Center offers informative, fun videos about courts

When thinking about court operations, access-to-justice issues, online dispute resolution and eviction moratoria, most probably don't think about chef hats, Einstein wigs, construction hard hats and Michael J. Fox "Back to the Future" costumes.

Those are just a few of the props that National Center for State Courts consultants Danielle Hirsch and Zach Zarnow use when they host “Tiny Chats”--a series of brief, informal videos about court operations and access-to-justice topics that try to use humor and fun themes to inform viewers (

“Tiny Chats” recently reached a significant milestone 50,000 views thanks in part to a series of videos that have provided courts with eviction diversion resources. The project has presented opportunities for guest appearances from officials with the U.S. Department of Justice and U.S. Office of Housing and Urban Development. It has also welcomed other guests including Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice Nathan Hecht, Urban Institute Senior Fellow Solomon Greene, and Margaret Hagan, director of Stanford Law School's Legal Design Lab.

“Danielle and I are thrilled that our idea to combine FDR's fireside chats with Schoolhouse Rock-while keeping things short, digestible, and informative-has resonated with so many people,” Zarnow said.

“We know how busy everyone is, and we really wanted to find a way to cut through the wealth of webinars and reports to offer courts an easy way to keep up with best practices and to learn about innovations around the country”"

“Tiny Chats” reach a diverse audience of court staff, administrators, and judges, as well as legal aid providers and advocates from across the United States and more than four continents.

"Tiny Chats" have become a part of training programs and college and law school curriculums and have been used by organizations like the National Association of State Judicial Educators, the State of Georgia Alternative Dispute Resolution initiative, Massachusetts trial courts and the State of Iowa Accountability Program.

“Tiny Chats” is, in part, supported by the Pew Charitable Trust Civil Legal System Modernization project.

The National Center for State Courts, headquartered in Williamsburg, Va., is a nonprofit court organization dedicated to improving the administration of justice by providing leadership and service to the state courts. Founded in 1971 by the Conference of Chief Justices and Chief Justice of the United States Warren E. Burger, NCSC provides education, training, technology, management, and research services to the nation's state courts.


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