Group creates standard to ease e-discovery data transfer
By Brian Fonseca, Computerworld, 10/24/07
The Electronic Discovery Reference Model standards group Tuesday unveiled an
XML-based standard that it says will allow documents transfer through the
systems of multiple vendors during the various stages of e-discovery.
The new standard defines metadata of e-mail and files for simplified transfer to
and from applications that are used as part of an e-discovery process by
businesses, service providers and outside legal firms, said Kurt Leafstrand, a
spokesman for the two-year-old standards group.
Leafstrand said the new standard supports the use of Optical Character
Recognition files created from scanned images and TIFF documents featuring
stored images, as well as instant messaging, attachments and video metadata.
The XML standard schema was ratified by the 41 members of the standards group
last week at the biannual meeting of the St. Paul, Minn.-based organization, he
Leafstrand said the XML schema standard will be launched next February in New
York at the LegalTech conference. By then, the standards group hopes that at
least 20 vendors will have successfully passed its newly created compliance
test, enabling their products to natively support the electronic transfer
For example, Clearwell Systems Inc. plans to begin shipping Version 3.0 of its
Clearwell Intelligent Platform, which will support the new standard, noted
Leafstrand, also director of product management at Santa Clara, Calif.-based
Clearwell. He said his company's software will export data to service providers
via the standard format early on in the e-discovery process.
"In the past, there hasn't been a standard way to hand off [information] from
one step of e-discovery to the other," said Leafstrand. "With no validation
tools to make sure you have done it right, it's been a very hit-and-miss,
Regarding future development, he said businesses can expect the EDRM standards
group to begin to tackle the topic of redaction, or document editing, as early
as May 2008.
Copyright Computerworld, Inc.