Electronic Discovery: What is Linear Review?

What is linear review?

A “linear review” is a traditional review of documents within an electronic discovery review platform.This means that the legal team, review team, or investigators, will look at one document after another, ordered by date or keyword relevance.  This is very much a brute force method to reviewing the documents, looking at one document after another, until the entire data set is complete.

If the aim is to review the entire mail box of one custodian, this is probably the best method of conducting the review.

But if the aim is to find documents relevant to a breach of contract across company, over a a 5 year period where there could well be millions of documents, a linear review will either be hugely expensive or impossible to attempt, due to the time, resources, or costs involved.

In these large scale reviews, concept searching methods or “non-linear” review are often employed, as they are the only feasible method of approaching the task.

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2 Responses to “Electronic Discovery: What is Linear Review?”

  1. Electronic Discovery: The Benifits of Concept Searching Tools « Data – Where is it? Says:

    […] Electronic Discovery: The Benifits of Concept Searching Tools Posted on May 24, 2009 by 585 Non-Linear review or concept searching differs in methodology but, not the  final aim, of a linear review. […]

  2. Attenex Patterns History – The Critical First Year | On the Way to Somewhere Else Says:

    […] found with their current method, and he found several responsive documents that were missed by the linear review process.  Everyone was blown away at the implications and at the big jump in productivity.  With this […]


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