Join 3,558 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


"If you feel stupid, it's not because I'm making you feel that way."
March 18, 2011 12:06 PM   Subscribe

What is a photocopier? Ten pages of Ohio Supreme Court testimony where a Cuyahoga County, Ohio, office worker deliberately tries to muddy the waters in a deposition. Hilarity ensues. "If you don't know what that means in an office setting, please tell the court you don't know what it means in an office setting to have a photocopying machine."
posted by Cool Papa Bell (85 comments total) 18 users marked this as a favorite

 
When you say "photocopying machine," "hilarity", what do you mean?
posted by zamboni at 12:09 PM on March 18, 2011 [3 favorites]


Jesus, why didn't he skip straight to this part from the beginning:
Marburger: Have you ever--do you have machines there where I can put in a paper document, push a button or two, and out will come copies of that paper document also on paper? Do you have such a machine?
posted by odinsdream at 12:13 PM on March 18, 2011 [11 favorites]


This is why we can't have nice things. Seriously.
posted by tommasz at 12:13 PM on March 18, 2011 [4 favorites]


Could someone pass the hoover?
posted by Static Vagabond at 12:15 PM on March 18, 2011


I need a kleenex.
posted by Dr-Baa at 12:16 PM on March 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


Why are people calling this guy a moron in the comments? He was clearly following the advice of his retained attorney - I don't know why his attorney would insist that he play dumb as to the fact that "a Xerox machine" is the same thing as a photocopier, but it's pretty clear that it's so.
posted by muddgirl at 12:16 PM on March 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


Abbott & Costello, Attorneys at Law.
posted by Zozo at 12:17 PM on March 18, 2011 [9 favorites]


You're not stupid, Mr Patterson, you're just an asshole.
posted by notsnot at 12:18 PM on March 18, 2011 [5 favorites]


Is that the full 10 pages? Must be short pages ...
posted by mrgrimm at 12:18 PM on March 18, 2011


No, it's just the same page photocopied xeroxed 9 times.
posted by Dr-Baa at 12:20 PM on March 18, 2011 [6 favorites]


THIRD BASE!
posted by Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug at 12:21 PM on March 18, 2011 [2 favorites]


"Bailiff, please take Mr. Patterson out back and knock some sense into him. For the rest of the court, a brief recess is called..".
posted by doctor_negative at 12:21 PM on March 18, 2011 [5 favorites]


Who calls opposing counsel "Dave" in court??

If I sat on the Ohio Supreme Court and had to listen to this, I'd probably be looking for the nearest gavel and debating whether to use it on myself or the witness.
posted by dry white toast at 12:21 PM on March 18, 2011


Who calls opposing counsel "Dave" in court??

It's a deposition.
posted by muddgirl at 12:23 PM on March 18, 2011 [2 favorites]


Aaron Sorkin really knows how to write courtroom scenes.
posted by Sticherbeast at 12:24 PM on March 18, 2011 [10 favorites]


An asshole says what?
posted by pianomover at 12:25 PM on March 18, 2011


Is that the full ten pages?

The one time I've been involved in a court case and received a copy of someone's deposition from my lawyer, each "page" of the deposition was about 3x4 inches; there were four of them printed on each regular 8.5x11 piece of paper. There were something like 60+ numbered deposition "pages" but it was about 15 sheets of paper worth.

I don't know why it's done that way but would be curious to hear.
posted by not that girl at 12:25 PM on March 18, 2011


I'm with Muddgirl. Of course he's trying to dodge the question. But what the hell could possibly be going on before the Ohio Supreme Court such that "do you have any photocopying machines in the office?" is a question you want to go all "it depends on what your definition of 'is' is" on.
posted by Naberius at 12:26 PM on March 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


Why are people calling this guy a moron in the comments? He was clearly following the advice of his retained attorney - I don't know why his attorney would insist that he play dumb as to the fact that "a Xerox machine" is the same thing as a photocopier, but it's pretty clear that it's so.

