Okay. So here's the hypothetical; you took a deposition down that was fast, you got everything and it made sense at the time, but when you got back home and were editing and reading over your job, what you have for an answer doesn't seem to make any sense. The audio back-up is not of any help. Now, is this where you use the (inaudible)? If so, is it absolutely dreaded to use the (inaudible)?? I seem to worry that if you have even one trascript that says (inaudible) in it, that the attorney is not going to want to hire you back.

What does everyone else think??:)

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So do you put the recorder out in the middle of the table or hide it somewhere? I had a reporter put a recorder out in the middle of the table once. The attorney didn't like it at all; told me to never send her back. I ask this because I realize we're both in So Cal and I didn't think it was the norm for California reporters to put recorders out on the table.

Yes, I do put it out on the table. I've had too many computer crashes. And I think a lot more reporters use a digital recorder as a backup than you realize.

But remember, it's a backup. I use it in cases where I'm double checking things like if an attorney misspoke. I think I may have dropped a word like "not." It's not in my notes. It's not on my audiosyn, but clearly the sentence should have a :"not", so I double check. Attorneys misspeak all the time.

Or I have had my Eclipse freeze on me several times. Rather than stop the proceedings, I write to my writer. At the end of the day, I take my floppy notes and upload to Eclipse and translate from the floppy notes. I either splice that file w/the existing Eclipse file.

But there's always the chance that something got messed up. If you're on Eclipse, you might have had to optimize your file bec. the whole file got corrupted somehow. Optimizing is when Eclipse scans through and cuts out portions that might be bad. So you're never sure what Eclipse has decided to cut it out. It can be a PITA to put together a transcript in such cases w/out some form of audio to double check. If Eclipse has frozen or your files get corrupted, you may or may not have an audiosync file.

Saying that, I think a lot of attorneys think it's a cell phone or something. But if they ask me what it is, I tell them it's a digital recorder for backup in case anything happens. I don't lie to attorneys. I explain to them it's the same thing as if I had to re-translate my transcript from the paper notes. If I had too, I could do it, but it would take so much longer.

I've never been told by an agency that any attorney has told them they did not want me to come back. I have often been sent out by agencies to clients who are "special" or "new" bec. they want to get the business or retain the business.

I still have paper notes, floppy disk notes, audio sync, and digital audio back up. I back up my files online and to a external hard drive. I'm just paranoid about having multiple back ups.
I too use a digital recorder as a backup to my audiosync. I get questioned on it and I say, "This is to back me up in case I ask you to slow down and y'all ignore me." They snicker and that's it. Often when I can't understand something on audiosynch, I can hear it with the Olympus audio, which I listen to in Transcription Buddy. Only when that fails do I go the clip route I mentioned above.

I carry 2 digital recorders because if one digital recorder won't cooperate, I have the other. Would never ever ever feel comfortable just with audiosynch. What if laptop crashes or something stupid happens and no audiosynch for some reason. Couldn't bear the thought. I seem to attract major motor-mouths.

I'm concerned about how many Eclipse crashes and/or optimizations you're encountering. I've been back on Eclipse since September '07 and I've had no problems like the ones you're describing. Maybe you can start a new thread and post your specific problems and the Eclipse and/or computer gurus (Dorothy McGrath, Breck Record, Keith Vincent, etc.) can come in and help you get to the bottom of your problems and get you fixed up and 100% A-OK. The stress this is probably causing you must be mind-numbing. Maybe you need a newer, bigger, faster computer? Maybe you've unknowingly downloaded a virus from a WI-FI spot? Maybe you've got a bad dictionary entry that's causing you consternation and your system to freeze up? And if you can't find your problem, I'll suggest to you that DigitalCAT has an extremely reliable program. I used that program while Eclipse was getting their freezing issues taken care of (Dorothy McGrath did some heavyduty research and found the issue for the freezing last year) and can tell you it's easy to use and you can get it on a small monthly contract. Maybe Greta Duckett can come in and tell you more positives about that program. But life's too short to be dealing with all the issues you're describing. Let's see if we can get you fixed up.

Hi, Erica,

Back in the day I would do everything possible to find the words. If it's a construction case, I'd call a contractor and read them my notes. As a scopist I do the same thing. If there's a word or phrase I don't understand, I'd call up whatever industry I need to. I recently scoped a job out of Virginia where they were talking about some little neighborhood, blah, blah, blah, and I couldn't find it for anything. I finally called up a real estate agent in VA and read her the Court Reporter's notes and the relevant text around it, and then the RE agent was able to tell me, Oh, that's blah.

