Frequently Asked Questions - Legal Videography
Who is StoryCloud?
StoryCloud is the leading provider of low cost nationwide video deposition services for litigators.
What type of attorneys or support staff can use StoryCloud?
StoryCloud can be used by any member of the litigation team. This includes business, civil, probate, personal injury, employment, medical malpractice, and family law as well as general counsel at the corporate level.
What is unique about the StoryCloud service?
First, StoryCloud trains and certifies a nationwide team of videographers who provide a consistent and high quality product. Second, each video deposition is saved locally to the iPad device and simultaneously streamed to the cloud in real time. This facilitates immediate access to the video via second chair or any interested party. Moreover, StoryCloud uses a second cloud-based videographer to monitor the deposition and ensure the audio and video is meeting its quality and reliability standards. Third, because of the use of modern technology and a team of well-trained videographers, StoryCloud can dramatically reduce the cost of each full day video deposition to $650. Fourth, StoryCloud’s content sharing platform provides secure and encrypted data room that’s easy to use and maintain for video, audio, exhibits and any ancillary documents pertaining to the legal matter or case.
*Note: Fees are approximate and may vary according to a number of factors (i.e. region and market rates for videographers).
How does it work?
Using an iPad, the StoryCloud platform records, saves to the iPad, and streams the video deposition to the cloud. Both audio and video are encrypted “on-the-wire” meaning the moment it leaves the phone the content is secure. Immediately after the video deposition is completed, anyone with proper credentials can login from any device using two-factor authentication.
Can other participants not physically attending the deposition see the content in real time?
Yes, anyone who is given proper credentials can view the content simultaneously including the attendees. However, there may be a slight lag depending upon available bandwidth.
During a break in the deposition can an attorney or staff member review the previously recorded session?
Yes, during a lunch break, for example, properly credentialed attorneys can login and review the session that was recorded earlier.
Does the StoryCloud video deposition solution comply with the California Code of Civil Procedure?
Yes. The StoryCloud video deposition solution complies with the California Code of Civil Procedure. The Code does not mandate the presence of a videographer during a video deposition unless an expert or a physician is being deposed.
In particular, Section 2025.340 (b) reads as follows:
(b) The operator of the recording equipment shall be competent to set up, operate, and monitor the equipment in the manner prescribed in this section. Except as provided in subdivision (c), the operator may be an employee of the attorney taking the deposition unless the operator is also the deposition officer.
Thus, you or your paralegal can record the video deposition of a lay witness using StoryCloud without the burden and extra cost of a videographer.
As a matter of practice, you should always consult with your own counsel.
How are attorneys noticed on the use of the StoryCloud video deposition platform?
The notice requirements to use StoryCloud video deposition platform are the same as for regular video depositions using instant visual display as enumerated in Section 2025.220 (a)(5), 2025.330 (c), and 2025.620. Your notice must simply indicate that the deposition will be videotaped or audiotaped using instant visual display of questions and answers, and that you reserve the right to present the recording at trial.
Will the video deposition recorded with StoryCloud be admissible as evidence at trial?
Yes. Attorneys frequently ask about the ability to admit the video deposition in court. To ensure that a StoryCloud video deposition is admissible in court, the attorney must follow the same rules of the California Code of Civil Procedure as used for admitting regular video depositions. The most common practice, and the simplest way to address all concerns is to have both parties stipulate to the use of the StoryCloud service.
In addition to the California Code of Civil Procedure, judges often have rules that specifically govern the procedure in their courtroom. Knowing the court’s rules will help you in preparing for trial as the rules will likely provide the attorney with further guidance on how a particular judge prefers to handle depositions in his or her courtroom.
What is the overall framework for providing secure video depositions during and after the deposition is complete?
Both the audio and video streams are encrypted wire-to-wire. This means that the moment both streams hit the WiFi network, they are encrypted and stored in the cloud. Once in the cloud, they are protected by industry standard AES-256 technology.
Click here for a detailed white paper discussing StoryCloud security.
How does StoryCloud’s content security compare to existing security offered by third-party legal support services?
StoryCloud believes that its streaming audio and video service is an order of magnitude more secure than the services provided by third parties.
In most cases, videographers and stenographers from third parties store confidential information with little regard for security and business process. Depositions are emailed back and forth as an attachment without the use of any formalized process control to standardize security. Attorneys have no way of knowing when the content was created on a third party hard drive, when/who deleted the information, or if/when content was shared with anyone else. To the best of our knowledge, there are no audit reports provided to law firms concerning the disposition of the content.
To address this issue, StoryCloud provides secure file sharing so that once the content resides in the cloud, only users with proper credentials can gain access to the files. User access is logged and can be audited. In the event that files need to be transferred, StoryCloud provides powerful, secure, encrypted, and permission-based file sharing technology to ensure that the content goes to the right person, at the right time, and at the right location with the proper credentials.
