There is a proposed rule change for Indiana courts that seems to point to keeping stenographers out of the courtroom. Big thanks to Steno Strong and the stenographers that brought it to my attention. It’s pretty straightforward.
Much like Arizona, Indiana is asking for public comment. I’m feeling less dramatic than usual, so I gave it a shot.
As I understand it, our institutions and many members of our community are already organizing a response. I would say get involved. Brainstorm on the best ways to phrase things or the right angle to go at this from. See if any attorney allies or anyone related to the legal field will pitch in a public comment. In my mind, it’s unquestionable that we have to give it to them straight. They’re handing an economic win to audio recording vendors. Once stenographic vendors are eliminated, price goes up. This is a concept so well understood that it’s part of the antitrust theory of predatory pricing. But there are probably dozens of arguments that I didn’t address that other stenographers can bring to the table more articulately.
This comes on the heels of the November 1, 2022 dissolution of the Indiana Court Reporters Association.
This is a convenient real-life example of how government impacts the demand for court reporters. They’re considering a rule change that would delete us from the courtrooms. They’re telegraphing a huge drop in court reporter demand. Is it any surprise that the market responds by training fewer court reporters? This is the deathblow I wrote about in 2018. How are we going to attract investors for stenographic education if a large purchaser of court reporting services, like the government, is saying “yeah, thanks for the memories?”
There were other comments far better than mine. Hopefully some of you will copy and paste yours below too.
We have to be assertive here. If not now, when? Again, public comments are open on the government site.
This article later came out about us being blindsided.