A court hearing via Zoom went ridiculously awry — and hilariously viral — thanks to a cute Zoom filter combined with a lack of tech savvy.
In the the clip, a judge and a lawyer (both human) are joined by another attorney, who somehow has a filter activated that transforms him into an adorable kitten as he struggles to figure out how to turn the filter off.
The judge calmly informs Ponton that “I believe you have a filter turned on in the video settings you might want to…”
In a quavering, uncertain voice reminiscent of “King of the Hill” protagonist Hank Hill, attorney Rod Ponton (who’s gone viral as “cat lawyer”) responds, “Uhhhh… we’re trying to, we’re trying — can you hear me, judge?”
“I can hear you,” the judge replies, reasserting, “I think it’s a filter…”
“I don’t know how to remove it,” Ponton tells the judge. “I’ve got my assistant here, she’s trying to but… awww… I’m prepared to go forward with it.”
Ponton then utters the hilariously unintentional punchline: “I’m here live, I’m not a cat.”
In a subsequent interview with The New York Times, Ponton revealed he was using his secretary’s computer, and she was “mortified” by the mistake.
While he admits it’s not his finest moment in a courtroom, Ponton took a lighthearted view of the Zoom gaffe.
“If I can make the country chuckle for a moment in these difficult times they’re going through, I’m happy to let them do that at my expense,” he said.
Meanwhile, Twitter response to the viral video has been through the roof, with Mariah Carey even chiming in to call in “the f**king best thing I’ve seen in YEARS!”
“I’m here live.. it’s not that.. I’m not a cat”……(the fucking best thing I’ve seen in YEARS!) https://t.co/9LtBFWi0R9
— Mariah Carey (@MariahCarey) February 10, 2021
Check out more Twitter response below.
Trump watching his lawyer right now: Is it too late to get a cat? https://t.co/55DAcqr4m1
— The Daily Show (@TheDailyShow) February 9, 2021
— Mark Critch (@markcritch) February 9, 2021
The Trump lawyers today would have been better if they were cats.
— Marc E. Elias (@marceelias) February 10, 2021
It's when lawyer cat's eyes checking the settings that did it for me. pic.twitter.com/9jnMnfDlIn
— Josh Josue (@joshfjosue) February 10, 2021
I can gauge how online everyone is by what time they sent me the lawyer as cat video today.
— Eugene Wei (@eugenewei) February 10, 2021
Any tweet that starts “A lawyer using Zoom had to let a judge know he wasn’t a cat” is must see. Just loved this. https://t.co/PKCOlQpUj2
— Tom Mendoza (@TomMendozaTalks) February 10, 2021
Thank you, Cat Lawyer. I think we all needed that today.
— Eric Lee (@ericclee1) February 10, 2021