The Founding of LTPI
About two years ago, a group of professionals, very familiar with the impact technology has on the legal profession, set a goal to create a new organization for like-minded individuals. The objective of the organization is to develop and share best practices and propose practical standards and guidelines to assist practitioners in a rapidly evolving industry.
Another goal is to provide a forum in which less experienced legal professionals can interact with seasoned veterans, gather experience working on projects, and gain visibility through speaking opportunities and credits on publication.
The group formed a nonprofit named the Legal Technology Professionals Institute (LTPI). The Advisory Panel of LTPI has structured the organization, developed operating procedures, and identified some immediate opportunities for the organization to make a positive contribution. With the financial support of several charter benefactors, the LTPI is ready to begin to deliver on its promises.
LTPI projects are a formal exercise. Project suggestions are vetted by members and must be approved by the Board of Directors to ensure that the outcome provides a deliverable needed by practitioners. A project charter is drafted to identify the scope, clarify goals, and define deliverables. LTPI assigns members to work on projects. Usually, a project team consists of a blend of subject matter experts and interested practitioners and they are guided to completion by a designated project leader. Once completed, the project outcome undergoes a period of public comment before being adopted and released. While this process sounds lengthy, the process typically lasts three to four months.
Applying this process, LTPI delivered several high-quality project outcomes to the industry last year, including:
- Guidelines for Self-Collection. While self-collection is generally an undesirable practice, we recognize that it is going to happen. The guidelines LTPI developed this year were presented at several conferences over the year, and were very well received.
- Practical Guidance for the Meet and Confer Process. While plenty of guidance on the meet and confer process exists, we found that there is little material addressing the practical and tactical aspects of the process. LTPI developed a framework which enables parties to litigation to anticipate and manage events throughout a meet and confer. Practitioners who have used this framework report savings of both time and money for their clients. This framework is now being used as a key teaching aid by practitioners around the country.
- The Discovery Data Governance Model (DDGM). The DDGM helps people identify the many data elements that may be involved in a case, and where an organization may store that data. Aligned with information governance and data security models, the DDGM provides a flexible guide and template that organizations may adapt to their needs. It enables organizations to properly track data, and it covers people, systems, processes, and procedures for all phases of the matter. Feedback on the DDGM from corporations, law firms, and services providers has been very favorable.
- The Audio Production Model. The audio production model was developed with input from companies specializing in producing audio materials. The production of audio evidence is an emerging area which previously had no standards or guidelines. The model provides extremely helpful guidance to practitioners in this specialized area.
LTPI is also working on a Model Code of Conduct, which is undergoing final internal reviews and which will be available for public comment shortly.
Another LTPI project team is working on a Collections project to define best practices associated with collections from an exhaustive list of particular data sources.
Moving forward into the next year we have several exciting projects in development that are moving through the vetting process, including one or more projects addressing the use of artificial intelligence in a legal setting.
The founders of LTPI recognize that a number of organizations serve the legal industry. Taking care not to duplicate those services, LTPI recognizes that our core mission synergizes well with the mission and values of other organizations. Over the last year, LTPI has taken steps to build partnerships with other industry groups, and will continue to do so in the coming year.
- The Masters Conference. For years now, the Masters Conference has provided events, both nationally and internationally, to inform and educate industry professionals. The Masters Conference provides LTPI with many opportunities to showcase our project deliverables and further educate our public. LTPI participated in the Master’s Washington, DC conference in 2016, and has targeted events in San Francisco and New York in 2017. Our partnership with the Masters Conference provides LTPI members a discount on participation at any Masters Conference event. It also provides sponsors of the Masters Conference the ability to contribute to LTPI projects.
- ACEDS. LTPI has worked closely with the Association of Certified E-Discovery Specialists to build a solid relationship. Like ACEDS, LTPI is dedicated to educating the industry. As a developer of new tools, guidelines, and standards, LTPI needs a way to share the fruits of our projects. ACEDS has been instrumental in helping LTPI to promote initiatives and projects. Recently, LTPI shared the podium with ACEDS in a very well-attended webinar to discuss the Meet and Confer framework.
Other Events and Publications
- E-Discovery Day. This is an annual event featuring web-based seminars on trending topics of interest to the e-discovery community. LTPI and about a dozen other organizations created presentations which were scheduled throughout the day. LTPI created two presentations for the event, including one on the Discovery Data Governance Model. In addition to virtual presentations, E-discovery Day featured networking events in major cities. LTPI participated in the networking event held in New York City.
- Ingenious events. These are smaller, more intimate events, generally featuring a focused attention on some aspect of e-discovery. LTPI participated in a number of these events in 2016 that showcased LTPI projects.
- Publications. LTPI members are regularly quoted in articles published in the industry. In addition, LTPI and its projects have been the subject of several recent articles published by LTN and ACEDS. The word is getting out!
Other News of Interest
Last year the Board of Directors concluded that LTPI required more work than a five-member board could handle. Acting in accordance with the LTPI Bylaws, the Board decided to add two members to the Board. Candidates were nominated from among the LTPI membership, and a membership vote elected Kevin Clark and Seth Eichenholtz to join the LTPI Board.
Very late in the year, Board member (and a founding member of LTPI), Babs Deacon decided it was time to retire from the industry. Unfortunately, that retirement included LTPI. Babs made substantial contributions to getting LTPI off the ground and is sorely missed. The Board of Directors is working on identifying a replacement.
As a member driven organization, we want our activities to be transparent to our members. Our financials are available on the LTPI website, so you can see how your membership dues and benefactor contributions were applied to our activities over the last year.
As a member-driven, non-profit organization, LTPI made the decision to not allow specific sponsors to buy their way into influencing our direction or project outcomes. We use the term “Benefactor” to indicate that their contributions to LTPI represents their commitment to thought leadership and moving the industry forward, rather than participation as a quid pro quo. We are grateful to those Benefactors who helped us get this idea started. This year we welcome FRONTEO and the Clutch Group as new Benefactors. We hope that other organizations will want to participate as Benefactors as the year moves on.
- LTPI project deliverables depend on participation by members willing to share their time and expertise. LTPI has several projects in development for which member volunteers are needed. LTPI will actively recruit new and existing members to staff those projects this year. LTPI encourages members who want to participate, both to learn and to socialize, as part of the project teams. We also hope that you will invite friends to participate. More people means LTPI can work on more projects.
- LTPI will continue to develop the partnerships mentioned above and to examine other partnership opportunities. LTPI will attempt to find win-win situations for our members to attain reduced costs for attending partner events, for joining other organizations, etc.
- LTPI is actively developing a Law School Outreach program. LTPI has noticed the aging of the e-discovery community as well as the dearth of both information and opportunity for newcomers to the community. The Law School Outreach program for students (particularly those close to graduation) is a critical project to engage the next generation of lawyers and e-discovery professionals. LTPI believes that as the e-discovery industry and intersection of law and technology evolves, it will be essential that up-and- coming practitioners have access to resources from a networking, internship, and ultimately job market perspective.
Get Involved and Make a Difference
- Become a member...renew annually!
- Access our Knowledge Center.
- Suggest a new project.
- Get involved—join a committee or Special Project Group.
- Attend events hosted by LTPI or our Partners.
- Be an advocate.
Join or renew your membership online! For further information, or if you have any questions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.