Rumors in the Digital Age
As an Eclipse scopist, I occasionally share PSAs on my Facebook page on various subjects that arise from my experiences in this business. After a recent post, I received a question from, and responded to, a steno. In order to correct the record once and for all, I shared the following in Court Reporters of Facebook, Court Reporters Vent Here, and Court Reporters Vent Uncensored.
REPORTER: Wait, I'm confused. Aren't you an advocate for digital reporting? While I'm glad to hear you talk about respect for the record and not thinking that reporters should rely on their audio -- of which I would agree -- aren't you advocating that the entire record/transcript can be adequately produced from a mere audio recording?
LINDA LEE: I’m glad you asked, Isaiah. No, I do not actively advocate for digital reporting. That is a rumor that continues to be shared in reporter circles. I'm not interested in training digitals.
As one who spent nearly a year and a half learning the language of steno from the late veteran court reporter Cathi Annis Burnham, owner-operator of the Allied School of Court Reporting, a brick-and-mortar in Rhode Island, I believe that steno is the gold standard of reporting. I scope for stenos and am also the woman behind BriefReliefBook.com, whose mission is to create briefs and other resources that help stenos write shorter, faster, and smarter. That is my passion.
However, the truth doesn’t matter to some. Rather than reach out to me, as you did, to ask me if I train digitals, some reporters drew that conclusion because of my having coached students in the scopist track of PAF Training Programs, owned and operated by Patricia A. Falls, veteran stenographer, which is now The Court Reporting Academy. Patricia corrected the record in a thread on my page when someone else brought up the rumor.
There are those who also have an issue with me (which I learned from fair-minded reporter friends) because I do not share their pathological hatred for digitals and others in the business, to include voice reporters and “reporter flunkies,” a perjorative that a reporter used instead of “scopists.” Thus my acceptance of the fact that digitals exist is used by some to lend credence to the rumor that I train them.
I subscribe to the philosophy of "Live and let live" and "Treat others how you wish to be treated." Furthermore, I have no issues with anyone who lawfully earns a living. Unfortunately, to some, unless you believe, as a reporter stated recently in one of the forums, that “Digitals are the gum beneath my shoe," you're perceived as the enemy. When one is good at what they do, there is no need to fear.
"A man's gift maketh room for him and bringeth him before great men." (Proverbs 18:16)
Thanks for reading. Write short, write fast, and brief on!
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Brief Relief is a compilation of one-stroke briefs for high-frequency phrases encountered by the professional reporter. Conceived by Linda Lee, a woman with a gift for creating catchy briefs, Brief Relief is an invaluable resource for court reporters, captioners, and CART providers interested in shortening their writing. With more than 25,000 real-time-ready one-stroke briefs for common phrases, Brief Relief is a useful reference in the quest to reduce everyday phrases to one streamlined stroke. Students will also find the book immensely helpful as an aid to dictionary- building.
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Polysyllabic words edition!
Brief Relief 2 is a compilation of one-stroke briefs for 2+ syllable words encountered by the professional reporter. Designed as a complement to its predecessor, Brief Relief 2 is an invaluable resource for court reporters, CART providers, captioners, and students interested in shortening their writing. Jam-packed with 46,000+ real-time-ready one-stroke briefs, Brief Relief 2 is a useful reference in the quest to reduce everyday words to one streamlined stroke. Includes a plethora of medical terms.
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Just what the doctor ordered!
Brief Relief 3 is a compilation of one-stroke conflict-free briefs for medical terminology encountered by today's professional reporter. A real time-saver, the briefs in this latest volume are arranged alphabetically within 40+ medical specialties, making it a cinch to prepare for a particular health care practitioner. Jam-packed with 8,400+ real-time-ready one-stroke briefs, Brief Relief 3 is a useful reference in the quest to reduce complex medical terms to one streamlined stroke. Plus the "Extra Relief" section includes briefs for 200+ medications and much, much more!
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Brief Relief 1, 2, and 3
are brought to you by
Linda Lee, M.Ed.
