I've been asked (axed) by other court reporters, what do you write/translate when the accent is different?  Well, advertisement and centimeter pronounced differently but spelled the same, it's just the accent.  Case in point:  


(IMO, if you ask for a g, you know it ends in a g)

Q - What do you write ?

Then there are those that make us cry...

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Really? A reporter "axed" you what you would write?  Would a reporter consider writing, "He axed me to go with him"?  Um, I don't think so.  

I wasn't going to make any comments. My logic tells me this "Discussion" is really a quip and she isn't expecting responses.  I couldn't imagine making a transcript reflecting how a person actually sounds because it would show my ignorance and it would be insulting to the speaker.  Many people (adults) tell me I talk funny or I have a heavy accent.  Many other people tell me I don't.  I can't make an N sound (nurse - lurse, no - low). Our speech patterns come from what our brain maps.  (Orientals learn to speak from orientals.  Deaf people can't hear, so they can't learn speech patterns).  If I had to give a depo and the court reporter made a transcript of exactly how some of my words come out - I would be writing one nasty-ass letter to the reporting firm and copy it to the attorneys.

I hesitated to comment too.  But the more I thought about it, the more I thought it wasn't a quip, b/c she said she had actually been asked by other reporters.  I don't know why someone would post something if she didn't really want a response.  If not, it's just called a "thought" or a remark in a journal to which no one would respond.  But, yeah, I agree with what you said, Mary Jo, about pretty much going ballistic if someone wrote our "accents."  I'm from Texas, and don't even hear my accent.  Supposedly I have one.  :)

My rules for transcription is if I know what the word is and it's in the dictionary, then that is what is transcribed.  I do public defender depos, and I hear a lot of words come out of people's mouths that sound different from the actual pronounciation.  I am making a transcript for attorneys and the court.  The purpose of my transcript is to get testimony for use in litigation - not to see how a deponent speaks.

I have a question, Mary Jo, if you had a witness say, "It was mines" using the word "mines" for "mine" what would you do?

It was mines.   And I get A LOT of that.  I do not clean up their poor grammar.  But if their accent makes words sound funny, I transcribe the correct spelling.  That's a good point.  Because the way a person speaks reflects the person's quality.  And that is something attorneys are also evaluating just as much as the person's education, training and actual testimony. 

I wouldn't write "axed" for asked because, well, I might be accused of being bigoted or making fun of someone.  On the other hand, where I live there are a lot of Asians and they always get their plurals wrong.   And I do write the plurals as they say them, things like, "I go to many meeting," etc.   Also I would write "mines" if that's what they said.  But if someone mispronounces a real word, I put the correct word down.

I wasn't going to respond either, but I have had deponents with absolutely no accent say axed for asked, so I don't believe that one is an accent issue. It may be a mispronunciation issue, but not an accent issue.  And I've read lots of posts about reporters [sic]ing mispronounced words, so why not this one?

Thank you all for your replies.

I don't personally correct noun and verb when the incorrect one is used or an s or d is added to the end of a word, or write sic, and I personally write asked, even if I hear axed, because it's a mispronunciation of the word, IMO, of many individuals; and then the doctor pronounces centimeter "sontimeter" and because we write phonetic, we have to global the stroke to translate correctly.

I just thought I'd post this because I've heard both reporters writing exactly and inserting sic

The Wheel of Fortune link above  just seemed ridiculous (asking for a g but not pronouncing it, i.e., swimmin') just had me thinking, really?  I'm from TX too and I think the accent of dropping the g is very prevalent.

Happy Holidays, everyone!


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