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They’re Here…. 7th Circuit Mock Hearing & Panel Discussion Videos on Predictive Coding

Created: 26 Feb 2013
Matthew Nelson's picture
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The 7th Circuit Pilot Program sponsored an educational mock hearing and expert panel discussion in Chicago last May to tackle important issues related to the use of predictive coding technology. The long awaited video footage of the event is finally here and available for review courtesy of Symantec.

The event begins with U.S. Chief Judge for the Northern District of Illinois, James F. Holderman, welcoming a courtroom packed full of people eager to learn more about novel issues presented by increased usage of predictive coding technology in litigation. National Archives Director of Litigation, Jason R. Baron, follows with opening remarks about the role of information retrieval in eDiscovery to set the stage for a lively mock hearing and panel discussion about a number of hot topics related to the use of predictive coding technology. Notable speakers include Maura R. Grossman, Counsel at Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz; Dr. David Lewis, co-founder of the TREC Legal Track; Ralph Losey, Partner at Jackson Lewis; Matt Nelson, eDiscovery Counsel at Symantec; Jeff Sharer, Partner at Sidley Austin; and Martin T. Tully, Partner and National eDiscovery Practice Group Chair, Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP.

The hypothetical hearing centers on a dispute between parties to a patent litigation matter regarding the use of predictive coding technology. Plaintiffs argue defendants should use predictive coding technology to assist with the production and review of documents. Defendants counter that they have a process in place for responding to discovery requests that is sufficient and that includes the use of legal technology approaches like keyword search that are commonly used during discovery. The hearing participants take positions (not necessarily their own) about important issues such as the reliability of predictive coding technology, steps needed to establish a protocol that is fair to both parties, and cost shifting. Ralph Losey does an excellent job playing the role of “judge” and summarizes key arguments made by each party before ruling from the bench at the conclusion of the hearing.

Following the mock hearing, Losey and others debated important issues related to the use of predictive coding as part of a lively panel discussion.  The panel discussion covered a broad range of interesting issues, but some of the liveliest discussion related to the following topics:

  •  Should parties be required to disclose their use of predictive coding technology?
  • Is it appropriate to use keyword searches to cull electronically stored information (ESI) prior to using predictive coding technology?
  • Could the misapplication of statistics be the downfall of predictive coding?

The mock argument and panel discussion are among several excellent resources practitioners should consider reviewing to help them navigate a rapidly shifting and sometimes confusing predictive coding technology landscape.  Please feel free to share your comments and feedback below and be sure to visit the 7th Circuit Pilot Program’s homepage for more information about the group’s efforts to help clarify some of the most complex and important eDiscovery issues facing litigators today.

This post was co-authored by Symantec's Allison Walton, eDiscovery Counsel