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How to Quickly Transcribe a YouTube Video to Text — Woman Transcribing in a Notebook
How to Quickly Transcribe a YouTube Video to Text — Woman Transcribing in a Notebook
Alex Mcomie 107x107
Jul 11, 2022

How to Quickly Transcribe a YouTube Video to Text

While some content should be video-only, you may also be interested in transcribing some of your YouTube videos into text form.

This gives your audience another way to consume your content, and it’s much easier to transcribe an existing video than it is to come up with a totally unique text.

Writing a YouTube video out in text might sound tedious and time-consuming.

Fortunately, there are a number of different solutions that offer much more efficient approaches to transcribing YouTube content.

In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about converting your YouTube videos into text.


1. Use Voice Typing in Google Docs

One of the lesser-known features of Google Docs is the option to enter text through voice.

Unfortunately, voice typing is currently only available in English, so speakers of other languages will need to wait for a forthcoming update.

With this feature, you can simply play the YouTube video on one device and start running the voice type tool in Google Docs on another device.

You could even have them going in two different windows on the same computer.

Keep in mind that there’s no guarantee the Google tool will get the transcription exactly right.

You should make a second pass yourself to fix up any typos or grammar issues produced by the voice typing system.

Still, this is a much faster option than typing the entire text out yourself.


2. Leverage Third-Party Software

Transcribing directly into Google Docs is an easy DIY solution, but there are also third-party transcription services that can help make your life easier.

Transcription services may offer greater accuracy than the Google Docs voice typing tool.

Furthermore, some of these platforms support many different languages, so they’re ideal for creators who are working in a language other than English.

Trint, for example, is an audio transcription provider that is currently compatible with 31 unique languages.

It offers dedicated solutions for individuals, teams, and even large-scale enterprises.

The AI tool is a good way to create accurate transcriptions, and Trint meets ISO 27001 certification standards for user security.

On the other hand, there are also platforms like Rev that rely on human transcribers in addition to an automatic tool.

Naturally, paying real people to transcribe your video and audio files will usually be more expensive than paying for an AI service.

Still, you may find that people are better at capturing nuance and avoiding the transcription mistakes that an AI tool could make.

Happy Scribe is another option that combines both artificial intelligence and real language professionals.

We also recommend Temi, which offers automatic transcription and a free trial with full transcription for one piece of content up to 45 minutes long.


3. Use Automatic Captions

Instead of going through Google Docs, you also have the option to generate transcriptions through YouTube directly.

After enabling automatic captioning on your YouTube videos, YouTube will use speech recognition to create transcriptions and display them as subtitles for users who are consuming your content.

Once you set up captions for a video, you can always look at existing captions in the YouTube Studio.

Start by clicking “subtitles,” then select the video you want to view.

From there, you’ll be able to make changes to resolve any issues or inaccuracies stemming from the automatic transcription.

Since AI captions are inherently unreliable, it’s a good idea to review the automatically generated subtitles before publishing them with your video.

Even though the subtitles should generally be accurate overall, it’s impossible to predict what mistakes might be included in the final version.

If you want to pull a standalone transcript from those captions, go to the YouTube video itself and click the three dots on the right side just underneath the video.

You should see an option to “open transcript.”

At that point, you’ll be able to access the automatically generated captions (with your own revisions) as a separate text.


4. Transcribe Videos Yourself

For most people, typing out the text of a video at full speed is an insurmountable challenge.

However, this could actually be your most efficient option if you’re a fast, accurate typer who’s willing to take the time to do it yourself.

One thing that makes YouTube transcription easier is the option to play videos at different speeds.

You can set playback to 0.25, 0.5, or 0.75 speed to make sure you understand what’s being said and have time to type it out in text form.

The advantage of this process is that you won’t have to do any further editing beyond basic proofreading for typos and minor errors.

While an AI tool could completely mistake one word for another, this is unlikely to happen when you’re transcribing a video that you published yourself.

A transcription foot pedal can help you transcribe more efficiently by enabling you to control the video playback with your foot.

With a pedal, you won’t waste any time switching back and forth between the video and transcription.

Controlling a video with your foot might sound counterintuitive, but you should get used to the functionality relatively quickly.

Some transcriptionists also use shorthand software that allows them to type words much more quickly.

If you’re working on European content, for example, you could set up a configuration so that your computer converts the word “euro” into the € symbol.

These services are thoroughly customizable, enabling transcriptionists to set up whatever shorthand works for them.


Final Thoughts

Turning a YouTube video into a text document might sound like a lot of work, but you can get this done relatively quickly if you know how to start.

These are just a few of the most efficient ways to transcribe a YouTube video as accurately as possible.

Make sure to check out our website to learn more about transcription and media localization.

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