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A Metadata Cleanup

by Everlaw


Ediscovery – and therefore, litigation – relies on metadata. Metadata is data that describes a document; for example, the date a document was created, the author of an email, the file type, or the custodian. This information helps organize, locate, contextualize, and understand documents

Without it, predictive coding is less effective, searching is less robust, and review is less complete. The more accurate the metadata, the easier and faster the review process is.

The challenge is that metadata is often inconsistent. Productions from different parties often use different names for the same concepts. This results in time lost syncing up multiple versions of the same thing, repeat work, data inaccuracy, miscommunications, and a lot of frustration.

To address this problem, we’re introducing canonical metadata. This new feature takes the different metadata fields in a document set, compares them to see which ones refer to the same things, and combines them into a set of common fields. It’s like deduplication for metadata fields! This results in:

  • Time saved

  • Duplicate work avoided

  • Data accuracy improved

  • Sanity regained

Here’s one example of this feature in action: A field may be called “Created” in one document set and “Creation Time” in another. In the past, sorting or searching for this meant having to create groupings of these two redundant metadata values for each desired action.

Now, the two fields are automatically combined across the data set, preventing the need for a time-consuming workaround.

Canonical metadata allows you to begin review with cleaner, more consistent data – even if you receive a messy collection of documents from legal hold or from opposing counsel. This metadata standardization also lays the groundwork for other features we’re excited to introduce later this year. We can’t wait to share them with you!

If you’re not already a user, just email us to see this feature – and our entire litigation platform – in action.