Searching for Profanity and Obscenity

Technical Note Subject

This technical note discusses searching for documents uploaded to the Lexbe eDiscovery Platform (LEP) that include profanity and obscenity.

Why Should you Search for Profanity?

It is amazing what supposedly intelligent people will include in email messages.  In litigation, use of obscenity and profanity can qualify the offending documents as "hot docs" or otherwise subject to attorney review and scrutiny.  In some cases, like employment law, profanity may support discrimination charges directly or indicate a hostile work environment.  Even in non-employments cases, emails including profanity may indicate the sender was emotional.  Many attorneys wish to review all emails from deponents or witnesses that include profanity for special review.

Using LEP to Search Profanity

Profanity Search Spreadsheet Template

Lexbe has created an Excel template called "Profanity Search Links Template" which is referenced and available upon request as noted below). The spreadsheet enables the user to search for profanity specifically (over 700 search terms are supported in the template). By enabling searches to be produced from a spreadsheet link, much time is saved in a large review. Within LEP, the document sets returning from search results can be mass tagged to Responsive, privilege, Hot Doc or any established custom document field with multi-doc edit. When the documents are opened in the document viewer from the search results, search terms are highlighted in the Hits and Text tabs.  

To execute each search, login to the case in LEP, download the "Profanity Search Links Template," and click on the corresponding group link (i.e. Profanity Search Group 1 of 10, Profanity Search Group 2 of 10, etc.).  The results will automatically populate directly on the Search page in LEP.  

Also included on the "Profanity Search Links Template" is a "Profanity Search Term Master List" which outlines each Profanity term included within the ten groups provided.  This can be found on the second sheet of the ""Profanity Search Links Template".

How to Set Up Saving & Sharing Searches

Another great tool available under the Search page is the Shared & Saved searches. A list of all searches is automatically saved in the database. The user may pin and share the most used searches, delete existing records or Cancel.

Shared. View shared searches under this section. To share or unshare searches with users in the current case, click the Edit button.  When the Shared/Pinned Searches dialog box appears check or uncheck the shared icon check-box. This option will share searches with all current users that have access to the case.
Pinned. Click the Edit hyperlink, select a recent search by the title, and use the check-box under the pin symbol to pin searches. Click OK to save the changes or Cancel. The pin icon will move the selected recent search up to the Pinned section. 
Recent. Shows the search history applied.  The screen displays the five most recent searches. Click the Edit hyperlink to view a full list of searches.

Requesting the Lexbe Profanity Search Spreadsheet.

If a Lexbe customer, email to request a copy of the Profanity Search Spreadsheet.  If you are not a current Lexbe customer, email to request a copy of the Profanity Search Spreadsheet.

Note: The Profanity and Search Tool is available only for Lexbe customers who are practicing U.S. attorneys and legal professionals, over the age of 18, for use in connection with legal document review.