Transcribe a VisiHow Video Into an Article

Edited by Yuliya, Inukshuk, Eng, Doug Collins and 5 others

VisiHow is now all about showing people how to do things, but every video comes with a transcription for anyone who prefers to read how to guides or who is hearing impaired.

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Using the Transcription Tool

  1. 1
    The transcriber tool can be found here:
    http://visihow.com/transcriber/transcriber.php
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  2. 2
    The first part of the transcription will be listed under an "Introduction" section.
    Adding a snapshot from the video will end the Introduction section and move on to the next section.
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  3. 3
    After the Introduction is the "Steps" section.
    Every time you enter a snapshot, a new step is created. There is no need to add any formatting to get the numbered list, these are added automatically.
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  4. 4
    Before publishing fill in the title with an adjusted version of the .mp4 title.
    • Don't add the uploader's name to the title
    • Don't add the site name to the title
    • If part of a series, the title may not read well if you include the part number in the title. Instead add text explaining this into the introduction and a link to other steps within the article.
    • For example, a video title of: [Grimm] how-to-delete-your-microsoft-account-VisiHow.mp4 turns into the title: How to Delete Your Microsoft Account
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  5. 5
    After publishing a transcript, a link to its page on-site will be created near the 'publish' button until you refresh the page.
    The 'published article' link at the top of the screen should also become active (turn blue) and remain active after you refresh the page. Click either link to go to the published transcript's page.
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  6. 6
    Any links, to other on-site content or off-site content, should be added after publishing by using the 'edit' buttons on the page where the content was published.
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  7. 7
    The video will follow under all the steps.
    This is also done automatically.
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  8. 8
    Save frequently.
    This will help prevent the loss of any work and needs to be done manually by clicking 'save'. Saving, soon after you begin a new file, will let other transcribers know if a file is being worked on and help avoid more than one transcriber working on the same file.
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  9. 9
    If you need to make changes to a transcription that has already been published, like adding a step with a picture, the easiest way is to add the content in the tool and press 'publish' again.
    When the error message comes up choose 'overwrite'. This preserves all coding and categorizations and is usually a better option than deleting the published work and republishing.
    • Before you do this, make sure no one else has edited the transcription since then. If any edits were made and you use the overwrite button, you will overwrite the new edits. If there have been edits done on your article, use the article's "edit" option instead.
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  10. 10
    You also have the ability to 'prepend' or 'append' content to an already published transcription.
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  11. 11
    Mp4 titles with the uploader's name tagged (see example above) will not show up under 'articles started' on your profile.
    It will be added to the uploader's articles started list on their profile. If a title isn't tagged it will show up on your profile.
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Transcription Tool Shortcuts

  • TAB = pause / play
  • ENTER = insert snapshot at cursor position
  • Ctrl-ENTER = new line with no snapshot
  • Esc = skip backward (3 seconds)
  • BACKTICK = skip forward (3 seconds)
  • F1 = Skip Forward one Frame (great for positioning to take a snapshot)
  • F2 = Skip Backward one Frame (great for positioning to take a snapshot)
  • 'Pause while typing' = when checked will automatically start/stop audio while you type

How to transcribe videos

Speech that sounds fine in a video may not sound as good when it's written down. Keep this in mind when transcribing videos, and use your best judgement when to omit something, or when to rewrite something. The end result should not be too far from the original video, but it should also be easy to read for anyone who didn't watch the video.

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Here are some tips to help you find the right balance between transcription and writing:

  1. 1
    Omit filler words and phrases like "um," "so then," "let's see here," etc.
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  2. 2
    Omit anything that does not make sense or is gibberish.
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  3. 3
    If you decide to omit anything else, you should have a strong reason for it.
    Some reasons include: repetition, backtracking on a sentence, or completely unrelated tangents (related tangents are usually okay).
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  4. 4
    Clean-up and correct grammar usage so that the transcript reads well.
    Fix ESL (English as Second Language) as needed.
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  5. 5
    If the video shows a step that is not mentioned out loud, include it in your transcription.
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  6. 6
    The first sentence of each step should be a clear topic sentence.
    It is in bold, and is often the one people really see (while they skim the rest of the text). If necessary, rephrase this sentence to make sure the step is clear. This should be followed by non-bold text, if possible, to describe how to perform the step.
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  7. 7
    Choose the best screenshot to illustrate each step.
    Remember you can pause the video with TAB and use F1 and F2 to move the video forward or back a tiny bit at a time until you get the perfect capture.
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  8. 8
    Capitalize each letter in the title except articles, conjunctions, and prepositions.
    If you're not sure which words to capitalize, you can use this website.
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  9. 9
    Describe things that the video shows, where necessary.
    For instance, if the video says "Click on this box right here," you might say instead "Click on the blue box on the bottom left."
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  10. 10
    DOUBLE check your transcription for typos and mistakes, and TRIPLE check the title.
    If you make a mistake in the title, you will need to ask someone with admin access to correct it.
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DON'T transcribe/ publish the following:

  • Articles that help people do unethical/hurtful things.
  • Pornography, adult or mature content
  • Violent content
  • Content related to racial intolerance or advocacy against any individual, group or organisation
  • Profanity/swearing - no F bombs please!
  • Hacking/cracking content
  • Illicit drugs and drug paraphernalia content
  • Beer or hard alcohol
  • Tobacco or tobacco-related products
  • Prescription drugs
  • Weapons or ammunition (e.g. firearms, firearm components, fighting knives, stun guns)
  • Replicas or imitations of designer or other goods
  • Distribution of coursework or student essays
  • Content regarding programs which compensate users for clicking ads or offers, performing searches, surfing websites or reading emails
  • Any other content that is illegal, promotes illegal activity or infringes on the legal rights of others.
  • Any content that is against the Adsense TOS, found here.
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Tips and Suggestions

  • Develop a system. This will help save time during transcription.
  • Continually work on your typing speed and accuracy. The faster you are able to type, without making mistakes, the more audio files you can do in one day. A good target for a 1:4 transcription ratio (1 min. of audio: 4 minutes. to type) is 60-85 WPM.
  • A 5 minute file which is clear, no accent, and the speaker speaks at a normal pace, may take 20 minutes to type and 10 minutes to add photos, proofread, and add any links to the published version.
  • Use headphones.
  • Expose yourself to different accents.

Questions and Answers

I see VisiHow is hiring, and just looking into how all this works?

Where do you find the new videos to be transcribed?

In the transcription tool, in the top right you will find a drop down box. In that box, you are going to make sure that it is set to Not Published. Then you will scroll throw the list in and look for a video that is not already transcribed or tagged with a team mate name.

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I don't see any link as to how a user is registered into the VisiHow system for payment purposes. Do we actually get paid to do this work?

How do I find videos that haven't been transcribed?

I'm trying to apply to be a transcriber, but I can't find new videos

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