The Briefs Doctor
Brief Relief (phrases edition), Brief Relief 2 (multisyllabic words edition), and Brief Relief 3 (medical edition) feature an extensive collection of clever one-stroke real-time-ready briefs compiled by Linda Lee, a woman with a passion for writing, including the stenographic sort. Hailing from Cambridge, Massachusetts, her employment history includes positions where publishing, writing, and copy editing were center stage. Fueled by a passion for the pursuit of knowledge and possessing the heart of a teacher, Lee worked for a book publisher, management consulting companies, and in various staff and management positions at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the MIT Sloan School of Management. She earned a master of education degree at Cambridge College. Lee also attended the Allied School of Court Reporting in Cranston, Rhode Island, under the expert tutelage of the late Cathi Annis-Burnham, veteran court reporter-owner, which ignited her passion for and eventual fluency in stenographic shorthand and machine stenography.
Lee is the proprietor of LML Communications, which offers high-quality scoping and proofreading services to discerning reporters who value her knowledge of the rules governing the English language in terms of editing the verbatim record.
Lee is the moderator of The Brief Exchange on Facebook and a frequent contributor to court reporter punctuation and briefs forums. She is the author of Brief Relief: 25,000+ Potent One-Stroke Briefs for Common Phrases, released in 2016, Brief Relief 2, 46,000+ Potent One Stroke Briefs for 2+ Syllable Words, released in 2019, and Brief Relief 3 - Extra Strength Medical Edition, released in 2022. Each has been warmly received by the reporting community. Lee coached students enrolled in the scopist track of PAF Training Programs (formerly known as StenoTrain). She also presented at the USCRA Annual Convention 2020, continuing to inspire stenographic court reporters to embrace the power of briefs.
Interested in what your colleagues are saying about "Brief Relief"? Here's a small sampling of unsolicited feedback.
Cindy L. Sebo, Nationally Certified Registered Merit Reporter, Certified Real-Time Reporter, Certified LiveNote Reporter, Registered Professional Reporter, Certified Court Reporter, Certified Shorthand Reporter, California Shorthand Reporter, New York Real-Time Certified Reporter, New York Certified Reporter, Real-Time Systems Administrator, Remote Counsel/LiveLitigation Authorized Reporter
"Firstly, I just want to state that these books of yours are FREAKIN' AMAZING. I love to brief to begin with, but yours even take me to a higher level than ever expected. YOU ARE A FREAKIN' GENIUS W/ALL THE BRIEFS. LOVE 'EM! Yes, yes, yes, I too appreciate you and what you do with these series. It's truly amazing ... amazing .... amazing. Thank you for taking the time to put together these brief books. I know it takes a lot of time and effort on your part, and so I wanted you to know how much it means to me to be able to use this and get faster and faster and faster and cleaner writing and cleaner writing. It really is amazing how you put these together. THANKS AGAIN FOR ALL YOUR HARD WORK AND DILIGENCE. You are a gem to MANY OF US in the reporter profession. Linda, you are a blessing. YOU ARE THE BRIEFS DOCTOR, QUEEN, KING, MASTER, EXCELLENCY, PRESIDENT ... ALL OF THOSE."
Susan Toms Ingraham, court reporter
“Everyone needs to get Linda Lee's book on briefs! It's like hitting the EASY button :) Thanks, Linda! And you're so unselfish to share on here what's in the book!”
Jerry Coash, Sr., court reporter
“I GUARANTEE this book will lower your blood pressure by 5 points. Guaranteed. Do something right now to improve your health - buy this book!”
Leslie Pingley, court reporter
"Love your book!”
Sally Martin Williams, court reporter
“Brief Relief” has jump-started my efforts to write short and brief more. I have come a long way with my briefing because this book makes so much sense in the way it is formatted. Thank you again, Linda, for your ongoing commitment to our profession and for your generosity with your information on the public reporters' websites. I love this book!!!!!!!!”
Katiemarie Puntoriero, court reporter
“Thank you again, Linda! These are so, so helpful and are making my depo go so smoothly!!”
Cynthia Conforti, court reporter
“Have it. Love it. Invaluable. I may be no Mark Kislingbury, but they are certainly entering the "respectable" arena with your book. I literally scope my transcripts and keep your book right next to my computer so I don't have to keep getting up.”
