Today’s Information Governance PowerPoint Slide: The Hard Drive in the Haystack

PowerPoint Slide Image: The Hard Drive in the Haystack

In today’s slide, we explore the simple but powerful statistic that,  for every 1044 pages of evidence preserved, captured, copied, collated, reviewed and handled in e-discovery, only 1 is actually produced. What does this metric tell us? Well, certainly it tells us that there are . . .  ahem . . . some problems with e-discovery. But of greater interest –  at least to me –  is that it shows how profoundly we are failing at information governance. After all, if all of this stuff didn’t exist in the first place, we wouldn’t be spending millions of unnecessary dollars to handle this junk (like a TSA agent?) in the first place. How much of this content is duplicate or near-duplicate? How much of it could have been –  and should have been –  thrown away years before litigation commenced?

On the first question, some estimate that the amount of duplicate information in the known digital universe is 75% (IDC). On the latter question, when we assess our client’s information environment, it is not uncommon to find that over 50% of all content they have in storage is past its due date, and should have been –  according to the client’s own policies – tossed long ago.

Email me if you would like the orig­i­nal Pow­er­Point file. (btblair at You can find the report these numbers come from here (opens a PDF).

Happy Thanksgiving!


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