Saturday, March 6, 2010

How to see automated captioning for new YouTube videos

As I hope most everyone knows, YouTube recently started providing automated transcription/captioning for all new videos uploaded to YouTube. If you missed the announcement, here's an article about it:

I just did a search for a new YouTube video to doublecheck how to make the captions appear. It turns out that there are a couple of steps to take to show the automated captioning, and that merely seeing the "CC" with a red background on the bottom of the video doesn't indicate you will see captions now.

For example, go to:

Click on the "CC" on the bottom part of the video and wait for the menu to pop up.

Click on "Transcribe Audio (Beta)" at the top. This turns on the automated transcription/captioning which is done for new videos. (Most older videos won't have that feature enabled yet.)

After activating the automated captioning, one can then choose to change the caption settings (the font and the size of the captions) and one's account settings. (If you don't yet have an account on YouTube, it's helpful to set one up so you can set captioning preferences, save your favorites, create playlists, etc.). I just changed my own YouTube account settings so that automatic captioning is always activated.

The captioning is pretty cool!

Note that the automated captioning will invariably have errors in it if the owner of the video hasn't corrected it. Some of the captioning will probably be funny when it hasn't been corrected yet. Let me know of any really funny ones you see!