Christine Mullinax-Byerly, court reporter
"Linda, you never cease to amaze me!! You are the absolute best working mind out there in CR! I'm getting so much more efficient and faster with every "family" I implement from "Brief Relief" and you just keep on giving. The true energizer of briefs!
I just love having connected with you and am so grateful for all you share.
NOTE: If you haven't purchased Linda's book "Brief Relief," do it now!!! It will change your writing life and give new meaning to having more free time. I can't say enough positives about the book and the methodology she uses to make it sensible and memorable in your writing. 100% unsolicited; 100% authenticity!"
Lorena Barron, court reporter
“If you haven't bought her book, I suggest you get it. It is WONDERFUL!! So many, many briefs you will love!”
Susan Asher Zielie, court reporter
"You always have such great brief suggestions, I highly recommend this awesome reference resource!!! "Book" just doesn't fit this piece of mastery.”
Jerry Coash Sr., court reporter
“For anyone who hasn't already done so, I would encourage you to purchase Linda Lee's "Brief Relief." It's invaluable to me along with Laurie Boucke's software, "Briefs/Medically Encountered,” and Ed Varallo's "Ed's Steno Pro." Invaluable.”
"Once again, Linda Lee comes through! I STRONGLY - s-t-r-o-n-g-l-y, recommended every reporter to buy her book. I use it every day. It will add enjoyment to your career as a court reporter and give you a greater quality of life. No kidding."
Claire McGinn, court reporter
“These are great, Linda!!! I bought your phrase book a few weeks ago! It is fantastic! I love your simple briefs. No crazy finger maneuvers! I am dying for a break from work to really go through it properly and get down to writing much shorter. Thank you for putting it together. Best book of briefs I have come across. 'Brief Relief': two thumbs up!"
Amy C. Rosato, court reporter
“I bought it. I haven't had any time to start studying it. The book is mind-boggling. lol. A wealth of briefs for sure. No disappointment here!”
Lorena Ford, court reporter
“Thank you so much for putting this book together! I am sooo loving it!”
Christine Mullinax-Byerly, court reporter
“If you think these are great, you should get her book!! "Brief Relief" is a game changer in every way possible!! Love the logic that you put into your groupings! You really have changed my life! I've actually gotten some of it back because I write cleaner and more efficient!! It's so very true, Linda! Your mission has been accomplished for sure. You have a wonderful way of simplifying what I CONSTANTLY overcomplicate. So grateful to have found YOU and your book!
Linda, you've changed my work world, which has changed my life! You're my steno superstar!!
My speed has drastically increased after getting "Brief Relief" by Linda Lee. It's phenomenal! She does the briefs in "families" so it's so easy to remember the root one. Then she continues using consistent endings for additional words in a phrase. Has changed my writing world for sure!
That's my favorite and most valued part of Brief Relief. I have been able to increase my intro and use of briefs by 50% because of the way she created the briefs. You get the brief for "do you know" which then expands into ten plus more with additional added keys that are then used when you get to the family of briefs for "did you know". So the technique allows you to skip the overload part because you're not varying much on the additional words that are consistently used after different starting phrases. I too was hesitant because of your reason and have been amazed at how efficiently the system works. My only challenge is adding more to implement.
This is an impartial endorsement, by the way. I asked dozens of questions to Linda Lee personally prior to purchasing the book, which she kindly addressed clearly and honestly with no sales intent hidden. In turn, I gathered a Facebook friend/advisor in turn. Just my experience that I hope helps some struggling as I did.”
Teri Noce-Reedy, court reporter
“Your book came in the mail this week and I'm sooooo excited!! I keep changing what I want to focus on learning as I flip through it! I love all of the briefs!!!!”
Pam Hope, court reporter
“I bought the book Brief Relief by Linda Lee, which is all phrases, and I use it constantly. It's my new Bible. Worth a million bucks!!
I cannot express to you how much this book has changed my life! Your briefs are easy to remember and incorporate into my writing perfectly. When I'm scoping and notice a phrase I've written out, I grab that book and look up the brief. It's not just a phrase that I've written in two or three strokes but many more, and you have a perfect one-stroke brief. "What is your educational background." One of my favs!
