HowTo: 6 Ways of Captioning Youtube Videos Part 2

Although the first solutions of using Google’s servers to caption the text are a fail but still in beta, there are other solutions of adding captions to videos. Another solution is just making YouTube to add the time code and not the text.

The advantage of using this way is that it just make Google’s servers to just add in the time and not the text of the video, resulting in better captions than Google’s servers transcoding the audio to text and time code. Although this way is better than making Google’s servers to do all the work, this may not work as good if there is a lot of background noise or the audio compression is not good.

If you’re following this step, you will need to type out the things said in the video on your favorite text editor. It text should be formatted for 33 to 43 characters per sentence followed by a double break (recommendation). Although you can set as long of a line of caption, if the single line is too long, it will make a second line of caption. Also if the line of caption is too long for two lines of caption, it will break up the sentence into two different sections of caption.

It should follow like this

Today we are talking about costumer service, specifically [name here] customer service.

Just got off the phone with them.


There are also some tips from YouTube when adding transcripts

  • Identify long pauses (3 seconds or longer) or music in the transcript with a double line break.
  • Use double line breaks anytime you want to force a caption break.
  • Descriptions inside square brackets like [music] or [laughter] can help people with hearing disabilities to understand what is happening in your video.
  • You can also add tags like >> at the beginning of a new line to identify speakers or change of speaker.

After typing out the text, the only thing left to do in your favorite text editing program is to do is to save the text as a plain text (.txt) file.

After typing out the whole text of the video, all you need to is to upload the text onto the YouTube video.

Go to the video that you uploaded to YouTube and want to add transcript to, then click the caption option. You are greeted with the option to “Add New Captions or Transcript” or “Request Processing (English Only)” (if you did not try to let Google’s servers to caption the video). For this case, we are going to “Add New Captions or Transcript”. After you select that option, choose the file that has the text for the caption that you saved from the “Choose File” section. After selecting the caption file, we want to change the type from ” Caption file” to “Transcript file” because we did not set time code on it. All is left is to upload the file by clicking “Upload file”. After uploading the transcript file, wait for the captions to be added with a time code by Google’s servers. This may take some time depending on the length and the audio quality of the video.

Comparing to the option of letting Google’s servers to caption and transcode the video, this option takes longer but provides better results if the audio quality is good. If this option does not work well, then the next post will show you how to caption and transcode with software/online solutions.