Are the videographers present at the deposition?
What video and audio standards does StoryCloud support?
MPEG-4 for video and AAC for audio.
What setup is required to use the StoryCloud video deposition service?
The setup usually takes 5 minutes to complete. StoryCloud provides all of the required elements.
Who performs the setup?
StoryCloud videographers will perform the setup.
Does StoryCloud use the local WiFi connection to stream the video?
Are there bandwidth requirements for the StoryCloud video solution?
Yes, there must be a minimum of 5 Mbps at the recording location.
What if the office does not have 5Mbps bandwidth for an uplink WiFi connection?
StoryCloud provides a Verizon MiFi box, which creates a local WiFi connection and a 4G link to the network at an additional cost of approximately $100/day.
What if the MiFi box fails?
StoryCloud saves the content to the local disk drive on the iPad.
Is the video content streamed to the cloud?
What happens if the local WiFi connection fails in the middle of a deposition?
StoryCloud stores all of the video and audio content to the iPad tablet. Each hour of video consumes approximately 1.5GB of memory. All StoryCloud recording devices have a minimum of 128GB of storage.
What is the quality of the StoryCloud video and audio recording?
Mobile camera technology has now eclipsed many standalone video cameras. The quality of the video and audio is excellent. Neither technicians nor viewers will be able to tell the difference between a standard video deposition recording and one recorded via the StoryCloud video deposition platform. In almost all cases, the video and audio are superior.
What if a law firm precludes specific matters from being seen by certain attorneys?
Login credentials are provided at the time of noticing to all associated attorneys and their support staff. No other attorney or person can gain access to the specific video matter, unless explicitly provided access.
Can StoryCloud video and audio recording be imported into standard trial presentation software (e.g. TrialDirector®)?
Yes. StoryCloud video and audio recordings can be exported into standard file types that can be imported into most trial presentation software, including TrialDirector®.
How can the StoryCloud video and audio files be accessed, viewed, and saved?
StoryCloud can export the video and audio file as a DVD, USB thumb drive, or downloaded/viewed via the StoryCloud viewer accessible from any device with a web browser (desktop, mobile, tablet). This enables attorneys to have a local copy of the video and audio file to present at trial.
Does the StoryCloud videographer provide a signed and dated certification document?
Yes. StoryCloud videographers provide a certification document that states the following:
The accompanying video deposition is the complete original/master recording
The recording has not been altered in any way while in the videographer's possession
The recording is fair, true, accurate, and complete
The videographer is not an attorney to, related to, or employed by any party or any party's attorney and has no financial interest in the matter
The total number of media units recorded
Can StoryCloud deposition services be used for anything other than depositions?
Yes. The StoryCloud system can be used for:
Interviewing and preparing a witness
Reviewing witness testimony at trial
Exhibit and evidence authentication
How much does the StoryCloud video deposition service cost?
The costs for our services are $350 for a half-day deposition (up 3 hours) and $650 for a full day deposition (over 3 hours). We do not charge for setup and breakdown, so the time starts at the scheduled start time of the deposition and ends when you go off the record at the conclusion of the day. The $350/$650 includes an on-site certified StoryCloud videographer and a copy of the video media in either MPEG-1, MPEG-2 or MPEG-4 format delivered via secure link. The other additional charges that apply are $10 per deposition for archival (we archive our media for 7 years) and the videographer's parking, if applicable. If you would like to synch the video, the charge is $200 per deposition. Post-production video editing charges vary and can be quoted based on need. For more information on pricing, please click here.
What is not included in the StoryCloud video deposition service?
Post video production services for editing and synchronizing court reporter transcripts. Industry standard video viewers and editors can be used such as TrialDirector, TimeCoder, iMovie and others.
Does StoryCloud break every two hours to change tapes?
Does StoryCloud record CR35 examinations?
How can StoryCloud's remote live streaming feature help you?
StoryCloud's remote live streaming feature allows attorneys, clients, a general counsel, or other individuals party to the case to view the live testimony video. It is accessible from any internet device with a web browser. Live stream participants can provide valuable input to the attorney taking or defending the deposition immediately during the course of the deposition without being physically present in the deposition room. It can help you to settle a case (http://storycloud.co/testimonials).
Disclaimer: The materials available at this web site are for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. Because the law differs in each legal jurisdiction and may be interpreted or applied differently depending on your location or situation, you should not rely upon the materials provided in this FAQ or web site without first consulting an attorney with respect to your specific situation. Further, the use of and access to this web site or any of the e-mail links contained within the web site does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and StoryCloud.