Here Is the Exact Video Filter That Created Lawyer Cat
When Texas lawyer Dan Ponton engaged a filter on his computer, mistakenly transforming himself into a cat while testifying remotely in front of a judge in the state’s 394th Judicial District, Debugger wasted no time jumping on the story.
How to Use a Cat Filter Like the One in the Viral Zoom Courtroom Video
And-perhaps most importantly-how to turn it off
I like a challenge, so naturally, I dove right in. We wanted to determine exactly which filter Ponton had used so that anyone who wanted to become a Zoom cat themselves could do so. My first thought — like everyone else — was that Ponton likely switched on a filter in the Zoom program itself. Zoom does have video filters, but a quick perusal revealed that they’re fairly basic. You can superimpose a halo on your head, but the cat filter was nowhere to be found.
My next thought was the Snap Camera app, which lets you apply Snapchat filters to your computer’s webcam feed in realtime. If you want to become a Lawyer Cat right now, Snap Camera is your best bet — it’s modern software that is easy to install and use, and it’s compatible with today’s webcams and third-party programs like Zoom and Skype. Snap Camera does have a variety of cat filters — as well as filters that make you look like you’re giving a TED Talk or becoming a potato — though I still didn’t find the exact filter from Ponton’s video.
Thankfully, I never part with tech gear.
I wrote up a tutorial on using Snap Camera to become a Lawyer Cat. At the same time, my editors and I were doing more digging. Other journalists, including Rachel Metz at CNN, were on the story too. The conclusion? Although Snap Camera is still the best way to easily become a Zoom cat today, it looked likely that Ponton had actually fallen victim to a bug from the ancient program Dell Webcam Central, which a chemistry professor — writing in 2013 — said had turned him into a cat during a crucial job interview. We added this new tip at the last minute and went to press. It was a solid bit of breaking news journalism. I fully expect the Pulitzer…