WELCOME ADDRESS COSTRAPHIL
By: Hon. Ray Alan T. Drilon, Executive Judge
RTC, Bacolod City.
Good morning ladies and gentlemen. On behalf of the Magistrates of the First and Second Level Courts of this City and Province I would like to thank you for your kindness in coming to this occasion, the Convention of Court Stenographers Association Of The Philippines.
Let me congratulate each, and everyone, who has been actively involved in the organizational endeavor to hold this activity in this part of the Visayan region.
The practice of stenography not only as a profession but an art, within the framework of our court system has indeed raised the court stenographer’s awareness of the importance of their vocation in the justice system of this country. They say that without the presence of the steno reporter, hearings could not possibly proceed, for no one would take down the court proceedings, in a manner most faithful to what transpired in the court room. The familiar figure of the steno reporter as a passive participant in the court room drama, could hardly be taken for granted. The product of their work is heavily relied upon by the courts in handing down decisions. Their transcripts would find their way in the decisions of the High Court to form part of jurisprudence.
Court reporters usually create verbatim transcripts of the spoken word, conversations, oral arguments, court rulings, legal proceedings, meetings, and other events. Written accounts of spoken words are sometimes necessary for correspondence, records, or legal proof, and court reporters provide those accounts. Court reporters play a critical role not only in judicial proceedings, but also at every meeting where the spoken word must be preserved as a written transcript. They are responsible for ensuring a complete, accurate, and secure legal record. In addition to preparing and protecting the legal record, many court reporters assist judges and trial attorneys in a variety of ways, such as organizing and searching for information in the official record.
In addition to possessing speed and accuracy, court reporters must have excellent listening skills and hearing, good English grammar and vocabulary, and punctuation skills. Court reporters also must work well under time and deadline pressures and be able to concentrate for long periods. They must be aware of business practices and current events, as well as the correct spelling of names of people, places, and events that may be mentioned in court proceedings. For those who work in courtrooms, an expert knowledge of legal terminology and criminal and appellate procedure is essential.
I hope that in the near future our court reporters will be able to expand their methods, with the help and support of the Supreme Court. The manual methodology of steno-writing may be reinforced by the use of advanced technology like the electronic steno-machine, electronic reporting with the use of digital audio equipment and transcribers, or perhaps the use of voice writers one of the latest technologies used in court room reporting.
Having said this, as a trial judge, for a number of years perhaps it is accurate to say that one of the most overburdened employees of the court is the stenographic reporter. A court with a heavy case load would mean overworked court steno reporters. The coming of the cyber age has now raised questions whether technology would soon replace the human skills of the stenographer. There is likewise the question of the steno reporter’s necessity in the light of the fast growing advances in computer and information technology. Calling for a convention such as this to discuss the most pressing issues affecting your profession is significant step in advancing the primordial interests of the court stenographic reporters.
I am proud and honored, by your invitation, and congratulations to your officers.
May I take this opportunity to welcome all of you, and wish you a fruitful day. God Bless.