10-06-00 Cyberlaw Journal
, in an article entitled "One Judge's Opinion: Delete Should Mean Delete" by Carl S. Kaplan, quotes Judge James M. Rosenbaum, U. S. District Court Judge, District of Minnesota, Minneapolis, who published an article in the summer issue of "The Green Bag
" entitled "In Defense of the DELETE Key."
Acknowledging that everyone makes mistakes, or is less than perfect, Judge Rosenbaum proposed a "cyber statute of limitations" of a six month-period for an isolated message. Thereafter, the Judge said, "deleted" documents should be legally considered electronic trash and not used as evidence of possible wrongdoing. The current system, which permits discovery of all deleted documents on a hard drive creates an atmosphere of "dangerous self-censorship." The judge did make an exception for messages from "someone who has exhibited a pattern of egregious behavior or communications."
"Since writing the piece, Judge Rosenbaum said he has received a few short notes from readers and a letter from a U.S. Court of Appeals judge who ‘thought it was an interesting idea.'"