Because of you, our client, ABI continues to grow in the court reporting industry with increased momentum, in what has become a very competitive market.
We sincerely hold our relationship with you in high regard, and we will continue to do all we can to serve you in the best possible way.
Please answer these five questions to help us ensure that this e-newsletter continues to be a useful discovery resource and that it provides you with helpful information.
We wish you the best in 2009, and we hope you and your firm continue to prosper and grow throughout the year.
Tips and Tricks for Working with Court Reporters
By Patricia Lyons, U.S. District Court in Arizona
As a court reporter for more than 20 years, I have learned quite a bit about what it takes to make a good record. There are steps you can take to work well with court reporters and to obtain the best record for your client.
First, let me lay some foundation. Court reporters are professionals who have gone to college or vocational school to obtain their degrees or certificates. Most states, but not all, require certification. In Arizona, state certification is required; national certification is voluntary. Certified court reporters are required to obtain continuing education annually and to comply with a code of ethics.
Court reporters are unbiased and independent keepers of the record.
In addition to writing what you say, we are writing punctuation and identifying speakers. We also write notes to ourselves (perhaps to note the marking of an exhibit, correct a misstroke or make a note to check a spelling, or to get that exhibit from which the deponent was reading). If you have any questions about what we do or how we do it, feel free to ask the reporter.
There is no magic to obtaining the best possible record—and to becoming your court reporter’s favorite client. Here are some suggestions.
Audio mining is a speaker-independent, speech recognition technique that is used to search audio or video files for occurrences of spoken words or phrases. The speech recognition search engine identifies words or phonemes that are spoken within the file and generates a searchable index that includes a time stamp for each important word or phoneme and its locations within the file. Essentially, it creates indices of words or speech sounds. Thus, it can enable users to search audio and video files similar to the way they use search engines to search the Internet.
Audio mining software uses two basic methods, both consisting of indexing and searching phases. Large Vocabulary Continuous Speech Recognition (LVCSR) analyzes words or phrases to generate an index; phonetic audio mining analyzes sound patterns to generate an index and stores the phonetic content of the speech, rather than information about words.
An attorney representing himself in a case for recovery of his fees had his case dismissed because he failed to appear for a scheduled court hearing. He subsequently filed a motion requesting relief from the judgment of dismissal based upon the theory that it wouldn’t be fair to penalize the client for the mistakes of his attorney. Defendants filed their opposition to the motion, which included the following excerpt:
“Uniquely, Plaintiff herein, an attorney litigating in pro se, is alleging that he has caused his client (himself) irreparable harm for which he should not be made to bear the mistakes of his attorney (also himself).
Defendants, jokingly, have dubbed this the ‘Sybil’ defense.”