Shorthand allows court reporters—also called stenographers—to accurately and quickly record the conversations in depositions, trials, and meetings. Shorthand is an abbreviated writing technique, and it helps reporters write or type notes in a very fast and efficient manner. Think about how quickly people can speak during trials, depositions, and meetings! That is why mastering shorthand and the stenotype machine is so crucial for court reporters!
Brief History of Stenography
The process of writing shorthand is called stenography. Stenography comes from the Greek words stenos (narrow) and graphein (to write). Stenography has a rich and ancient history. Ancient scribes once used shorthand to record speeches of politicians, philosophers, and other public speakers. Their versions of shorthand were written symbols, and these symbols often represented abbreviated spellings of words. It was not until the 1800s that a phonetic shorthand was created. A phonetic shorthand’s symbols represent sounds instead of abbreviated spellings. Also during the 1800s, shorthand machines were invented. These machines allowed shorthand to be typed by pressing multiple keystrokes at once. These different groupings of keys represented various sounds and syllables.
Court Reporters and Stenography
By using shorthand and a stenotype machine, the modern court reporter can now take down his or her notes extremely quickly—over 220 words per minute! Just think, the average typing speed is 40 words per minute! Shorthand obviously improves efficiency when typing or handwriting notes. Since it is so efficient, shorthand has not only been used by ancient scribes and court reporters, but it is also used by other professions. Other types of shorthand techniques are also used by health providers when taking notes on a patient and by journalists who must quickly take down notes during a press conference or event.
In Need of a Court Reporter in Denver?
If you are in need of a Denver court reporter, contact us today! (303) 988-8470. We are committed to providing verbatim court reporting transcripts in a timely manner by a staff of competent, certified court reporters!