In e-discovery, it's astonishing how often requesting parties fail to designate the forms in which they want electronically stored information produced. Equally galling is how often producing parties ignore such designations and convert ESI to costly, cumbersome a tagged image file format just to accommodate creaky review tools and antiquated workflows, or to indulge an extravagant affection for Bates numbers.
Maybe it's time we ask: Is it malpractice to produce ESI as images? At what point is wasting a client's money actionable or unethical?
Many approach electronic data discovery as the conversion of native electronic information to TIFF images. Then, because TIFF images don't include the searchable text of electronic originals, text must be extracted and stored in files accompanying the TIFF images. When loaded into review tools such as AD Summation or Concordance, these text files are indexed or searched to help counsel select document images to read. Typically, a third file serves as a means to correlate each image to its counterpart text file when loading the data; hence, these ancillary files are called "load files."
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By: Craig Ball