of eDiscovery, from defining technology and legal issues to explaining how information is stored, accessed and shared, readers will gain a better understanding of the topic that many of us spend a great deal talking about.

The book's subtitle sums it up as it says it's "a plain English crash course in e-discovery" and indeed it discusses the world of electronically stored information (ESI) and discovery from the perspective of Brecher and Childress, attorney and information technology consultants, considered by many to be experts in the field.

A Field Guide for eDiscovery

A few months ago, Fernando M. Pinguelo, the founder of the eDiscovery best practices blog e-Lessons Learned interviewed Ms. Brecher about her book, in which she discusses the inspiration for writing, the challenges facing eDiscovery and the work she's done within the field.

For instance, Brecher says that the book was born out of a need for simple, yet helpful guide to eDiscovery when she was first learning about it:

With so many computer systems at the company to understand and with eDiscovery case law growing rapidly, it became difficult for me to apply legal principles to our day-to-day management of electronically stored information. I didn’t really understand the intricacies of information technology when I started practicing in this area and I longed for a Cliff’s Notes-type of guide about information technology for someone like me who did not have a computer science background. Also, judging by the number of calls I get from outside counsel and attorneys at other companies who are new to eDiscovery, I knew I was not alone in the search for such a resource.

In addition, Brecher acknowledges that new rules and regulations have increased the need for more focus on eDiscovery and thus have presented organizations with challenges.

The [Federal court eDiscovery] rule amendments ... imposed an obligation on counsel to actively manage that process throughout the course of a litigation matter. During the throes of litigation, with many looming deadlines, attorneys have little time to learn about a client’s computer systems.

Overall, Brecher and Childress have more than 15 years of experience designing records management policies, advising information technology projects and preparing counsel for litigation. Their book brings together the wealth of their knowledge in a simple and informative manner and will soon become a dog-eared book on the shelves of knowledge managers, IT professional and legal counsel alike.