I was wondering if he wanted to make sure they differentiated from photocopiers and scanners, or photocopier/scanner combos. I mean, technically you could scan something to a computer and then print it out on the same device, which could be deemed "photocopying," I guess. His mentioning of different types of cars also led me to think this was his reasoning.
posted by Dr-Baa at 12:27 PM on March 18, 2011


The one time I've been involved in a court case and received a copy of someone's deposition from my lawyer,

So when you say you received "a copy," of a deposition, what exactly do you mean by that?
posted by Naberius at 12:27 PM on March 18, 2011 [3 favorites]


I forgot to add he then gets on the Xerox bit, which pretty much eliminates my theory.
posted by Dr-Baa at 12:28 PM on March 18, 2011


Dr-Baa: "His mentioning of different types of cars also led me to think this was his reasoning."

Also:
Cavanagh: It's not a fair question. A photocopy machine can be a machine that uses photostatic technology, that uses xerographic technology, that uses scanning technology.

posted by zarq at 12:29 PM on March 18, 2011


Cavanagh: It's not a fair question. A photocopy machine can be a machine that uses photostatic technology, that uses xerographic technology, that uses scanning technology.

Lawyers will twist words to suit their purposes. It's totally fair to insist on pedantic definitions.
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 12:31 PM on March 18, 2011 [5 favorites]


Cavanagh: It's not a fair question. A photocopy machine can be a machine that uses photostatic technology, that uses xerographic technology, that uses scanning technology

I didn't understand that part. Why didn't they just agree on that as the definition, i.e. any machine that uses those technologies to create duplicate copies of papers?

It seems weird from both sides, as in why did the deposee (deposant?) care at all, and why didn't the interrogator just define the word "photocopier"?
posted by mrgrimm at 12:33 PM on March 18, 2011


They're just copying Clinton's "define sex" defense.
posted by Old'n'Busted at 12:33 PM on March 18, 2011


It's true that the last several office copiers I've seen haven't actually been xerox-type photocopy machines— they've been all-in-one scanner/inkjet/fax-machine devices that have a mode which acts a lot like a photocopier. They also serve as the local networked printer, etc.

If I were under oath I might also want to be very clear on what question I was answering, but both this guy and the questioner seem stupidly unwilling to just define their terms and move on.
posted by hattifattener at 12:38 PM on March 18, 2011


He missed a real good chance to say "I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that."
posted by carter at 12:39 PM on March 18, 2011 [12 favorites]


"Jesus, why didn't he skip straight to this part from the beginning:

Marburger: Have you ever--do you have machines there where I can put in a paper document, push a button or two, and out will come copies of that paper document also on paper? Do you have such a machine? "

I call it 'vapor lock'. When someone says something to you so intensely stupid that the normal parsing and analysis you do to a statement gets stuck. Thats 'vapor lock'. Its a blocking event. You have to wend your way thru it first before you can move on to something else.
posted by MrLint at 12:43 PM on March 18, 2011 [17 favorites]


It's getting hard to even find a pure a simple analog Xerography machine; all the new ones are scanner/printer combos because of the greater flexibility and mechanical simplicity. We had one of the last large office copiers serviced by our office equipment contractor, and they hated working on it so much they eventually gave us a more modern copier with separate scanning and printing beds.
posted by localroger at 12:44 PM on March 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


I'm sorry but this is a really poor deposition. Anyone whose ever done any cross examination at all will have encountered this sort of nonsense and you just have to shift modes and really ask specific direct leading questions.

