Some Fun Facts About Court Reporting

November 6, 2019 2:36 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Court reporters have a difficult job: they’re trained to transcribe hundreds of words per minute in real time. This is impressive enough on its own, but when you consider that they’re required to stay focused no matter how interesting the proceedings become—or how dull they happen to be—these professionals can start to seem superhuman.

Court reporters play an important function in legal proceedings. They help keep a written record of everything that’s said out loud in court so that the attorneys and judges involved can refer back to it later. While attorneys and judges get most of the credit for litigating cases, the court reporter ensures a fair trial. Their role is crucial, and they’ve been a crucial part of courtroom proceedings for over 2,000 years.

Here are some other things you might not know about court reporting in Phoenix, AZ:

  • First court reporter: The first known court reporter was Marcus Tullius Tiro, who developed shorthand in 63 BCE. He transcribed the lawyer Cicero’s speeches using over 4,000 symbols.
  • Multiple shorthand systems: Marcus Tullius Tiro’s system flourished until the medieval era. Other shorthand systems, designed especially for English speakers, began popping up around 1180 CE.
  • First stenotype machine: What we think of as modern court reporting has its origins in the late 19th century, when the stenotype machine was invented. This allowed court reporters to type significantly faster.
  • Weird keyboards: The modern stenotype keyboard only has 22 keys, which can stand for a word, a syllable or even a phrase.
  • Breaking the record: The fastest court reporter in the world, Mark Kislingbury of Houston, TX, can type up to 360 words per minute with 97 percent accuracy. He has been noted in the Guinness Book of World Records.
  • On the big screen: If you’ve ever wanted to watch a documentary about court reporters, you can watch For the Record, a film that features stenography competitions (as well as Mark Kislingbury, of course).
  • The most famous court reporter: Charles Dickens had a career as a court reporter when he was 16.
  • Original shorthand: The ampersand (&) is an early example of shorthand.
  • Career diversity: Court reporters aren’t limited to courtroom proceedings. Some specialize in broadcasting, which allows them to caption TV and film. Others are “freelance” court reporters who mainly work with attorneys on civil litigation matters.
  • Notaries: Some court reporters have to also be a notary public, swear in witnesses and swear as to the accuracy of their records.

Professional court reporting in Phoenix, AZ

When you need a professional court reporter, turn to us. Bartelt | Nix Reporting, LLC is a longtime provider of court reporting in Phoenix, AZ. We have been in business since 1972 and have earned an excellent reputation in the industry. Our company offers a large variety of legal services. You can count on us to handle large case volumes, and our main areas of expertise include medical, technical and all complex litigation. Call us today to find out how our talented team can help your pursuit of justice.

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