Courtrooms, Razrs, and ringtones


New Year’s Resolution: catching up on my blogging. Along those lines, my St. Thomas colleague Fred Light brought to my attention last term to an interesting administrative order from the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida.

The order, entitled In re: Cellular Phone and Electronic Equipment Usage in the Courthouse, addresses legitimate concerns over the presence and use of cell phones — and particularly camera phones — in the courtroom. It designates persons who can bring cell or camera phones to court but warns that “[n]o cellular phones of any kind may be used in a courtroom or jury deliberations room and no photographs of any kind may be taken in any federal courthouse facility.” Penalties for violations include 30 days in jail and/or a fine of $5000 and/or punishment for contempt of court.

Woe to the first person in a Miami courtroom whose Motorola Razr blares out Iron Butterfly’s In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida as a ringtone.

Thanks to dreamingyakker at Flickr, who licensed the photo through this Creative Commons license.