Wednesday, August 12, 2020

The Art of Redacting

Confirming our suspicion that there is a bit of art in law, an article on the crafting necessary to redact information on privileged documents has just appeared. It makes sense, especially when one thinks of the drawings and paintings of Ellsworth Kelly and Blinky Palermo, as well as the photographs of John Baldessari.


(C.I.A. redacted document)’s Kenton Hutcherson explains: “In the old days, redacting privileged data from a document was simple. I would pull out my black Sharpie, cross out privileged words, and record the redaction on a privilege log…In today’s age of electronic data discovery, attorneys can no longer retain the same confidence.”


(Blinky Palermo, To the People of New York City, 1976-77)

The obvious difference of course is that, to our knowledge, neither Palermo or Kelly ever represented a client in a court of law, and, again, to our knowledge, never painted or drew on electronic documents.

Hutcherson continues: “Attorneys often accidentally produce privileged client information because they typically only redact for privilege on a computer by placing white or black boxes over the privileged portion of an e-document’s TIFF or PDF image…The problem is that it neglects the privileged information contained in the corresponding text file.”

See the full story here.



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