Derek Giles: Timeframe Principal
Last week A colleague & I attended Legaltech 2013 that was held in an old-looking , soon-to- be restored Hilton in the heart of the big apple. It was quite different from the predicted assumptions that we have elaborated throughout the years.
It is easy to get frustrated at times by the gigantic number of vendors that dived into the ever-rewarding e-discovery market, and this unjustified commercialization of the concept. On the bright spot, several practice management systems were introduced to the consultants and techies ….. just to keep things interesting. Some Exhibitors showed great energy and marketed their products in a very attractive way, e.g. Thomson Reuters stand presented a unified picture of the various applications, unlike past years they seemed to be comfortable in their own skin. I firmly believe that after several years of acquisitions, the company is now linking together all the pieces to present the technology as an actual solution. There were also a number of new players and people exploring the legal market some of the most entertaining were international vendors bringing their products to the corporate realm. To my surprise Several Asian technology companies were present to showcase their solution to the lucrative north-American market. A number of Indian based companies…needed a little boost in terms of their marketing firepower!!
So… we mentioned the energetic guys ….now let’s talk about the disappointing folks. From my perspective, I thought several vendors lacked dynamism, or motivation, maybe because of the ridiculous lack of space or the dominance of ediscovery solutions by the big players in the market.
The keynotes were unfortunately legally biased and ediscovery. There must be very big money in this but by its nature it is us biased. Elsewhere in the world judicial activism and community pressure reduces litigation costs. Keynotes should usually relate to the subject of the conference ,however the mesmerizing part was the fact that technology was rarely mentioned , while its core mentioned where religion/north-east/bad jokes /ethics stand within the practice of law …yeah not very surprising!!