LegalTech 2018: What’s the Buzz?

What are the buzzwords at LegalTech? In years past, a preoccupation with machine learning algorithms applied to text put “TAR” on the marquee at Legaltech for Technology-Assisted Review.  Later, “Cybersecurity” took its place.  They are both still on the agenda, and there are more. Here’s a little rundown:

LegalTech 2018 Popular Topics:


In his Keynote address this morning, former Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson identified cybersecurity as the single biggest threat to the welfare of our country, ahead of even terrorism and the downward spiral of how our government has been functioning.  “GDPR” and “AI” have eclipsed them this year as hot topics for panels and discussions. “Cybersecurity” shows up ten times in the LegalWeekShow agenda.


The General Data Privacy Regulations, or GDPR is the data privacy regime for the 31 member states of the European Economic Area, which includes 28 EU members plus Iceland, Norway, and Leichtenstein. The EU in general is becoming more strict in terms of its citizens’ rights to privacy, and the GDPR standardizes and strengthens privacy rights and requirements across the EEA.

GDPR affects how we manage multinational data in US discovery, particularly in eDiscovery, because just the presence of a name or email address invokes a privacy right not found in the US. More broadly, GDPR affects the business communication, interaction, and storage and use of data for every company that sells on the Internet or otherwise to customers in the EEA. There are five distinct offerings in the agenda.

D4 and Special Counsel have published a wallet-sized “Passport to GDPR Success” (contact us and we’ll send you a few). We are featuring our staffing, advice, and assistance to general counsel in the area of GDPR compliance.  We are offering our assistance for discovery in the EEA with development of Consent and collection protocols and review of ESI in the EEA through our London offices and our instances there of Relativity and Relativity One.

Artificial Intelligence

AI has already been pressed into service for insights into volumes of text and stores of structured big data. These uses extend from basic business needs to the evaluation of human behavior in the context of data collections for litigation and investigations. AI holds a particular area of growth for law firms to mine their case and transactional data to gain insights into business trends, client service, productivity, and profitability.

Artificial Intelligence also shows up now in the context of the “Internet of Things”. The speed of data processing and connectivity have made possible, for example, the autonomous vehicle, the real-time multi-language earbud translator, and the long-distance AI-assisted medical diagnostician. A half dozen panels on AI explore, among other things, the potential of AI enhancements to TAR, the ethics of AI deployment.

D4 and Special Counsel continue to explore, develop, and deploy advanced workflows using machine learning. These integrate advantages of concept indexing, Brainspace 6.0 CMML, (Continuous Multimodal Learning) and Relativity’s support vector machine predictive coding. They are deployed on reviews for production, compliance and government investigations, and the gap analysis and triage required for large incoming productions of ESI.


If you missed last year’s show, the idea of “LegalWeekShow” might be new. ALM has incorporated all of the tracks, themes and traditions of 37 years of LegalTech with parallel conferences for Legal CIO and Legal Marketing, all wrapped under the LegalWeek banner. According to ALM “LegalWeek New York brings together the entire team that manages the business of law to explore the Business and Regulatory trends, Technology, and Talent drivers impacting the industry.” There are more than 9,000 of us here!

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