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Lawyer Scrambles After He Can't Figure Out How To Turn Off Cat Filter During Zoom Hearing

@lawrencehurley/Twitter

The video chat has become the new normal in a time when conducting group meetings in person has become a health risk.

However, the convenience of teleconferencing can also result in hilarious and embarrassing mishaps like the one this Texas lawyer experienced.

Attorney Rod Ponton seemed to experience technical difficulty during a virtual court proceeding that required a judge to take "paws."

The attorney did not realize his daughter left a kitten filter on, prompting Judge Roy B. Ferguson of the 394th Judicial District Court in Texas to kindly ask the digitally whiskered Ponton to check his Zoom settings.

Make sure you swallow that coffee to avoid spitting it out on your screen before watching the clip, below.

The judge said:

"Mr. Ponton, I believe you have a filter turned on in the video settings."
"You might want to …"

But the cute little kitty face on the screen opened its mouth and Ponton's voice was heard asking:

"Can you hear me judge?"

Ferguson responded:

"I can hear you. I think it's a filter …"

Ponton—who appeared to other participants on the session as a slightly panicked kitty—said he was aware of the problem and continued:

"And I don't know how to remove it. I've got my assistant here, she's trying to, but I'm prepared to go forward with it … I'm here live. I'm not a cat."

The judge deadpanned:

"I can see that."

The cat filter was disabled minutes after the clip ended, thanks to the judge who helped walk Ponton through the process.

Twitter was in stitches over the purr-fect clip.






Later in a CNN phone interview, Ferguson confirmed the feline fumble really did take place.

"It did actually happen. There was no joke involved."
"When a child had been using the computer, (the child) turned on a filter. Of course, the lawyer would have no reason to even know that feature exists."

Despite the snafu, Ferguson commended the professionalism of the session's participants.

"If you watch carefully, no one mocked him or laughed at him. It just showed the professionalism and the dignity that these lawyers bring to virtual hearings."

He also used the hilarious incident as a teachable moment on Twitter and attached the YouTube link to the video.



So make sure you do a quick check of your settings the next time you log on for your Zoom session.

There is a paw-ssibility you may not appear as yourself to those watching you.