Brad Harris, Hanzo: Case Law Summary: Court Holds That Parties Can’t Slack Off on Producing Slack Messages in Ediscovery

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Extract from Brad Harris’s article “Case Law Summary: Court Holds That Parties Can’t Slack Off on Producing Slack Messages in Ediscovery”

Court notes that for discovery, Slack messages are “generally comparable” to email. 

A recent case out of California brings to the forefront what every organization using collaboration applications like Slack needs to take note.  Although this case hinges on a proportionality argument, the clear take-away for me is the Court’s matter-of-fact conclusion that Slack communications are clearly relevant to discovery. 

Just like back in the early days of email, relying on a “don’t ask, don’t tell” strategy or a “not reasonably accessible” defense will simply not carry the day when responding to a discovery obligation.  That is why Hanzo has been delivering innovative solutions to address the challenges of collaboration applications head-on.

I anticipate we’ll see more findings like this order from the case of Benebone LLC v. Pet Qwerks, Inc., No. 8:20-cv-00850-AB-AFMx (C.D. Cal. Feb. 18, 2021). During the discovery phase of this intellectual property dispute, Pet Qwerks moved to compel the production of Benebone’s Slack messages that were responsive to its ediscovery requests. The court granted the motion after assessing the relevance and proportionality of Benebone’s Slack messages. 

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