Q: Do you have a photocopier?
A: I'm not clear what you mean?
Q: You have machines at your job?
A: Yes
Q: You have machines at your job that create 'copies' of papers?
A: Yes
Q: What do you call those machines at your office?
A: what does office mean?
Q: At the place where you work what do you call the machines that make 'copies' of papers?
A: Xerox

I mean you really can't go blustering on like that lawyer does. You would just lose all respect and credibility, and you would end up with a terrible transcript.
posted by goneill at 12:44 PM on March 18, 2011 [18 favorites]


Actually, while the context isn't given here there is an important distinction: Analog copiers and dedicated fax machines don't provide for editing documents, and there are laws in place specifically making their output useful for certain legal purposes. It's very unlikely that the output of a scanner and printer connected to a computer would have been considered as trustworthy when those laws were written, so if your "copier" is also a scanner and printer and it's connected to a computer, it really might not be considered a "copy machine" for some purposes.
posted by localroger at 12:47 PM on March 18, 2011 [2 favorites]


Which is why this lawyer whom also works for the only newspaper in town got them to publish this very small excerpt of a much longer deposition. Let's not forget this one line:

Cavanagh: Dave, the word "photocopying" is at issue in this case, and you're asking him whether something is or isn't a photocopy machine, which is a legal conclusion --

It's easy to forget that line was in there with all the chaos.
posted by techie216 at 12:48 PM on March 18, 2011 [3 favorites]


I'm deeply offended by his indifference to trademark genericization.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 12:55 PM on March 18, 2011 [5 favorites]


Seriously, it's a problem with a shitty lawyer, not with the deposed.
posted by Jon_Evil at 12:58 PM on March 18, 2011


Marburger: Mr. Patterson, during your tenure in the computer department at the Recorder's office, has the Recorder's office had photocopying machines?
Cavanagh: You don't have to answer that question!
Patterson: I'll answer the question!
Patterson [to Marburger]: You want answers?
Marburger: I think I'm entitled.
Patterson: You want answers?
Marburger: I want the truth!
Patterson: You can't handle the truth!
[pauses]
Patterson: Son, we live in a world that has documents, and those documents have to be reproduced by men with Xerox machines. Who's gonna do it? You? You? I have a greater responsibility than you could possibly fathom. You weep for Cuyahoga County, and you curse the county recorder's office. You have that luxury. You have the luxury of not knowing what I know. That bad record-keeping, while tragic, probably saved money. And my existence, while grotesque and incomprehensible to you, saves money. You don't want the truth because deep down in places you don't talk about at parties, you want me on that Xerox, you need me on that Xerox. We use words like photostatic, xerographic, scanning. We use these words as the backbone of a life spent making copies. You use them as a punchline. I have neither the time nor the inclination to explain myself to a man who rises and sleeps under the blanket of the very document retention policies that I provide, and then questions the manner in which I provide it. I would rather you just said thank you, and went on your way, Otherwise, I suggest you pick up a ream of Xerox Business Multipurpose 4200 Plain paper, and stand a post. Either way, I don't give a damn what you think you are entitled to.
Marburger: Does your office have a photocopier?
Patterson: I did the job I...
Marburger: Does your office have a photocopier?
Patterson: You're goddamn right it does!
posted by Ratio at 1:01 PM on March 18, 2011 [103 favorites]


You're uncollated! You're uncollated! The whole trial is uncollated!
posted by Horace Rumpole at 1:04 PM on March 18, 2011 [19 favorites]


Objection!
posted by Khazk at 1:15 PM on March 18, 2011 [3 favorites]


I run into this problem all the time. Sometimes it is a witness dodging, but very often there is a specific term that must have a specific meaning before an element of the law is present. The dick here is likely not the witness or the lawyer defending the witness, but instead the guy asking the questions.

The game goes something like this, using a hypothetical:

The law says you violate a law if you use a computer with a standard physical QWERTY keyboard.

Everyone knows you use a device with a touch-pad with the letters in alphabetical order. In other words, no physical keyboard, no QWERTY. You don't need a witness to figure this out, you can go and fucking look at the device used. So, what's the point of ANY of this questioning? Well, the lawyer asking the question wants a sound-byte to play to a judge or jury to make everyone ignore the fact that you don't have a standard physical QWERTY keyboard. In simple cases this obviously falls apart, but in highly complex, extremely technical cases, juries in particular look for an easy out.

So, you ask this question: "Do you use a computer with a keyboard?"

