Audiovisual content today receives post-production treatment to make it more accessible to diverse audiences. Some materials require transcription while others need captioning. There are differences between the two processes, and each one has its legal requirements, benefits, and uses. Each one can work independently, but they can also work together to make the content form accessible and user-friendly. These processes can boost audio and video SEO and help increase brand awareness.
Captioning versus transcription
Transcription and captioning are two separate processes. In transcription, the entire audio or speech is converted into a written text document. Captioning, on the other hand, divides the dialogue into several time-coded parts or caption frames. Transcription may serve as the basis of captioning but each one includes a specific purpose. Companies like Verbit provide intelligent software and artificial and human intelligence to provide high-quality solutions for captioning and transcription for diverse industries.
Transcription can make audio-only content accessible. Accurate captioning is currently legally required in the US to ensure people who can hear and those who are deaf or are hearing-impaired access videos equally.
Definitions of the processes
Transcription is the process of converting audio or speech into a written text document, with no time information. A transcriptionist can either utilize a clean read or verbatim method. With the latter, the transcription includes every word, including sound effects and utterances. This is typical of scripted speech for a skit, movie, or TV show. In a clean read transcription, the transcriptionist adapts the text to ensure fluid reading, which is suitable for unscripted content like recorded speaking events or interviews.
Captioning divides the transcript text or the spoken parts into chunks. Captions are time-coded to synchronize each frame with the video’s audio. The captions are shown at the bottom of the screen. Captions allow the viewers to follow the video’s dialogue.
There are two forms of captions, open captions that are embedded in the video and closed captions. The former cannot be turned on or off. The viewer can choose to view or hide closed captions. Since the primary audience for videos with closed captions is the deaf and hearing impaired, the dialogue and other audio and sound effects are mentioned in the captions.
The benefits of captioning and transcription
Transcription allows people to enjoy video content better. Likewise, it can be the basis for creating a closed caption, especially if you are carrying out the process in-house.
Providing a transcript of a radio show, podcast or film makes the content accessible. The transcript can improve the comprehension of ESL listeners. It can increase user interaction, too. It can help with SEO, as transcripts can increase organic search results and improve the number of unique visitors.
Captions should be accurate, so you can appreciate their benefits. Aside from providing access to the deaf and hard of hearing viewers, captions can help people comprehend the dialogue better. Likewise, it can assist students in learning English as a second language. Moreover, it can encourage viewers with attention deficits and those with learning disabilities by helping them maintain concentration.
Whether you choose captioning or transcription, ensure you perceive its purpose and think about what you require to make your content compliant with the legal guidelines.