Podcast Transcripts - How to get a transcription of your podcast

Last time we went through some of the reasons for providing transcribed versions of podcast episodes. This time we'll show you different ways how to produce transcripts of your episodes.

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There are many ways to convert audio to text

Of course there are many different ways for achieving the goal of having a written form of a podcast episode. They go all the way from DIY or computer automated over crowd-sourced to commercial offerings. Well go through a few of them and tell you the pros and cons of each approach.

DIY - transcribing yourself

Probably the hardest but also cheapest way is to do it yourself. There are tools to help you with this like https://transcribe.wreally.com/ which requires a $20 yearly subscription or http://otranscribe.com/ which probably is not that fancy, but free to use. You can find a lot more by searching for audio transcription tools.

Pros

  • Cheap
  • Accurate (depending on the work you put into it)

Cons

  • Takes lots and lots of time (expect at least a 1:3 ratio, so one hour of audio takes 3 hours to convert)

Computer automated

There is also software that can assist you converting your content. Dragon's voice recognition software is a well known brand in this area, but there also other vendors and solutions. Another option is open source software like audiogrep. The outcome however very much depends on the format your podcast has. Interviews or conversations with overlapping sentences or speakers with strong accents will give most softwares a hard time. An intermediate approach would be to do a first version of the transcript by using an automated tool first and then go through and correct the mistakes.

Pros

  • Cheap (when using the open-source approach)
  • Broad range of software available
  • Good to get a first version which can be corrected afterwards
  • Time efficient when it works well

Cons

  • Can get pricy (when using commercial software)
  • Limited accuracy (depending on your format, speakers accents ...)

Crowdsourced

Crowdsourcing all kinds of stuff has become very popular in the last years, so why not use this to your advantage. If you already have an avid listener base you might be able to find some among them who can do the transcription for you. Sometimes they might event do it for free or for non-monetary perks like receiving the next episode earlier than everyone else. Platforms like Fanscribed provide you with a platform to get started.

Pros

  • Free to cheap
  • Good accuracy (if you're able to find awesome people)
  • Already software available
  • Time efficient (you still have to 'manage' the crowd)

Cons

  • Not everyone has a 'crowd' available
  • Quality can vary (not everyone is equally good at transcribing)

Commercial services

The last possibility is to let professional transcribers do the work for you. If you look around you might even find someone among your friends and acquaintances or someone living in your area who can do it. But there are also internet services that offer transcriptions like CastingWords. This is probably the most costly option in the long run, but also potentially the one with the highest quality output.

Pros

  • High quality / High accuracy (almost independant of you show's format)
  • Very time efficient

Cons

  • (Very) costly

Let's do this

So, now that you know the whys and hows of podcast transcription we'd like to hear your opinion on the topic. Do you already offer transcriptions? If not, why? If yes, how do you do it? If Podigee would offer to transcribe your episodes for you with the click of a button, would you use it? Let us know your thoughts.

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