No matter how the witness tries to answer, they look evasive because, really, who doesn't know what a keyboard is? Well, in CONTEXT you wouldn't be able to answer yes or no because of the underlying issues in the case make a simple question complex. IT guys in particular want to be precise. It's not their fault if the question is, in context, stupid.
posted by Muddler at 1:15 PM on March 18, 2011 [8 favorites]


"So, you ask this question: "Do you use a computer with a keyboard?"

Answer: No.
posted by Xoebe at 1:21 PM on March 18, 2011


Yeah, sorry, I know, you made a valid point. I couldn't resist, though. There's always some asshole...and sometimes that asshole is me :)
posted by Xoebe at 1:22 PM on March 18, 2011


They're just copying Xeroxing Clinton's "define sex" defense.
posted by mazola at 1:32 PM on March 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


as in why did the deposee (deposant?)

Deponent.

posted by Partial Law at 1:37 PM on March 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


I would have gone Sam Jackson on him:

Say 'what' again. Say 'what' again, I dare you, I double dare you motherfucker, say what one more Goddamn time!
posted by ChipT at 1:37 PM on March 18, 2011


There were something like 60+ numbered deposition "pages" but it was about 15 sheets of paper worth.

I don't know why it's done that way but would be curious to hear.


Court reporters are paid by the page.
posted by Combustible Edison Lighthouse at 1:48 PM on March 18, 2011


I should have been a lawyer. Really.

When you wait on the public sometimes you have to face people like this. I'd have gotten an answer in less than three pages of deposition.
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 1:50 PM on March 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


This appears to be this case.

Briefly, two plaintiffs are suing Cuyahoga County over what appear to be exorbitant costs for providing public documents.

The law states that in Ohio, copies of documents cannot exceed the cost of producing them. The county recorder office had previously provided deeds and deed filings to the plaintiffs for a cost of $50 per disc, which the plaintiffs were amenable to even if it may have exceeded the statutory cost allowed.

In the spring of 2010, the county recorder's office changed its policies, first to say that they could only provide paper copies of the records at $2 per page, then to deny that deed filings were public records under the law (thus allowing them to charge whatever they wanted for them), then to assess the charges at $2 per page of scanned documents plus one dollar for the disc itself (prior policy had stated that electronic documents were available for $1, the nominal cost of the disc).

(As a further aside, it annoys me that these legal filings use the wrong word — CDs are compact discs, not compact disks.)

The change in policies apparently wasn't communicated, because when one of the plaintiffs asked for the disc of records for two months worth of filings, instead of the normal $50, they were presented with a bill for $50,000.

The question over photocopiers seems generally moot, given that they routinely scan documents for electronic archiving (the county's preferred form being storing the documents on discs, so they're already doing the work; these private folks just want electronic copies of those).

Noting that there have already been several rounds of personnel shifts in the Cuyahoga office, involving a shift in county charter that reorganized the office under a Fiscal Officer, my guess — purely speculative — is that the office was losing money in a cash-strapped county and they tried to make it up by inflating the nominal cost of providing documents. The realtors couldn't afford it and were aggrieved, so they sued. Patterson seems like he's trying to rely on a technicality to justify a policy that seems bad on its face (though given the state of the economy and the slash-and-burn slate just elected, he may not have any other options).

But frankly, as the office policy states a price for providing photocopied documents, it's pretty fucking certain that they have a photocopier and that someone has referred to copying things (the attorney should have closed that loophole by rephrasing to eliminate the "photo" part, since that's the part that gets dropped).

I am not a lawyer, just going on what I can read in some pretty limited documents that are likely biased in favor of the complainants (what with it being their complaint and all).
posted by klangklangston at 1:50 PM on March 18, 2011 [11 favorites]


Ha! I've been in a deposition where the opposing attorney clearly wanted me to say some specific thing. On that basis alone, I dug in my heels and played dumb. We went around in circles for more than half an hour. Finally, he gave up and moved on. I like to think it was a demoralizing experience for him. My own attorney thought it was hilarious.
posted by ryanrs at 1:51 PM on March 18, 2011 [4 favorites]


Patterson: All of my life I've just known people to say Xerox. It's not commonplace to use the terminology that you're using.

