Context Panel

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What is the context panel?

The context panel allows you to quickly identify and view documents that are related to the document you are currently viewing. There are four contexts, or types of document relationships, that are shown in the context panel:

  • Duplicates and near-duplicates: Everlaw displays duplicates down to 95% similarity.
  • The next is the path explorer view. You can explore the parent folders, or directories, that contain the document you are currently viewing. If the document you are viewing contains attachments, you can also see the attachments in this view.
  • Email threads: If your document is an email that is part of a larger email chain, you can see other emails in the chain along with any attachments to those emails.
  • Versions: You can see different versions of the document, if any (translated versions of foreign language documents, produced and pre-produced documents, etc.).

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Where is the context panel and how is it organized?

The context panel is located on the left side of the review window. The right edge of the panel contains icons that allow you to navigate to different contexts. By default, the context panel is collapsed when you first open the review window.

  • To open the context panel, click on any of the icons.
  • To collapse the context panel, click the “←” icon in the upper right corner of the context panel.
  • To undock the context panel, click the “undock” icon to the right of the collapse icon. Undocking will allow you to drag the context panel to another position in the review window.

Within each context (duplicates, attachment families, file structure, email threads, versions), you can see a list of the documents in that context. The parent document of any context is listed at the top. You can also distinguish the status of documents in the context panel using the following convention:

  • The document you are currently viewing will have a blue background.
  • The document that you first opened can be distinguished by the blue bookmark icon.
  • Documents you have already viewed will have a gray background.
  • Documents you have not yet viewed will have a white background.

Clicking on a document will pull up the content, metadata, and review information (coding, rating, bindering, etc.) in the review window. This allows you to quickly review documents related to the one you originally opened. Changing to a different context will automatically switch the displayed content and information to that of the original document you opened.

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On occasion, you might want to open a document family in a new results table based on the context you are currently viewing.  Instead of building a new search to retrieve the document family, you can click on the magnifying glass icon in the context panel.  This will open the group you are viewing as a new search.  Your current and previous searches will be saved as search cards on the homepage, so you don't have to worry about losing your previous search.  

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Applying the same review decisions to all documents within a context

You may want to code some, or all, of the documents in a particular context, such as a duplicate family, attachment family, or email thread, the same for the purposes of consistency. You can do so via the “update selected” button which appears at the bottom of the list of documents in a given context. To select documents to apply the group action to, click on the three-dot menu in the top right of the context panel and select “Show Checkboxes.” By default, all documents in a context are selected and will be affected by the group action. You can deselect any documents that you do not wish to affect. You can also choose “Select All” or “Select None” from the three-dot menu. If you want to easily include duplicates in the batch update, simply expand the duplicates by clicking the correct link on the document label(s) in the context you are viewing.

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Clicking the “update selected” button will bring up the batch coding panel. The panel is prefilled with the current coding status of the original document you opened. You can add labels into one of two categories: add or remove. Labels in the “add” category will be applied to the documents while labels in the “remove” category will be removed if they are applied to the documents the group action is affecting.

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An asterisk will appear by any document that has been updated in the context panel through a batch action.

To select a label to add, click once on the label in the body of the coding panel; to select a label to remove, click twice on the label. The labels will appear in the correct category in the summary at the top of the coding panel. In addition, you can visually distinguish the status of labels using the following convention:

  • Labels with a gray background will not be applied to the document(s) once the changes are executed and saved.
  • Labels with white backgrounds and green text/outlines will be added to the document once the changes are executed and saved.
  • Labels with white backgrounds and red text/outlines will be removed from the document once the changes are executed and saved.

Once you are done selecting your combination of labels, click “apply” to save your changes.  A notification will appear to let you know that your changes have been applied.

 

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The duplicates context

To view the duplicates context, click on the duplicates icon, which shows two overlapping pieces of paper.

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The duplicates context displays duplicate documents down to 95% similarity. Next to the Bates number of each document, you can see the degree of similarity to the document you originally opened. The fraction underneath the duplicates icon displays the number of exact duplicates over the total number of duplicates in the system, with duplicate being defined as documents that have a similarity percentage of 95% or more relative to the document you originally opened.

 

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File path explorer context

Reviewing documents in the context of their file structure can be a valuable way to find additional responsive documents. In other words, if you find a responsive email while reviewing documents, it’s possible that other documents belonging to that email’s custodian are responsive as well. You can use a document’s file path to view and understand its relationship to other documents in a dataset’s file structure. To learn more about file paths in Everlaw, see this file path article.

The path explorer icon looks like a folder and will appear automatically for a document that has no attachments. Clicking on it will display your document among the other members of its subdirectory. If your document has attachments, an attachments icon, shaped like a paperclip, will be visible initially, instead of the path explorer icon. Clicking on it will display any attachments associated with the document you are viewing. 

 

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If your document has multiple attachments, you will be able to sort the attachments by name or file type.

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To start navigating through your document’s directory, click on the navigation bar near the top of the context panel. This bar will display the name of the subdirectory that you are currently in. For a document with attachments (for example, an email with attachments) the subdirectory is the parent document itself. For a document without any attachments, the navigation bar will display the subfolder that contains the document you are viewing.

