According to new federal rules that went into effect Dec. 1, schools, businesses, and other organizations are required to keep tabs on all eMail, instant messages (IM), and other digital communications produced by their employees.

The rules, first approved by the U.S. Supreme Court in April, have been widely reported as important for businesses and other for-profit enterprises. But, according to legal experts familiar with the case, the High Court's ruling also applies to public schools and other nonprofit organizations.

The ruling--which states that any entity involved in litigation must be able to produce "electronically stored information" during the discovery process--the process...

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