Most law firm offices need a tune up now and then, but where do you start? You could hire a cleaning service to come in once a month to tidy up. Or you could optimize things on the cheap with regular degaussing. Degaussing is the art of reducing electromagnetic buildup. It has typically been used in the past for computer monitors and battleships. Because degaussing battleships is above your pay grade, concentrate on how to degauss officer computer monitors and other stuff, including staff. Here’s how.
The Degauss Button. Many external computer monitors have a handy degauss button. For best results, push it.
On/Off Button. Most modern monitors got rid of the degauss button, apparently to increase productivity in the office. Instead, newer monitors degauss when you turn the screen on or off. For best results, find the on/off button. Push it.
Other Methods. Don’t worry if your computer monitor does not have a degauss button (or if you’ve recently upgraded to an auto-degaussing monitor. There are plenty of other ways to degauss, such as with a soldering gun, plugback transformer, or a drill rigged up with a magnet. But don’t just take a handful of refrigerator magnets and wave them around in front of the screen. That could poke someone’s eye out.
Other Things to Degauss. Unfortunately, degaussing a monitor will not degauss the entire office. There will still be things to do to reduce electromagnetic buildup around you. For staff, ask them to strip down to their undergarments and roll around on magnetic balls. Be aware, though, that some people report “electromagnetic hypersensitivity,” so get appropriate waivers first before asking staff to strip down. Or purchase a degaussing paddle. For around $600, it’s a great investment to degauss things quickly, efficiently, and legally.
[box type=”alert”]Important Note. We recently purchased a degaussing paddle and, while we used it successfully on most things in the office, including Ninja Dog, we subsequently discovered that our VHS tapes had been erased. Accordingly, if you have magnetic media such as dictation tapes, be careful when using a degausser around them.[/box]
john paul george and richard says
The NSA/CSS Degausssing paddle has been an integral part of my smallfirm practice for quite some time. For me, it is not simply a cleaning device, it is an important ligitation tool.
As a litigator, I am often faced with the incredibly burdensome task of dealing with e-discovery. If my clients were to take all the time needed to fully comply with the ridiculous requests of the plaintiff’s bar, they would not have the time to run their crib and car seat business.
So, when the situation demands it, I simply suggest that they send me all the computer hard drives in their office. Then, I use the Degaussing paddle to neatly arrange the hard drives on my desk. I then send the hard drives back to the client with a strong warning about the dangers of a fire in their file room. I wait a week. Then I respond to the discovery with the name and address of my client and an explanatory note that no other information is available. It makes the journey to the truth ever so much more pleasant.
As much as I love my NSA/CSS paddle, the hair stylist for my dog Enoch simply raved about the Applied Magnetics Labratory AML-6KG degaussing paddle. Perhaps you could test severall paddles and report your findings?
C. Hank Peters says
I think a product review is a great idea. We did one on the Swingline stapler. Seems like a degaussing paddle is a natural next one. Stay tuned.