“I’m here live, I’m not a cat” were the hilarious statements made by attorney Rod Ponton on Tuesday, February 9, 2021. This assertion was important because of a minor confusion created during the 394th Judicial District Court hearing held on Zoom, where Ponton was appearing as a cat filter. It was oblivious to him until the presiding Judge, Roy Ferguson, called his attention to a filter turned on in his Zoom settings.
“Oh, that was just a mistake by my secretary,” Ponton said. He further explained that he was using her computer and for some reasons unknown to him, she had a cat filter on. The case was one involving a young man trying to leave America with contraband. Upon instructions from the judge, the cat filter was taken off, and the meeting continued seamlessly. Ponton stated that he had never seen such a thing happen during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, he was also happy to take people off their seats during these trying times.
The saga was handled with dignity and grace as no one yelled or mocked him. It simply showed the empathy and hard work that lawyers have even during virtual hearings.
No one is above making a mistake. Even Tiffany Haddish, a renowned comedian, didn’t realize other callers could see her while she was using the restroom during a video call. Judge Roy Ferguson enjoined the public to ensure their filters are off before engaging in a zoom meeting.