2023 OFF Anatomy of a “Superstar” Deposition – Archived

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Anatomy of a "Superstar" Deposition:
David Boies vs. Bill Gates in U.S. vs. Microsoft

David Boies has received extraordinary praise: “the most brilliant litigator of his generation;” “the best trial lawyer in America;” “the Wall Street lawyer everyone wants;” “the Clarence Darrow of his generation;” “the Michael Jordan of the courtroom;” and much, much more. Using a score of video clips from the intensely contentious three-day deposition taken by America’s most lauded civil litigator of the world’s richest person (at the time, anyway) in the most high profile antitrust case in America since the US brought suit against John D. Rockefeller’s Standard Oil, this webinar will teach you THE correct paradigm for taking the very best “fact” witness deposition in every case for the rest of time. (See Reviews.) This program is an eye-opening analysis of the discipline of deposition cross-examination … a skill-set few litigators ever study, let alone master.

This webinar has 5 parts/5 videos. Total viewing time: approx. 6.5 hours. The agenda for each part is set out below. Links to the written materials – a 69-page PDF & a 9-page PDF – appear below each of the videos. To sample the quality of the videos – and the quality of the teaching – watch the webinar’s first 30 minutes in the below YouTube.

Webinar (all 5 parts): $0

   I agree that the webinar will be viewed by one attorney only.

Major Dramatis Personæ:

David Boies, Bill Gates, Stephen Houck

Minor Dramatis Personæ (many are very minor):

Michelangelo, Clarence Darrow, Ted Olson, John Sherman, John D. Rockefeller, Joel Klein, Thomas Penfield Jackson, Richard Posner, Bill Neukom, Napoleon Bonaparte, John Roberts, Marc Andreessen, Ken Auletta, Vince Lombardi, “Professor Charles W. Kingsfield,” “Perry Mason,” “Harry Merrill,” Chris Matthews, John Edwards, Dick Cheney, Steven Spielberg, “The Man With No Name,” Samuel Beckett, Marc Galanter, “Jack D. Ripper,” “Dr. Strangelove,” H. L. Mencken, Jonathan Harr, Sigmund Freud, John Travolta, Bryce Harper, “Constance Riley,” Steve Jobs, Homer, Damocles, Pericles, Brad Chase, cast of “Tombstone,” and Harry Houdini

Agenda for Part 1

  • Introduction: “Superstar deposer”
  • Introduction: U.S. vs. Microsoft
  • Case background & core case facts explained
  • Musante’s relevant biases
  • Deposition admonitions
  • Short video excerpts of depo Q&A
  • Competent deposer vs. formidable witness
  • Looong video excerpt of depo Q&A
  • Superstar deposer vs. formidable witness
  • Battle of labels: “threat” vs. “competitor”
  • Superstar’s approach to depositions
  • Evaluation of depo Q&A in “Pine Haven vs. Gates Plumbing”

Agenda for Part 2

  • Best case theory
  • Getting adverse deponent to “Yes”
  • Battleships
  • The Grand Unified Theory of Deposition Cross-Examination
  • The rule re saving “stuff” for surprise at trial
  • The rationale
  • Pre-trial considerations
  • At-trial considerations
  • Exceptions
  • Cross-Examination #101
  • Developing a rapport with adverse deponent

Agenda for Part 3

  • Developing a rapport with adverse deponent (cont.)
  • The ask-a-leading-question rule
  • Exceptions
  • Depo cross-examination decision tree
  • Lead to a provable lie
  • Lead to a damaging truth
  • Rhetoricate in the deposition
  • Noun-epithets & refrains

Agenda for Part 4

  • Word-hawking
  • Nearly every deposition-taker’s most significant failing
  • Evidentiary depositions vs. discovery depositions
  • Firewalling
  • interrogatory-like questions
  • wall-to-wall, ceiling-to-floor terms
  • enumeration
  • looping

Agenda for Part 5

  • Firewalling (cont.)
  • Detect a mediocre deposition in 60 seconds
  • Attacking deponent’s “inability” to provide an estimate
  • When saving impeachment evidence for trial makes sense
  • Attacking deponent’s persistent question-dodging