Deposition Video Recording

Often times it isn’t what someone says, it’s how they say it. Intonations, emotions, body language, facial expressions and manner of delivery captured on video that reveal the true nature and meaning of what a person is really saying.

Digital Court Reporters encourages attorneys to incorporate video into their depositions whenever feasible. According to the American Bar Association, “video is a far richer tool than the stenographic transcript alone.” Numerous studies have concluded that video depositions are much more likely to keep a jury’s attention. Moreover, good printed testimony of a credible witness can become great testimony, when seen as a video.

If a picture is worth a thousand words then a video deposition may be worth a million. Video creates context to an otherwise sterile transcript of the deponent’s testimony. It allows the jury to contextualize gestures, long pauses, and the deponent’s general demeanor. The jury would never know from reading a transcript that a deponent’s voice was quivering or raised during testimony.

The Dangers of the Do-It-Yourself Videographer

Let’s face it, the rapid advance of technology has made video cameras extremely affordable and easy to use. This has led many attorneys to consider videotaping a deposition themselves in order to save money. This is a bad idea for several reasons, do not become a “pro se videographer.” First, an attorney’s focus during a deposition should be on the witness. You should be thinking about your line of questioning rather than the camera’s focus. Second, operating the video camera properly during a deposition really is a full-time job. The videographer must continually monitor the camera’s picture, memory, power feed, and audio. We have encountered numerous examples of video being ruined because an air conditioner kicked on during the deposition and ruined the video’s sound quality. A professional videographer will wear headphones and ensure the audio is accurately captured. Third, a videographer brings objectivity. Opposing counsel will not be able to challenge the video or argue that it is an inaccurate record. Fourth, Digital Court Reporters provides you with peace of mind. We maintain a copy of the video in perpetuity on our server and cloud server. You never have to worry about it being lost or damaged.

Video-to-Text-Synchronization

Digital Court Reporters can synchronize the audio and video to the court reporters written transcript. This allows you to highlight key sentences or paragraphs at trial and play them back to the jury. The jury will then see the words spoken by the deponent and also see how the witness spoke those words.

Courtroom Ready Quality

If you do decide to become a “pro se videographer”, keep in mind that you will have to be a “pro se editor” as well. This means that the taking attorney must spend hours editing the video record instead of preparing for trial. Do what you do best: try your case. You are not saving your client money by trying to be a part-time pro se videographer. Let Digital Court Reporters handle all your videography needs.