One of the most popular staples of the litigation support community is a Yahoo Group called The Litigation Support List. Back in the old days, among our fellow colleagues, we used to simply call it “the listserve”. This is back when listserves were trendy and before Yahoo Groups existed. Lucky for me, the listserve was created within the first two years of my litigation support career. There are over 9,000 members across the world. I have been a member for over 10 years and I still receive all of the individual e-mails in my Inbox on a daily basis. I've included a screenshot of the message history over the years to give you an idea of the monthly activity.
I remember one evening years ago. I was working late at the office as usual. Around 8:00 PM, someone from a southern state posted a Summation question and sounded desperate. I responded right away with my suggestions. That person was so grateful. I have had my own share of questions over the years and the group has been there for me.
For someone who is new to the industry, it can be a gold mine of information shared among peers. It is fully searchable so if you have a question, you can see if someone already asked it in the past. Even if you only monitor the information flow and never chime in, you can learn. But the true value of the group is when you get stuck or when you really have no idea how to address an issue you have. The really cool thing is that there are seasoned litigation support professionals including some with specific niches, like trial presentation or restoring backup tapes or Lotus Notes, that will be happy to respond within hours of your question.
Another use of the group is to ask for feedback on specific software before making a purchase for your firm. Similarly, some use the group to ask for feedback about a particular vendor before hiring them. Even another use that comes up often is when someone needs to get access to a service provider in another area of the country and they're looking for recommendations from colleagues in that local area.
One thing I've noticed over the years is that newbies are always welcome to ask newbie questions and they are greeted with helpful and encouraging responses. This is why I always recommend this group as a resource for newbies.
There are some weeks where a serious debate can go on and on and on. There are moderators of the group that make sure everyone remains respectful in the midst of their passionate dialog.
Below is a description of the group. You need a Yahoo account to sign up for the group, but you can then redirect all of the e-mails to any other e-mail address. The link is http://finance.groups.yahoo.com/group/litsupport/. Check it out today!
For those already in litigation support, do you have a story to share where this group was useful to you?