Marburger: You mean it's more -- people say Xerox instead of photocopy?

Patterson: If you're referring to a type of machine where you place a piece of paper on the top and press a button and out comes copies of it, they usually refer to it as a Xerox.

Marburger: Have you ever heard it referred to as photocopying?

Patterson: Not with my generation, no.


Sheesh--you whippersnappers with your fancy technology terms and all. I can't keep up with all those fancy words and don't have time to fire up the google machine to find out what they mean.
posted by leftcoastbob at 1:58 PM on March 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


Metafilter: If you feel stupid, it's not because I'm making you feel that way.
posted by PareidoliaticBoy at 2:09 PM on March 18, 2011 [10 favorites]


Next Question: Now, Mr. Patterson, do you have carbon paper in your office?
posted by ecorrocio at 2:18 PM on March 18, 2011


I recall needing phone quotes for large photocopies from a number of local places a few years ago, and when I asked the Kinko's store if they had a color photocopier the guy had no idea what I meant. I had the same kind of mental break that I imagine this lawyer had because - who doesn't know what a photocopier is? It took me a few beats to circumlocute through to Color Xerox Copier, which he understood.
posted by rhapsodie at 2:31 PM on March 18, 2011


Patterson: When you say "photocopying machine," what do you mean?

Hess: You know, a machine that makes copies.

posted by snottydick at 2:36 PM on March 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


Marburge: Y'all got a Time Machine in your office?

Cavanagh: ...
posted by Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug at 2:37 PM on March 18, 2011


I did not photocopy that woman's ass.
posted by Bovine Love at 2:39 PM on March 18, 2011


"Bailiff, just kick that guy's ass for me."
posted by 2N2222 at 2:50 PM on March 18, 2011


I need to xerox this letter which I am about to post on the 4:30 autogyro to the Prussian consulate in Siam.
posted by dhens at 3:36 PM on March 18, 2011 [2 favorites]


What's really odd is that I think of "photocopy = xerox" as being more of a generalization of, say, my Dad's generation (although my Dad, who sold office equipment, is borderline pedantic about not saying "xerox" himself).

I get the fact that the case hinged on the machine and its use, and that it wasn't just an incidental question (thanks klangklangston for that summary), but I can't figure out what purpose getting him to say the office had a photocopier served, and I'm usually pretty good at figuring out what lawyers are trying to do. I don't see how it turns into one of those "do you still beat your wife" kinda questions.

But as is typical in many legal cases, sounds like both sides possibly being unreasonable. $50 for all the documents a disc can hold could be a money-loser for the county, depending on the time it takes to search for documents and burn the disc. $50,000, of course - well, that's a business model I could get behind...
posted by randomkeystrike at 3:49 PM on March 18, 2011


What is a photocopier? The philosophical question.
posted by ovvl at 3:53 PM on March 18, 2011


Do deponents have to swear to tell the whole truth, or just the truth?
posted by Philosopher's Beard at 4:02 PM on March 18, 2011


Is it only in the US that one says "Xerox"? We use it as a brand name but one would never "xerox" something. I'm interested to know if it's a local peculiarity to Americans or if everyone else but the British use the term.
posted by Lleyam at 4:05 PM on March 18, 2011


This thing reads like a play by Samuel Beckett or one of those guys who make you question the nature of language itself.
posted by meadowlark lime at 4:07 PM on March 18, 2011 [3 favorites]


I would have gone Sam Jackson on him:

"You know what they call a photocopying machine in Cuyahoga County?"

"They don't call it a photocopying machine?"

"No, man, they got the bureaucratic inertia. They wouldn''t know what the fuck a photocopying machine is."

"Then what do they call it?"

"Xerox with cheese."

"A Xerox with cheese. Wait, what the fuck is the cheese for?"

"Satirical symmetry. Stay with me, Jules."

"Okay. What do they call a fax machine?"

"Well, a fax machine's a fax machine, but they call it le fax machine."

