Specifically Pacific

About nine times a year the question comes up for all of us: Do you put Pacific in the transcript? This comes from the ultra verbatim mindset of court reporter. It’s relatable, understandable, constant, and incorrect.

Think about it. If a witness means to say specific and says Pacific, there are only two ways to handle it. First, for my ultra verbatim camp, the one which I find myself in most often, the correct spelling is ‘pecifically or ‘pecific.

If you are not so much in the straight verbatim camp, then the spelling remains specific or specifically. The rationale behind this is that if a word is mispronounced we generally don’t spell it differently because it makes the transcript harder to read and follow (example: we don’t spell tomato and tah-may-toe and tah-mah-toe differently. 

Despite deep and unyielding admiration for a  verbatim record, in this Pacific case, you can write specific. That’s my opinion and I’m sticking to it. Feel free to add your comments below on what you do and why you do it that way. 

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