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Ed Tittel – An IT Expert Witness

My Win10.guru partner Ed Tittel was recently interviewed by Mason Lerner from SpiceWorks about how he became an expert witness and what it is all about. You can read the full interview here: Extreme IT: Expert witness testifies about his role in patent suits

A quote from said interview:

“In 2009, I got a call from some attorneys in Pittsburgh who thought it just might be possible that somebody who could write a For Dummies book about HTML could also explain how it works to a jury,” Tittel explained. “They flew me up to Pittsburgh and had me talk to them for a day and decided that I would be okay to put in front of a jury, and I ended up getting hired to work on the Soverain Software shopping cart patent case.”

“That’s how I got started doing expert witness work, which basically involves looking at patents and coming up with technical arguments as to why or why not certain elements of patent claim language are valid or invalid, or infringed upon or not, depending on which side of the case you’re working on,” he added.

In one of our almost daily chats, I told Ed I would like to know more about what it is to be an expert witness, what it takes. He explained it shortly in one sentence:

Working as an expert witness requires the ability to understand technical topics in great detail, but then also to be able to explain such things using simple, everyday language.

According to Ed, the most important characteristic for aspiring expert witnesses to cultivate is a calm, helpful demeanour. When in the courtroom, the way a person sits, looks, and acts is every bit as important as what that person says. It also helps to be unfailingly polite, even — in fact, especially — when under brutal or hostile cross-examination.

When being questioned under oath, it’s important to answer only the question that was asked, without adding to or elaborating on the subject matter. Ed told me that the old Army adage “Never volunteer” applies strongly here as in “Never volunteer additional information.” Anything and everything you say is subject to questioning, examination, or even ridicule. The less you say, the less of an attack surface you present to the opposition.

Being proud of my partner and dear friend, I wholeheartedly recommend that you read the full SpiceWorks interview!



Author: Kari Finn

A former Windows Insider MVP, Kari started in computing in the mid 80’s writing code for VAX / VMS systems. Since then, he’s worked in a variety of IT positions. He specializes in Windows image capture, customization, repair and deployment as well as Hyper-V virtualization. Kari is a proud Team Member at number #1 Windows site TenForums.com.

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