I just realized this post on the General Order establishing targeted visitor restrictions for EDTX courthouses through May 1, didn’t go up when it should have. Here it is, with my apologies.
Readers should be familiar with cybersecurity guru Shawn Tuma. Shawn has a new article out that gives a high-level version of what’s going on with Zoom to help answer the questions (1) what are the risks of using Zoom, and (2) is there a safer way to use Zoom? I highly recommend it if Zoom is part of your toolbox. In case the above link isn’t visible, it can be found at https://www.spencerfane.com/publication/understanding-the-cyber-and-privacy-risks-of-zoom-and-tips-for-using-it-more-safely/
I just spent some time on the call-in for the video conferencing system being used by some EDTX judges, and have a few pointers.
When are things going to get better? This order takes a guess in responding to a motion for a six-month continuance of the post-Markman dates in a case.
Outside, the butterflies are checking things out. Inside, mediation procedures are seeing changes no less dramatic (and possibly as short-lived).
I recall a district judge, who will remain nameless, once saying that he didn’t mind seeing the word “reversed.” It was the “and remanded” part that he hated. This case shows why.
Yes, we binged Daniel Craig Bond this weekend, but it provides a metaphor for this new twist on the usual COVID-19 order. Maybe we could call it a “Vesper” order …
The court granted one extension, but denied another, citing the rapidly changing landscape regarding COVID-19. Meanwhile, the azaleas are in bloom.
Judge Albright has issued procedures for how he’s conducting hearings (including Markman hearings) during the current environment.
All hearings on the Waco docket will continue as scheduled, but will occur telephonically. The Court will provide a call-in number, but the parties need to have a backup number just in case. Because in some cases several cases are set, you should dial in ten minutes before your hearing, but since multiple cases may be set, wait till your case is called to announce. (Be sure to put your phone on mute, and enjoy the show. Popcorn optional, but recommended).
PowerPoint slides. Your PowerPoint slides can WFH as well. If you want to use slides, email them to the Court 24 hours before the hearing. If both sides want to use slides, work out a time and email them at the agreed time at least that far out. If you don’t email slides at least 24 hours, the Court assumes you don’t want to use them.
Markman hearings. There is an exception to the 24 hour rule. You’ll get preliminary constructions from the Court before the hearing. Your slides are due within 6 hours of receiving those preliminary constructions. So you might want to make sure everyone on the Markman team is available the evening before the hearing to refine the slide deck based on the constructions, just in case.
Ed. note: I’d be sure to number your slides so you can direct the Court to the one you’re using. A surprising number of people don’t put numbers on their slide decks, which isn’t fatal at live hearings, but will be on a telephonic one.
Everyone stay safe out there.
A lot of us are spending time on Zoom teleconferencing these days. Craig Ball has a cheat sheet on Texas Bar Blog on how to do it better. Or you could just ask your teenage kids.