Tim Rollins, writing on the blog of e-discovery software company Exterro, turned to New York Times op-ed columnist Paul Krugman to make a point about self-preservation. Krugman, an economist, has a thing about “zombie doctrines.” Those are concepts, such as “supply-side economics,” a favorite Krugman target, that even a well-reasoned stake to the heart can’t seem to kill. The analog in e-discovery, Rollins writes, is self-preservation. He notes that the annual litigation trends survey from Norton Rose Fulbright found that almost half of organizations rely primarily on self-preservation in more than 75% of their matters. That alarms Rollins. He points to an Exterro webcast where 62% of the attendees said they most feared the spoliation risks associated with custodian self-preservation. The similarity to Krugman’s zombie doctrine, he said, is clear: “Despite widespread concerns over spoliation, self-preservation shambles on as a primary means of preserving ESI.”

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