Barring all of that, if no one you call has a clue, I'd write (phonetic) and not (inaudible), but I totally agree that that's a very last resort.
Hi Erica,

I quickly scanned through the posts for different views on this. I tend to agree with Andrea (although I personally don't like her very much HAHA! ::::::::wink-wink::::::::::) - I get it then and there. I don't care who I piss off, I don't care who I have to chase out of a room, I don't care if I have to speak to a witness while they're trying to run to the rest room. I am polite and very confident about it. I think it depends on how you present yourself at depositions. I always phrase my question as "Excuse me, sir, I'd like a clarification from your earlier testimony...." Say it with a smile and sound confident as if it's a matter-of-fact question you ask every single day. I will actually scribble down a word or phrase that I'm unsure of between quick breaths and ask them about it on a break.

Now, I am NOT saying this is how you are, but I think, in general, reporters who come across as either unsure of themselves or insecure are easy "targets" for attorneys to immediately label as incompetent. I was born with a brass pair, and I can count on one hand in the last 20+ years how many times someone was actually rude about a question I asked either during or after a deposition, although I always try to save it until later.

Really, look at the overall picture. How many pages was the job? You're talking about, what, a couple of words? Who freaken cares. That's what the errata sheet is for. It is not your job to force someone to pronounce words perfectly. Now, would I personally ever put "(inaudible)" in a transcript? NEVER. The reason being is because we are the live reporter. We are supposed to be the almighty "record." If attorneys can't grasp the simple concept that we are there for THEM to make THEIR record when asking a witness to clarify or repeat their word, then what else can we do.

In your case, make the best of the sentence and throw in a "[sic]" somewhere. You are telling the reader of the transcript that it's what you heard, but it could have been heard differently than what was actually said. IMHO, I'd never, ever, ever use an "inaudible" in a transcript. I personally think it makes us look bad. Use a "[sic]" because I consider that synonymous with "what the hell did you just say?"

Now I'm curious ... please let us know what you decided to do.
I do want to say that I appreciate everyone's help. I do not feel that school prepares you enough for this, and I am all about learning everything I can to be a better reporter!!! I try VERY hard to do everything I can to be the best, but sometimes that really beats you down to tears....

Anyways, the sic thing is very interesting. I was always told that sic only meant if the witness made a mistake (i.e., said a wrong name for someone, etc.) I never new that it could be used for "what the hell did you just say?" lol. But that is a very very great piece of information! After listening to it over and over and reading my notes, I decided to go with a dash in between. It was a 330 page job, and it just made much more sense. I think he was just tripping over himself because he was so excited to get it out. That is why I chose the method I did.
audiosync is not something i've come to rely on in any way - i still interject aplenty!
in this case, however, i was sure glad i had it to re-listen to and attempt to decipher
what this extremely difficult witness was saying ...
I think that everyone who is telling you to insert "sic" when you really want to say, "what the hell did you just say," doesn't really understand the proper use of sic. Sic actually means "thus so, in that manner". It is traditionally used to show that an original document that is being quoted contains error in spelling or grammar or fact. In effect, the person who reproduces the quoted passage is saying, "I found this error as you see it. I did not create it. "
I just went through a depo with a Pakistani witness who was not only inaudible, but so fast he wasn't understandable! It was 340 pages - YIKES! Toward the end of the day, I called my atty client out into the hall and told hime, sincerely, that I felt I'd been committing malpractice all day long. He basically gave me the sign-off and said he was near the end and "let's just keep going."

In order to cover my butt, with the assistance of the audio, I put in every interjection I made during the course of the depo saying "I didn't inderstand" or "that was too fast, I didn't get it" or "You have to repeat because I couldn't hear you, you're so fast."

The above was in addition to the many times I was forced to put in the parenthetical (Indecipherable) in the text of the transcript.

On my cert page, I merely certified the transcript as being full and complete to the best of my professional ability.
This whole discussion is really shocking me. Are ALL reporters in the US using audiosync or some type of recording backup? I ask this because I started my work in South Florida where any and all audio recording was a BIG FAT NO NO. I spent the first five years of my career interrupting, dashing, calling for clarification... ANYTHING except recording, and it amazes me that everyone on this site acts as if audio recording is the norm.

I am sure I will get lynched for saying this, but no wonder we are all in fear of being replaced by the digital reporters since so many of us are, in fact, glorified digital reporters.
All the CAT software is made with audiosync now. I know some reporters don't use it, but I think most do. I think it's a great tool for reporters as long as you don't rely on it.


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