Time for a fresh discussion of transcripts?

I know, the eternal thorn in our side. A few weeks ago I mentioned I was going to do a deep dive digging into transcription… and it got snowed under other things. I’m starting this new topic so we can do a round of “here’s how I do it” — please chime in with your thoughts on how you generate transcripts.

:thinking: This is a classic example of one of the points of this community existing: Creating publicly readable, useful stuff from what we collectively use and know. :slight_smile:

I use a variety of services…

I’ve sometimes used (although not for over a year now) Rev.com’s human transcription. It comes back as perfect as can be. (Unless it has french parkour terms in it… ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ )

I’m currently getting machine-generated transcripts out of Zencastr.com as part of my regular service. (I’m not on the free plan.) These are pretty good, and I whip through them spending a few minutes delete some “um.” and “uh.” transcript breaks, fixing names and other proper nouns. That’s how the transcripts for #listen come to exist.

I also have a Pro Otter.ai account which lets me upload audio files (in addition to all the ways everyone else uses Otter ;) I use this when I want a transcript of some podcast I just listened to when I want to write posts or whatever. If I record a podcast using Zoom (happens rarely, but it happens) then I’ll send the audio file over to Otter to get a transcript.

I’ve talked about switching to using Amazon’s transcription service. It’s insanely cheap. Like 2-cents/minute cheap. (For the first 250,000 minutes of usage a month. Beyond that, the price goes down.) But I’ve just not had the time to try it out, and Otter.ai and Rev.com when I need a hammer human, do a good-enough job.

Thoughts all?


I like Descript for transcripts. I’ve gotten used to the shortcuts, although there are things in there that are not very intuitive (overdubbing, for one), the transcripts are pretty straightforward.


Like @ChristiCassidy, I get mine from Descript, when I still do an interview format episode (for a not for profit or for the class that I teach).


Yes me 3 on Descript!


After Craig mentioned the Amazon AWS transcription method at a recent meeting I could help check it out.
It seems pretty good. NOT intuitive to use, but not impossible either.
I’d didn’t really assess the quality of the transcript fully because I was kind of surprised I got it to work at all! I’ve never had AWS work for me before so I was expecting it to be impossibly difficult.

I’m using Descript at the moment so I don’t really need a new method, but next time Descript let’s me down - probably with my own Scottish accent - I know I have another option, and I have discovered that Descript allows you to import a transcript to replace theirs, so then I can still use it for edits and caption videos.