I purchased a 5x8 refillable notebook with alphabet dividers so I can make a smaller version of your book to take with me on jobs. I always get there early and I just sit and practice the ones I use the most.
I have been a reporter for 25 years and I've purchased more books than China has rice but nothing comes close to your incredible masterpiece! It should be mandatory for every student. Thank you for compiling it for reporters everywhere.”
Leesah Villegas-Teran, court reporter
"Linda Lee, I love the book. It's so easy to find the brief you need and the briefs are very easy to remember."
Sara Czartolomna, court reporter
"I received your magnum opus of briefs today, and it is beautiful! It's extremely well organized, and you are brilliant. Thank you so much!"
Allison Decker, court reporting student, creator of www.allthingssteno.org
"If you’re into briefing, I highly recommend this book, www.briefreliefbook.com. I have most all of the books I’ve heard recommended to shorten my writing, including:
Brief Encounters – over 45,000 conflict-free one-stroke briefs for words and short phrases
Ed’s Steno Pro – invaluable introduction to briefing, the concepts and basics of great briefing
Magnum Steno – Mark Kislingbury’s theory, arguably the best way to shorten your writing (but involves changing a lot of what I’ve already learned – wish I had started with this)
Of all of these, I’ve found Brief Relief to be the most valuable to me. Why? It’s full of phrases…TONS of phrases. And they’re all intuitive to me, aligned with how I would think to brief (but haven’t thought of yet, as is the case with the majority of the briefs). Truly a gold mine. I have spent hundreds and hundreds of dollars on material to master how I want to write. If I could go back and only had $50 to spend, I’d buy Brief Relief.
#PSA #publicserviceannouncement #notapaidendorsement (Although I do hold the author in the highest regard.)”
Deanna Warner, court reporter
“I've got mine on my desk at the courthouse! When I'm doing transcription of audio CDs from other courts, I am always going, ‘Is there a brief for this?!?’ Nine times out of ten, sure enough it's in the book. I've noticed that since I started using the book, I'm getting better at briefing. Best way to build your brief vocabulary! Thank you for this book! It's a great help!”
Andrew Howell, court reporter, England
"YOU ARE AWESOME!!! Look what arrived on the doorstep today! It's an amazing book, and you're an amazing person. I LOVE IT!!! Thank you so much for your attention to detail and great customer service. Your work is quite brilliant. Thank you!"
Debra Flamer, court reporter
"Linda, I am in total awe of your book I just received the other day!!! I'm only on the "able" phrases thus far. I so look forward to getting time this weekend to really focus on incorporating your awesome work! I'm a do-it-yourself real-timer having incorporated many theories and briefs and writing styles over the years, and I can't wait to delve further into your work. Thank you so much for the time and dedication you put into creating this masterpiece of a creation for court reporters. Much success in your future and current endeavors. You are truly blessed, and I'm so grateful to have seen your book in a post in a random check I did on Facebook. Gotta love technology and the marketing capabilities it affords us!"
Theresa Porcello, court reporter
"By the way, Linda Lee, I just got your book. Wow! I feel an obsession coming on. Thank you for taking the time to do that. So great!"
Marta Grimes, court reporter
"I just got my book, too. Great suggestions. Thank you, Linda Lee!"
Eric Guillet, court reporter, France
“That's it! I received Linda's book. Linda Lee made an incredible and titanic work. All the court reporters should have this book. It's a real help for every day. Even if I write in French, I found a brilliant idea inspired from Linda's book by using H for the negative shape of the sentences. Example: je veux (I want) affirmative (SKWR / WAO), je ne veux pas (I don't want) negative (SWKR / WHAO). Otherwise I have to type (SKWR/TPH/WAO/PS), il est (he is) affirmative (KWRZ), il n'est pas (he isn't) négative (KWHRZ). Too brilliant, and other ideas come to me. Thank you!!! As Linda Lee says in her book, “Be adventurous; keep your mind open.” Brief Relief is for everyone! So now it's up to you to get it or not!