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Clicking on the navigation bar will also prompt a menu that displays the entire file path for the document that you are currently viewing. The top directory will correspond to the custodian that was assigned upon upload to the dataset containing your document. The next-level directory will correspond to the name your dataset was assigned when it was uploaded to Everlaw. Neither the custodian nor the dataset fields will be present in your documents’ file path values, since they were not part of the dataset’s original file structure, but they have been made visible in the navigation menu so that you can explore various datasets linked to the same custodian.

You can click directly on a subdirectory name to be taken there, or navigate upwards through parent directories by clicking on the “up” arrow. You can also click on the “back” arrow to return to your previous location. Finally, you can click “Go to original Doc" in the bottom right corner of the navigation menu in order to return to the document you were originally viewing.

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Navigating to a parent directory will display the contents of that directory. This may be a list of documents or subfolders, or a mix of both. A button by the name of the subfolder will display the number of documents it contains. A similar button will also appear by documents that contain attachments.

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You can click on a subfolder or document family to display it in the context tab. Clicking on an individual document will display that document in the review window. If you have navigated upwards through several layers of parent directories, you will need to drill down through the various layers to return to the subdirectory that you were originally viewing. However, you can always navigate back to the document you originally opened by clicking “Go to original Doc." 

If a document has duplicates on Everlaw, a tooltip saying "[x] other paths” will appear when you hover over that document in the navigation tab. You can click on the help text to view a list of the document’s duplicate paths, and select a path to view that copy of the document.

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If you open a subdirectory or document family that contains many folders or documents, you may see that the contents have been divided into groups. Each group is identified by an italicized bracket. The groups appear because Everlaw is best equipped to display folders or directories that contain fewer than 100 items. If a folder or directory contains more than 100 items, an extra level of virtual directories is created, and the items are organized alphabetically or numerically into the directories based on their first character(s). These virtual directories will be indicated by helptext at the top of the directory list that indicates that your folders or documents have been grouped.

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The email threading context

To view the email threading context, click on the envelope icon. Email threads are displayed in chronological order, with the first email in the thread appearing at the top.

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Attachments can be viewed within the email thread as well. This gives you a truer sense of the context of your email thread and its components.

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Attachments will always appear below their parent email, as seen above (#1437.1 and #1438.1 are attachments to Robyn’s email). You can also quickly tell how many attachments and emails there are in an email thread by looking at the numbers below the email threading icon. The number to the left of the line is the number of emails and the number to the right of the line is the number of attachments. In the example above, there is one email in the thread and two attachments.

The email threading context also shows duplicate emails and their attachments. Duplicate emails are displayed underneath the original email, and will have the word "dupe" by the bates number. You can collapse or expand the list of duplicate emails by pressing the blue link at the bottom of the original document card that tells you how many dupes of itself exists.

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In addition, Everlaw can also detect and display the existence of “extracted emails.” “Extracted” emails are emails that appear somewhere in the body of the email chain, but were not produced as standalone documents in your document set. For example, let’s say James emails his team, and that email is produced. Jo replies all to James’s email, but that email is not produced. Adam then replies to Jo’s email, and his reply is produced. Because the content of Jo’s email is is present in the produced version of Adam’s email, Everlaw knows of its existence, and displays it as an extracted email.

 

Below is an example of an extracted email:

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In the example above, the email preceding Bruce’s message to Phillip was not produced, but its content is present in Bruce’s email.

Everlaw’s email threading displays both replies to, and forwards of, the original email. Anytime an email is replied to, or forwarded, it creates a new branch distinguished by colored bands at the left edge of the email.

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The parent email of the above thread, for example, is an email that Karen sent to Jeff. Jeff replied in the thread. Later on, Joseph replied separately to both Jeff and Karen’s emails. Joseph’s reply to Karen, which occurred sometime after Jeff’s reply to Karen, has a pink band and is located on a separate branch of the thread. This signifies that Karen’s original email (the “parent email”) has branched into two conversations: Jeff-Joseph and Karen-Jeff.

This color-coding and branching can be highly useful if you have to keep track of complex threads that involve many replies to a parent email.

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In the thread shown above, the parent email, from Dana Davis, has several replies. Each separate reply, including Brian’s two separate replies and the extracted email replies, is color-coded with a different band.. (The first chronological response/forwarding of a parent email is always colored the same as the parent email, regardless of who the sender is.) Brian’s earlier reply, colored with a baby blue band, received two separate replies from Dana. To show that Brian-Dana 1 and Brian-Dana 2 are two separate conversations, each exchange has a differently-colored band (Brian-Dana 1 is colored baby blue, while Brian-Dana 2 is colored bright purple).

As with documents in the other context panel views, individual emails in a thread will receive colored bands on the right side of the email once they have been rated. In the example below, Wendy's email has been rated Warm, which is why an orange band is displayed to the right of the email.

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You can highlight inclusive emails by checking the “highlight inclusive emails” box below the list of documents. The labels of non-inclusive emails will become grayed out. This will identify the email that is the last email in a branch. Because it is the last email in the branch, all previous emails should appear in the body of the document. Reviewing inclusive emails can drastically cut down on the number of emails you have to review.

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The versions context

You can access the versions context by clicking on the clock icon. The versions context allows you to pull up different versions of the same document. This can include pre-produced and produced versions, original and translated versions, etc. You can see a count of the total different versions of a particular document by looking at the number below the versions icon.

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When you produce documents on Everlaw, your original and produced version can be viewed here as well. For more information on producing your own documents on Everlaw, view our production articles

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