Archive.org should be high on any list of important research Websites. Essentially the people behind this site are attempting to capture the history of the Internet and the data that has been posted there, even after the data has been removed. You can read more details about that mission here. One part of that effort is the Wayback Machine, which has older, outdated images of Web pages dating back to 1996, about 40 billion total. It is a great way to view discontinued versions of web pages and has already been used in court proceedings. They've recently been sued by another company over the Wayback Machine. There's some extensive commentary over the suit on the Patry Copyright Blog, if you have an interest. Oh, and if the name Wayback Machine rings a vague and distant bell for you, click here.
A recent article in the Fulton County (Gerogia) Daily Report adds one more item to the list of things you should never say in an e-mail, which is paraphrased as: "Gosh, I just may have made a $1,000,000 malpractice mistake." When the law firm was fired and the files were turned over to the client, a copy of this little gem surfaced in the case file. Of course now the client is suing the law firm and using this as an exhibit. Read the story here.
More details about the Oklahoma Electronic Discovery Summit (and enrollment information) are now available here. I did a prior blog post about some of the highlights here. I'm sure we will have a large number of litigators present, but electronic discovery awareness and understanding is not just for litigators.Corporate lawyers need to advise clients on document retention and destruction policies. Criminal prosecutions are being built on electronic evidence. Family lawyers are finding Internet use records becoming relevant and important. Sifting through hundreds of thousands of digital records requires new tools and techniques.
Several years ago when I was called on to do my first "60 Tips in 60 Minutes" program, one of my tips was about using Paste Special to copy and paste just the text from one document into another without bringing the formatting or hyperlinks or different font from the original document. (Just copy the text, open new document, then select Edit, then Paste Special, then Unformatted Text.) This is particularly useful when copying text from an online legal research provider or other web page into a word processing document. It has been a tip that is hard to "retire" as almost every time you mention it to a large crowd, someone says out loud, "Oh my gosh, I didn't know that" or something to that effect. I've received many e-mails over the years thanking me for this tip. This "classic" tip was the subject of an article by Dan Pinnington in this month's Law Practice Today. You might want to circulate the link to Dan's article (or this post) within your firm. Someone there may not know about this and it could save them lots of document clean up time.
Law Practice Today is a free monthly e-zine published by the ABA Law Practice Management Section. You can subscribe to receive e-mail notifications when the new issue is published. Hopefully many readers are already aware of this great publication. It has been top notch recently, with many articles on a variety of practice management issues.
Check out Law Tech Guru's post "How Good is Your Spyware Scanner?" He includes a link to a PC World article on the same topic. It seems that some adware companies are petitioning and threatening legal action to get their products removed from the databases of the various spyware/adware detection software packages. The result for you as a consumer is that when you update the software, your system may no longer detect the removed product and warn you about it. There's been a buzz on the Internet this week about the fact that Microsoft AntiSpyware was changed to give Claria's installations an "Ignore" rather than a "Quarantine" rating. Clarita used to be called Gator and was sued by many companies over its pop-up ads. Microsoft denies that the change was inappropriate or had anything to do with alleged ongoing talks to purchase Claria. This is a huge problem and I hope the new Anti-Spyware Coalition can make some headway.
Kansas attorney Grant D. Griffiths has launched a new blog this month called Home Office Lawyer. He's already put up quite a few posts and I'm going to trust that his blog continues and feature him as my Website of the Week. He also posts on Macs in the law office and paperless office concepts. I'm not exactly an advocate of the home office set-up, but recognize that some lawyers really like it, others are forced into it and for some practice styles, (e.g. only researching and writing appellate briefs or a part time practice) it is the perfect situation. I'll look forward to seeing how Grant covers the issue of meeting with clients and others as his practice is 25% criminal defense and 75% domestic, which are the two practice areas where many would be most uncomfortable inviting clients, witnesses and opposing parties into their home or even giving them one's home address. Good luck on the new blog, Grant.