"Le fax machine! [chuckles] What do they call a laminating machine?"

"I dunno. I didn't go into the DMV."
posted by gompa at 4:08 PM on March 18, 2011 [24 favorites]


Thank you Cleveland. Such a wonderful place to live.

Reading the pdf klangklangston linked provides some insight, as well as his analysis. There might be some legitimacy in establishing what the definition of a copying machine is here.

The primary issue is that a long standing $50 rate for digital copies of the records. The pdf notes a $50,000 bill was issued after they discarded that rate, charging instead on the $2 a copy rate which used for paper copies.

Of note, the Cuyahoga County GIS office makes available their data for $150 on a external hard drive.

http://gis.cuyahogacounty.us/en-US/GIS-Data.aspx
posted by graxe at 4:22 PM on March 18, 2011


Ohio law states that Recorders cannot make up fee's.
Yes they have to reproduce @ cost but only if that storage medium is used.

Cd's are no longer used

99% of docs & images are available free at their website within minutes of recording.

It's not just about the word photocopy.
posted by techie216 at 4:24 PM on March 18, 2011


not that girl: "I don't know why it's done that way but would be curious to hear."

I'm gonna take a while guess here and say that somebody along the way gets paid by the page.
posted by Bonzai at 5:58 PM on March 18, 2011


Who calls opposing counsel "Dave" in court??

I prefer to imagine everything Cavanagh says in the voice of HAL. Reasonable yet so unreasonable.

Cavanagh: Dave, I'll object to the tone of the question. You make it sound like it's unbelievable to you that he wouldn't know what the definition of a photocopy machine is.

Cavanagh: There's different types of photocopiers, Dave.

Cavanagh: That's what's at issue in the case, Dave.
posted by biffa at 6:27 PM on March 18, 2011 [2 favorites]


Is it only in the US that one says "Xerox"? We use it as a brand name but one would never "xerox" something. I'm interested to know if it's a local peculiarity to Americans or if everyone else but the British use the term.

I think so. (Peculiar to Americans). I think the other commenter is also right in that it has become slightly arcane. I *have* used Xerox as a verb, but not in a long time.
posted by gjc at 6:48 PM on March 18, 2011


How is coppy formed?
posted by Snerd at 7:25 PM on March 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


Jesus, why didn't he skip straight to this part from the beginning:

Marburger: Have you ever--do you have machines there where I can put in a paper document, push a button or two, and out will come copies of that paper document also on paper? Do you have such a machine?


Probably because he could have said:

"Yes, I just used one this morning to get into the court parking garage". You can see my paper, but I need it back to get my car out of the garage".
posted by hal_c_on at 7:27 PM on March 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


Xerox? I thought they were called "mimeos".
posted by 445supermag at 7:52 PM on March 18, 2011 [2 favorites]


"Do you have any photocopying machines in the office?" is a question you want to go all "it depends on what your definition of 'is' is" on.

Meta-deposition: I just spent 15 minutes* explaining the sentence above to a non-native-speaker-of-English who was reading over my shoulder... and the first ten minutes were just about parsing it.

Thanks a lot, Naberius.

* Or in legal terms, a billable hour.
posted by rokusan at 8:30 PM on March 18, 2011


Apropos of something - when I first started at World S&L in the mid 1980s a lot of upper management used to be upper management at Xerox. We called them Xeroids.

That is all.

posted by deborah at 8:35 PM on March 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


In Massachusetts, one county deed registrar discovered an easier way to make money from copies. At least, until he was caught.
posted by adamg at 9:08 PM on March 18, 2011


Xerox spent a lot of money trying to get people to stop using the term 'xerox' to refer to xerographic duplicates, because they were worried that their brand name would be 'gentrified' like Kleenex.
posted by delmoi at 11:57 PM on March 18, 2011


And Park Slope.
posted by klangklangston at 12:55 AM on March 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


Somewhere in this proceeding I feel the perfect opportunity was missed to say WOOP WOOP WOOP WOOP WOOP WOOP!
posted by Marla Singer at 3:16 AM on March 19, 2011


Deposition (defending): Seven hours locked in a room with a compulsive talker and a sociopath

Deposition (taking): Seven hours of pretending to be a sociopath while locked in a room with an amnesiac and a compulsive obstructionist.

