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Getting the Transcription of a Video From YouTube

Christopher Nguyen
Christopher Nguyen
Posted in Zoom Mar 31 · 2 Apr, 2020
Getting the Transcription of a Video From YouTube

Video transcriptions are the textual representation of spoken content in a video file. The process of adding subtitles to a video is done by human transcriptionists, speech recognition software, or a combination of the two. YouTube is the world’s largest video-sharing community, where people view over 5 billion videos daily. YouTube transcripts are used to create captions and contain only the audio text in the YouTube video.

Benefits of YouTube Transcription & Captioning

There are numerous reasons why people incorporate transcripts and captions into their businesses, as listed below. 

  • For starters, their availability makes content accessible to persons with limited or no hearing. 

  • People who want to watch videos in noisy surroundings can easily consume the content using transcripts and captioning. 

  • YouTube video transcripts also help people who don’t have expertise in the language spoken to understand the video better.

  • People trying to learn the language spoken in the video can use the text to improve their vocabulary and obtain spelling references.

  • Video transcripts provide valuable text that can be ranked and indexed. 

  • Inbound traffic and user engagement significantly increase since videos with transcripts rank higher in searches boosting SEO. 

  • YouTube video transcripts provide viewers with a different way to digest information. Viewers can scan a video for keywords if they are interested in a particular word. The transcript can be interactive and highlight words as they’re spoken in real-time. This timed-text approach keeps viewers engaged as they simultaneously read and hear the content.

How to Get a Transcript of a YouTube Video

It’s relatively easy to download a transcript from YouTube. Keep in mind that transcripts are only available for videos with closed captioning. 

YouTube has Google’s speech recognition software for automatically generated transcription for most of the videos as soon as they are uploaded. Some people provide their own transcripts, which are typically better quality than those produced automatically. It’s crucial to remember that a machine cannot offer a perfect transcript of any video or audio file. The accuracy of an automated transcript greatly depends on audio clarity, accents, conciseness of the speakers, and other external factors.

Free Captioning Tool on YouTube

  • Log into YouTube and open the video.

  • Click on More Options (three dots below the video).

  • Select the Open Transcript option from the drop-down menu.

  • Once you click Open Transcript, copy and paste all the lines of text that appear to an editor of your choice to have a complete transcript that you can edit.

  • To remove the timestamps, click on the More Options icon (three horizontal dots) and select Toggle Timestamps.

Now you know how to get a YouTube video transcript. This option provides automatic (English auto-generated) and manually captioned videos.

Transcribe with Google Docs

Google Docs has a built-in voice typing feature that listens to video or audio and automatically types what it hears. Here’s how to get started:

  • Make sure the PC is listening directly to the audio from the PC’s speakers.

  • Open Google Docs.

  • Start a new document.

  • Under Tools, select Voice Typing.

  • Open the video on YouTube.

  • Play the video with sound and click on the microphone (Click on Speak icon) on Google Docs.

Google Docs will automatically type what it hears. The accuracy plummets if the audio has background noise or the people in the video are stuttering. This particular speech-to-text service also suffers from occasional glitches. Sometimes the tool will stop transcribing, and you must click the Voice Typing tool to restart. 

Automatic speech-to-text services have come a long way but need help to achieve human levels of accuracy. In most cases, your transcription will require heavy editing to make it perfect.

Download Transcript From YouTube

The speech-to-text services market is rife with tools targeting the largest video-sharing site. Some websites offer tools that can convert YouTube videos into text, promising high accuracy with a short turnaround. Popular sites include Clipconverter, Free CC Converter Tool, Keepvid (also offers video download), and Way With Words. 

YouTube transcript downloads from these sites will differ in time delivery and quality. Still, one thing is consistent; the content’s accuracy is limited by the fact that speech-generated transcription usually contains a relatively high amount of errors.  

How to Get YouTube Transcripts on iPhone and Android 

If you’re using a mobile device, here is how you can obtain your transcript:

  • Open the YouTube app on your iPhone or Android, click on the video of interest, and open it.

  • On the video description, click on the arrow to expand the video description section.

  • Scroll down to the bottom to locate the transcript section.

  • Click on ‘Show Transcript.’ The transcript will appear below your video with time stamps to allow you to skip to the video sections you want quickly.

How to Get YouTube Transcripts on Desktop 

If you’re on a desktop, you can follow these steps to get your transcript:

  • Open your browser and visit YouTube.

  • Search for the video whose transcript you want and open it.

  • On the video title section, locate the three dots on the right-hand side and click.

  • A small menu will pop up where you will see the ‘Show Transcript’ option.

  • Click on it, and your transcript will appear on the right side of the screen. You can also toggle the time stamps and jump to different video sections.

The process is straightforward and also includes the option to translate your transcript into another language. But the catch is the language of interest has to be available first. It is also worth noting that some auto-generated transcripts may be inaccurate, meaning you may need to edit the transcript for errors and other grammar-related issues. 

Leave It to the Experts

With over 15 years of experience and thousands of satisfied clients, including giants like BBC and Netflix, GoTranscript offers a team of carefully selected and trained professional human transcribers ready to take your videos to the next level. We guarantee maximum accuracy through an efficient four-step process that meets deadlines while upholding 99% accuracy. Our transcribers can handle all media types, including orders featuring thick accents, multiple speakers, or background noise.

Ordering transcription and captioning services with GoTranscript is easy, affordable, and transparent, with no hidden charges. Sign up today and check the quality of our work with a free trial!