An article by Rob Robinson
Established in August of 2017, the Global Legal Blockchain Consortium (GLBC) is comprised of more than 140 large companies, law firms, software companies, and universities that have joined together to develop standards to govern the use of blockchain technology in the business of law. This growing consortium appears to provide an excellent and collaborative forum for legal industry professionals, to include those in the eDiscovery ecosystem, seeking to learn, develop, and deploy blockchain-centric solutions and services.
The mission of the GLBC as shared by David A. Fisher, a founder of the GLBC and also the founder of the blockchain company, Integra, is to organize and align global legal industry stakeholders to enhance the security, privacy, productivity, and interoperability of blockchain technology. Furthermore, the GLBC promotes a universal blockchain-based technology infrastructure for law.
Specifically, the consortium is focused on:
- Data integrity and authenticity for contracts, documents, and similar data.
- Data privacy and security for contracts, documents, and communications.
- Interoperability between large corporate legal departments and law firms.
- Productivity improvements and cost savings in the operation of legal departments and law firms.
- Use of blockchain to fortify and augment existing legal technology investments adding important functionality to legacy systems to extend their useful life.
As blockchain awareness, interest, and activity accelerates, organizations in the eDiscovery ecosystem such as HaystackID and Level 2 Legal Solutions have announced membership in the GLBC.*
“Blockchain is a foundational and transformational technology that is quickly changing business and legal landscapes,” shared Mike Bryant, operating advisor for HaystackID from Knox Capital. “With a demonstrated expertise in supporting the legal industry with eDiscovery domain expertise for all forms of electronically stored information, HaystackID sees the importance of investing time and resources to collaborate with leading legal and informational technology professionals on blockchain use cases and projects and is excited to now be a member of the GLBC.” [HaystackID Press Announcement]
“We are excited to join the GLBC and collaborate with the legal practitioners and technology leaders in GLBC,” said Level 2 Legal CEO Joey Seeber. “We are committed to investing time and resources into technology with the goal of extending value to our clients.” [Level 2 Legal Press Announcement]
Based on its mission focus, aggregation of experts across the legal industry, and collaboration opportunities, the GLBC promises to provide a unique forum for eDiscovery educators, experts, and organizations to:
- Understand the thought leadership and practical implementation of blockchain within the legal industry.
- Understand and consider use cases and implementations of blockchain for the improvement and expansion of eDiscovery capability.
- Understand and consider how blockchain tools, processes, and electronically stored information (ESI) can be audited and investigated as part of eDiscovery.
Additionally, the GLBC website provides an excellent portfolio of educational and development resources for legal industry professionals interested in increasing their knowledge of blockchain technologies. And for those legal professionals seeking more eDiscovery-centric educational information on distributed ledger technologies, several leading eDiscovery providers are beginning to regularly publish and present blockchain content and programs. Recent examples of these eDiscovery-centric published resources include:
- Relativity – Blockchains: New Opportunity and New Risk [Relativity Fest Recap]
- Epiq – How Distributed Ledger Technology Might Influence eDiscovery [Epiq Angle Blog]
- HaystackID – Blockchain and eDiscovery – Basics of Cryptocurrencies and Blockchain (Part One) and Investigations from Bitcoin to Blockchain (Part Two) [Webcast Series]
While many companies are still evaluating and determining use cases and market positions for their development, implementation, and support of distributed-ledger technologies, it does appear that leaders in the eDiscovery ecosystem are beginning to actively and earnestly pursue an understanding of how to address the educational, productization, and service opportunities and challenges presented by the foundational and transformational capability of blockchain. And as eDiscovery leaders explore the impact of blockchain on the legal industry, it is reasonable that they consider engaging with the Global Legal Blockchain Consortium as it appears to be a great starting place for understanding and collaborating about blockchain through the lens of law.
- The Global Legal Blockchain Consortium
- Starting Its Second Year, Global Legal Blockchain Group Unveils New Guides and World Tour of Briefings
*ComplexDiscovery joined the GLBC in September of 2018.