--Mark Herrmann, The Curmudgeon's Guide to Practicing Law

posted by snuffleupagus at 3:44 AM on March 19, 2011 [4 favorites]


They're just copying Clinton's "define sex" defense.

Did Patterson fuck a copy machine? What's the context behind his stonewalling on this point?
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 5:17 AM on March 19, 2011


Thanks a lot, Naberius.

That story was hillarious. Those sneaky ESL's! You need a chimp camera, so you can quickly change to screen to something easier to explain...like dinosaurs.
posted by hal_c_on at 5:27 AM on March 19, 2011


posted @ the original site///good point:

i at least skimmed all of the 55 comments to date, and didn't see one person who got it right. plenty were so busy criticizing the deponent that they don't recognize what a great job he did, and, in context, the soundness of the reason for his strategy.

astoundingly obvious from the context that the case hinges in large part upon the definition of "photocopy". the witness's lawyer prepped him very well, and properly. opposing lawyer was hoping to get some sloppy irrelevant nuggets into the record, and he got shut down. he was not shut down because the witness doesn't know what's referred to as a "photocopying machine" in casual terms, but because the deposing lawyer wanted to get weasel material on paper for something that has nothing to do with the witness's recognition of a term, but rather the underlying statute and later technology. state criminality aside, biggest bozo in the room? the one deposing the witness.

those expounding on how the judge should've stepped in, judges aren't normally present at depositions, which explains why no objections were ruled upon in the transcript, and why the lawyers spoke directly to one another (generally forbidden in court).

but the witness is the stupid one? bleh. how about more reading with understanding, and less yapping without it?
posted by techie216 at 7:48 AM on March 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


If you don't like sloppy irrelevant nuggets, you can always ask for the sauce on the side.
posted by box at 8:05 AM on March 19, 2011


Is that the full ten pages?

The one time I've been involved in a court case and received a copy of someone's deposition from my lawyer, each "page" of the deposition was about 3x4 inches; there were four of them printed on each regular 8.5x11 piece of paper. There were something like 60+ numbered deposition "pages" but it was about 15 sheets of paper worth.

I don't know why it's done that way but would be curious to hear.


When there's 20 depositions in the case, you very much appreciate the file being 25% as large as it could be.
posted by Ironmouth at 8:31 AM on March 19, 2011


They're all stupid here.

First it is a dumb strategy. This is a public records case. It is a suit against the government so its quite likely there will be no jury trial, just a bench trial. The judge will see right through all of this.

Second, what is this crap about the Ohio Supreme Court? This is a depo. its in a conference room, there are no judges.

The objection goes to the record and is noted. Only if it comes up is it ever ruled upon by the judge--the remedy is to exclude the testimony.
posted by Ironmouth at 8:38 AM on March 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


not that girl: around here, that's called a "mini" when the deposition is printed with four boxes of text to a page, with each box of text representing one page of the transcript. It is, as noted above, significantly cheaper than the regular deposition transcript. It also is easier to read, as noted above. The regular deposition transcript is always in 14 point Courier, double-spaced with a minimum of 1 inch margins, each line numbered and each page numbered. All that white space is so you can meaningfully mark up your transcript; all those numbers are so you can direct people to specific parts of transcripts. But it's surprisingly tiring to read a question and answer session when only about two and a half questions fit on a page.

Depositions are more soul-killing than hateful law partners.
posted by crush-onastick at 9:42 AM on March 19, 2011


This transcript is far more reflective of what goes on in a real deposition than are any of the deposition scenes from "The Social Network."
posted by exogenous at 8:13 AM on March 21, 2011


« Older Earth Tides, Syzygy, this weekend's Supermoon, and...  |  While constructing a free eboo... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments