Josh asks a good question here. One that is getting more and more complicated as we delve into not only social media, but a ton of other data sources for eDiscovery purposes.
“Alternatively, how does one define the native application for social media? Is it from an app on a smartphone? Or was it created in Chrome on a MacBook? Not knowing those details makes cases like this a challenge, because the PDF production could have been perfectly adequate.”
I’ve been thinking about this recently. There’s a lot more to a social media post than there is in the typical email/document forms that our eDiscovery tools were designed around. Yes, a screenshot of a tweet or Facebook post might be adequate in some situations, it’s also something that could very well be missing some important information, such as the larger conversation that may have gone on within comments, etc., location information, time stamps, etc. And that’s just simple social media. What about when we get into non-public information, like snaps, messages, Instagram stories, and other things? How can we even verify a screenshot? What about location and messaging information that lives on mobile devices, in things like SQLite databases? How do our current tools even address those entries? How can an attorney “review” that information in a review platform that has either a text or document viewer options?
I think many eDiscovery tools fall short in these areas right now, either by not supporting these data types, or by being fairly confusing for reviewers to use, and yet, this is pretty much our whole lives now. Think that much data about people is going to be necessary in litigation? We should probably have a better idea of what we’re going to do with it before that happens.