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CourtScribes at forefront of court reporting disruption in Jacksonville.

Court reporting isn’t just stenography any more, and Jacksonville’s CourtScribes is at the forefront of change.

Jacksonville court reporting agency CourtScribes is among the leaders bringing technological disruption to an ancient field.

According to CourtReportingSchoolsOnline.net:

“As with any industry, making the customer happy is the driving force behind development and growth.  In the field of court reporting, the primary customer base consists of attorneys, paralegals, and judges.  When a court reporter can make the jobs of these groups of people easier, job security for the court reporter is achieved.

“From realtime reporting to online transcript repositories, technological advancement in court reporting has progressed from being a mere convenience to actually becoming an essential part of the judicial process.  These advancements not only save time, but, as a result, save considerable amounts of money for everyone.  Consider a paralegal who is working with a very lengthy transcript.  If that transcript can be viewed on a monitor and have its exhibits electronically linked to it, it saves the paralegal a significant amount of time, which saves the attorney time, which saves the judge time, and which ultimately saves taxpayers money by reducing the time spent dealing with paperwork in a courtroom setting.”

Court reporting is undergoing big changes, making it a surprisingly attractive field, according to the Wall Street Journal. The Journal reports:

“Court reporters do more than just transcribe legal proceedings for courts or legislatures, said Nativa Wood, president of the National Court Reporters Association. They also caption broadcast television shows and public and school events for the hearing-impaired, as well as providing real-time transcripts for everything from business meetings to legal depositions.

“The field, which many like to date back to ancient scribes, requires training in typing as many as 225 words a minute on a stenotype machine, a chorded keyboard used to transcribe spoken word into shorthand. Students can learn to use the machine in programs offered by trade schools and community colleges.

“Depending on the industry, their experience and the amount of work they take on, court reporters can make upward of $95,000 a year. Bureau of Labor Statistics data show that the median annual pay for court reporters in 2016 was $51,320. Median pay for all high-school graduates without further education, meanwhile, has hovered around $30,000 over the past several years, according to the National Center for Education.”

NBC also sees growth in the court reporting field, in part thanks to technological changes. The network reports:

Court reporting not only exists, it’s expanding.

Most new reporting jobs are outside the courtroom, doing depositions or closed captioning. There is a new federal initiative to provide captioning services to hearing-impaired students. The pay for those jobs can range from $35 an hour up into six figures. One current opening for a court reporter in San Francisco starts above $100,000, plus benefits.

“It’s absolutely a growth industry,” said Margaret Ortiz, who runs the court reporting program at West Valley College in Saratoga, California. “You are your own boss, even if you’re in court.”

For Jacksonville court reporting company Courtscribes, technology is a big part of growth and the job goes way beyond mere court stenography.

The company is a leader in bringing the court reporting industry into the digital age, writes entrepreneur and professor Barry Unger.

He writes: “CourtScribes is changing the court reporting industry by using Internet age technology to create the official record of court proceedings, using remote transcriptionists and charging attorneys up to 50% less than what they now pay, and as … a disruptive technology will not only improve the quality of services, but also ultimately extend and even democratize the use of services that are today often restricted only to high profile or high dollar value cases.”

The disruptive digital technology pioneered by the Jacksonville court reporting agency is gaining popularity, according to CourtReporterEDU.org., which writes:

“Proponents of digital court reporting enjoy the high-quality audio that it captures, and most digital recording systems have a number of audio backups to ensure that the transcript is complete.

“Digital court reporting also has the ability to provided multi-track recording, which can prove to be very useful for understanding everyone’s statements, particularly when people are talking over one another.

“Digitally recorded proceedings can also be easily delivered via the Internet, thereby saving the court money on shopping costs and hassles as a result of shopping delays.

“Many attorneys appreciate working videos, as they often help them examine both verbal and non-verbal reactions of witnesses and defendants, including gestures, body language, facial expressions, and eye contact, and many judges and attorneys see digital recording as a way to decrease the risk of inaccurate transcriptions.”

CourtScribes’ process works in the following way:

  • An experienced court reporter oversees recording equipment and takes simultaneous notes.  Digital annotations are time-linked to the recording so it’s a simple process to find and listen to actual testimony.
  • Each primary participant in the proceeding is given a discreet sound channel so that each voice is distinct, eliminating confusion caused by cross talk. “This voice isolation feature permits a full and accurate transcription of exactly what was said — and who said it — because each channel can be listened to individually,” Unger writes.
  • Because of the quality of the recordings, court reporters are less obtrusive than in more traditional court stenography. Unger writes, “The recording process captures all words exactly as spoken — then in transcription the audio can be replayed as needed to verify verbatim accuracy.”
  • Lawyers or other interested parties can obtain copies of the digital recording as well as the transcript, and, “With digital annotations directly “hot-linked” to the audio, points of interest are located quickly and efficiently,” Unger writes.
  • Notes and audio files can be delivered over the Internet. Unger writes, “Both log notes and audio files are transmitted over the Internet, reducing or eliminating shipping costs and delivery delays. Storage and archiving are efficient and compact. When the audio and log notes are saved as computer files, there are no cassettes to store, nor files of reporters’ paper notes to maintain.”

For customers of Jacksonville court reporting company CourtScribes, the company’s technological prowess means a better price.

Unger writes: “Court reporting agencies in Florida charge both parties ordering a Daily transcript as much as $10/page or about $2,500 a day or about $25,000 for a two week trial to create official transcripts delivered the next morning. CourtScribes provides up to 50% off the Daily transcripts. The company charges ~$5/page or ~$1,250 a day or ~$12,500 for a two week trial to create the Daily transcript for both sides (saving each side as much $12,500 on a two week trial). Twenty of these trials a year would save as much as $250,000 for each side. CourtScribes is able to leverage its process and technology to provide live and ondemand video or audio recording to attorneys in the office at marginal cost. Attorneys not only benefit from a less expensive transcript but the video and/or audio recording provides them with a more accurate and complete record. The digital recording reveals the demeanor of a witness and whether, for instance, they were being sarcastic. In addition, the live video and/or audio feed can be watched by attorneys in the office, allowing the office team to monitor the proceedings and more effectively assist the attorneys in the courtroom.”