Another thing I do appreciate: Your book allows everyone to build great briefs if someone wants to. It's very different from other brief methods I see. Which is why I say and underline it, You did a terrific job with briefs. It makes sense even for a French. Wahoo! I can immediately imagine how helpful it is for English spoken. And it's very clever to have built the Table of Contents that way! Really efficient. So amazing it is. And, yes, I am the first one in France. Happy days!”
Libby Garcia, court reporting student
"I just received my Brief Relief book in the mail from Linda Lee. I feel faster just holding it!"
Kellie Zollars, court reporter
"I just got the book in the mail yesterday. Thanks! I know once I open the envelope I won't get my work done for a while, so my reward for finishing this next transcript is opening the envelope."
Melissa Burdine-Rodolfich, court reporter
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Cheryl Parrish, court reporter
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Linda Ballou Faria, court reporter
“Book arrived today!! Thanks for making our job a "little" easier!! Now I can bring the book with me to depos!”
Lilli Ruggeri, court reporting student
"Woohoo! Got the book yesterday. Love it. I had been hoping you would compile your briefs into a book. They just make sense. Thank you for, I'm sure, the countless hours you put into the book. I'm at my writer now entering the briefs."
Lauren Lawrence, court reporter
"I have been working on phrasing and I always enjoy and value your briefs . . . I'm actually adding briefs from your book right now, and I'm loving, loving, loving it. They make so much sense coming from a StenEd background. Thank you!"
Jamie Asbury, court reporter
"Linda, I am so excited to receive this book and see what tricks you have up your sleeve!! When I go to Facebook to look up a brief or see that you have commented on someone's post, I always look to see what your brilliant mind has come up with or what you might suggest. You are an inspiration!!"
Keith Rowan II, court reporter, creator of Facebook's "Court Reporter Briefs That Make You Go Hmm?!
"Linda is one of the most gifted brief whisperers I've come across. There are a few people who can quickly and easily think of a brief for anything. Linda is one of those. If I ever want a source for a brief, you want one of those people. As someone else mentioned, "Brief Encounters" is mostly single words. Linda's is entirely phrases, which, for most reporters, are much more helpful. The easiest way to write 225+ WPM easily or to become a realtime writer is to be a phrase master. The possibilities are endless. This book sure looks like a good asset on that journey!"
Celeste Poppe, court reporter
"I always look for your Facebook posts on the Brief Exchange, Linda. I'm so thrilled to be able to purchase your book!"
Ruby Mitchell, court reporter
"This book by Linda Lee is steno brilliance. Linda, your briefs are awesome! You are certainly moving in the right direction. Experienced reporter or struggling student, you've got the "magic touch" that many of us are seeking. Thank you!
#briefrelief #getyours #addittoyourarsenal"
Karen Stroop Barton, court reporter
"I am confident your book will be a great resource for many reporters!!! Your briefs are some of my favorites!!! Best wishes in future success!!!"
Delicia McCray, court reporter
"Your briefs always look like great ones to me (practicing almost 30 years). Now can you publish a book on how to remember them?"
Karen Raymond Schrader, court reporter
"Linda is well known for her awesome briefs she has posted in various court reporting Facebook groups. She has shared some real gems with me too!"
Sindee Baum, court reporting student
"I follow you on Facebook and love your suggested briefs. I purchased this book and love the variety of briefs. I learned the Moody Method at College of Court Reporting, and many of Linda Lee's briefs make sense with my theory, which is close to Sten Ed theory from what I've seen. I highly recommend it!”
Lance Steinbeisser, court reporter
“Linda Lee, you’re the best. Thank you so much! I have been looking for something like this. Wishing you great success!”
Monette Benoit, court reporter, CART captioner, career coach, consultant, author, creator of www.crrbooks.com
“I have followed the posts of Linda Lee, M.Ed., with great interest. I believe that I would have been a better CART captioner if I had known phrasing(s) as Linda Lee has created. Many, many students and court reporters will benefit from her creativity and her determination to share. "Brief Relief" clearly is a gift to this profession."
Veronica Kubat, court reporter
“Just ordered mine. I am SO excited. Linda, thank you for your knowledge and your briefing intuition. I know this will be a tremendous help to me. Your briefs are amazing and I've been reporting for 35 years. They will be hugely beneficial."