Federal District Court Judge William L. Campbell, Jr. (Middle District, Tennessee) just issued a written opinion that effectively models how to translate Tweet and emoji images into understandable text-based legal writing.
The Complaint’s Exhibit B image was the original product the judge had to work with.
The imaged Tweet and its content were important for the opinion. But instead of simply copying and pasting the image, Judge Campbell intentionally and thoughtfully made the effort to “translate” the images into text-based legal writing. See the first indented paragraph.
Why does text-based legal writing matter so much? Because Judge Campbell’s written opinion is now just as accessible and understandable for (1) those who use audio screen readers that read out loud the original opinion, and (2) those will who access the opinion from third-party, text-only providers that would otherwise drop images from a republished opinion. Here is an example of how Judge Campbell’s format works so well when reading his decision on Casetext.
Thank you, Judge Campbell, for this strong “how to” model that other legal writers can (and should) follow.
Belts-and-suspenders question: Is it okay to include both the image and the text-based “translation”?
Absolutely! The image will be decorative and will not be doing the heavy lifting. The text still carries the load of informing the readers. Exactly as it should.