I asked for the latest reporter rate sheet from my agency, and I was shocked that I never caught this earlier. They pay the same amount for realtime/LiveNote and for a rough draft. I immediately said, "No, no, no, no! The realtime rate must be higher than the rough draft rate. It's a specialized skill. Anyone can go home and clean up a rough draft and e-mail it. A realtimer does it all right on the spot."

I am close to the powers that be and can speak my mind and hopefully be influential. I am making a case for raising the realtime rate, and my question to you all is regardless of what the actual rates are, what is the difference between the two that you or the agency you work for charges?

And if any Southern Californians are comfortable telling me the actual rates, either here or to me in private (mytwins@cox.net), I'd really appreciate it. I'd like to have something to back up what I'm saying. I have numbers in mind and would like to know if I'm in the industry ballpark.

While I'm at it, isn't the norm for expedite rates 10 percent per day? I could also use some stats on your expedite rates as well.



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I have no idea if my real-time rates are competitive for my area. I was kind of surprised that CA rates were lower given the cost of living differences. Marge, I'm the only one in the office that is willing to do the RD and RT work in my very small office. Our RT rates are almost the price of an extra copy sale. How does that compare with rates across the nation? That might be a good way to compare apples to apples given that rates vary so widely.

I recently got a call from a national firm who wanted to do the production and billing for a last-minute all-day rough draft medical job. I told them upfront that I couldn't allow them to do the production and billing--whether their business practices WERE violating or anticontracting laws or not, their business practices of charging more than our market was used to was starting to cause our copy sales to decline. They agreed. I got my books cleared with other reporters so I could take the job. A manager of the national firm called back at 4:30 to tell me that they were going to have to call around and find somebody that would take the job since they HAD to do the production and billing for this new client. I ended up losing a day's work for nothing but the satisfaction of being able to tell this scheduler exactly what I thought of her company's business practices and how they were affecting our market, followed up with a "Don't ever call me again."

In short, I'm real glad that somebody somewhere has had some success in dictating their terms. We're still losing the power struggle here in Kentucky.
Does "Bridge" only work if you are on Eclipse? I'm on Case Catalyst.
Bridge works with any software at there. The screen will only refresh if you are using Eclipse.

But Eclipse has offered up the programming codes to the other major vendors, and I think they might be looking in to updating/tweaking their software so that it will refresh w/Bridge.
Janiece --

Bridge (as Kyung said) works with any CAT software ... but it will only refresh with Eclipse.

Kyung --

Last I heard (see the 01SEP08 update), Stenovations seems to be making the most effort in getting the Bridge protocol working. Other vendors (ProCAT, AristoCAT, and LiveNote) are "interested in implementing it" in their software. Haven't heard anything since, though.

"For a Good (steno) Time ...."
I agree that realtime hookup should pay more, afterall, you are writing "naked." After taking an expert with realtime hookup, I thought to myself, "No way is this worth only $1.00 a page!" From now on I tell the agencies I charge $1.50 for expert hookups.


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