When dates can be changed this easily, why bother?

One of the discussions I was involved in at class this week, was about metadata, and the increasing desire of attorneys to always get it, even when they don’t understand what it is, or when it’s not at all relevant. It’s just one of those things that some people heard was important, and so now they want it all the time.

One of the arguments, of course, is that they want to show a file had been modified or created after the fact. Of course, when it’s ridiculously easy to change those dates, I have to wonder if it’s even worth trying to find that kind of smoking gun.

I’m not saying there aren’t times, and certain types of metadata, where it’s important, but it’s rarely come into play in any cases I’ve seen, and the typical expectations about created and modified dates are way off base, given the tools available to change them.

Maybe it’s time we all learned a bit more about metadata and how reliable it is.

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