Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Fourth Circuit to Post Argument Audio Online (Just in Time for Health Care)

Back in November, Appellate Daily ran a piece, encouraging greater public access to oral argument audio and noting that "only seven of the thirteen federal appellate courts post . . . audio to their websites." Make that eight.

"Effective with its May 2011 argument session, the [U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit] will make audio files of oral arguments available on the [circuit]'s Internet site, without charge, two days after argument." Fourth Circuit I.O.P. 34.3 (effective May 2, 2011).

Great timing. In May, the Fourth Circuit is tentatively scheduled to hear oral argument on the new federal health care law, an area of intense national debate. Interested members of the public and media throughout the country will now be able to listen from their computers.

Many thanks to the Fourth Circuit for notifying Appellate Daily of this change (in response to a letter, enclosing the November piece). Previous coverage of possible progress in other circuits is here (Eleventh Circuit) and here (D.C. Circuit).