How can participants view the captions?
1. Streamtext URL Captions can be viewed directly through a streaming URL and streaming program called StreamText. A StreamText link is sent out to organizers before each event. The link will only become active once the captioner is logged in. This is a demo link of pre-scripted text: Dual language demo https://www.streamtext.net/player?event=abcaptioningdemo The streaming text can be viewed on any device with an internet connection, including a Smartphone. Viewers can change the colour, background, font, etc., to their own preferences. To view French, click on the Languages tab and choose French from the drop-down list. There is no limit to the number of people that can view this URL. We will provide the URL to the client, and they can distribute the link to their event participants. There is no program to download. Participants will just click on the URL.
2. Embedded Captions Platforms such as Zoom, YouTube, and Webex allow for manual third-party captioning to be embedded into their interface. Zoom does have a built-in delay before the captions will display, whereas with StreamText only, there is no delay in caption output. Please note that Zoom, YouTube, Webex, etc., only allow one language to be embedded into their platform at one time. There are several workarounds to this restriction, and depending on your event, we can discuss those options if you have professional AV technicians involved in your event. The StreamText URL can be embedded into websites. Please contact us for instructions on how to embed into websites.
Please Note: At this time we do not embed into MS Teams due to the technique the program uses to output captions and due to the delay. For events on MS Teams, we recommend using only the Streamtext URL to provide captions to the attendees. Please inquire if you have further questions on embedding.
How do the captioners embed their captions into virtual platforms?
The virtual meeting host can send the captioner the Zoom API token or the YouTube Caption URL, or the captioner can retrieve the Caption URL from the Zoom platform if they are assigned as the host or third-party captioner. The host will need to assign the captioner has a third-party captioner. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are having difficulties with setting up your Zoom account and settings. Follow the instructions here: https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/207279736-Managing-manual-captioning
What is StreamCast?
This app allows the client to move the captions streaming through StreamText to anywhere on their monitor screen so that the text doesn’t block important information, such as on a PowerPoint slide. Once the software is downloaded, the event name from the StreamText URL is inserted into StreamCast. If the captions are live, they will appear automatically. The background can be made transparent so that the picture “underneath” the words will still show through. StreamCast is a great option for on-site captions displayed on a projector screen. The captions can be placed anywhere on the screen as to not cover the presentation. StreamCast Download: https://streamtext.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/209995746-StreamCast-instructions-and-overview
What is the difference between a French steno captioner and the StreamText digital French translation?
A French steno captioner is a live, human captioner trained to write steno and caption on a French steno machine. While this captioning is the best captioning and the preferred method, depending on the day and time of day, it is sometimes very difficult to secure a French steno captioner. So, an alternate “Plan B” is to use digital French translation. This digital technology is NOT voice-to-text translation (that is inaccurate, unreadable, and incomprehensible). This digital software works in conjunction with the streaming software that we use called StreamText. It waits until the English steno captioner captions a sentence, and it then takes the subject, verb, object, gender, syntax, etc., from the English sentence created by the English steno captioner and translates that English sentence into the equivalent French sentence/captioned text. So, while live remote captioning is output word-by-word, the digital French translation is output sentence-by-sentence, so there might be a slight delay if the English sentence is very long. English steno captioners can only write spoken English. If no language translators are involved in the event and French is spoken, the English steno captioner will insert [Speaking French] and of course there will be no corresponding French translation except [Parler français]. If your event is solely in French, then a French captioner will need to be hired. If you are using simultaneous translation services, then it would be appropriate to book both a live English captioner and French captioner, or alternatively, one captioner can be booked and the digital translation software may be used to caption the other language. We frequently use the translation technology for events that require bilingual captioning, and many clients have advised us how accurate it is and it is a great alternative to a live French captioner when they are unavailable.
How do captioners receive audio for an event remotely?
Captioners can be provided with the Zoom/MS Teams event URL, an accompanying phone line, or a teleconference line. If language translators are involved, each English and French captioner will need to be provided with audio lines of their respective languages.
How can you help ensure everything said is included by your captioner?
Due to the nature of captioning, sometimes the captionist may be a few words behind the speaker. It is helpful to be aware of this delay. When more than one person speaks at a time, the captioner must choose which voice to write. In addition, when words are inaudible or spoken too fast, some of the text may not be taken down, and therefore, not displayed. If you are a speaker, it helps if you speak loudly, clearly and one at a time. It would be very helpful to give the captionist spellings of unusual words, esoteric vocabulary or names before the presentation so they may be entered into the dictionary and translated accurately when spoken. Soft voices and strong accents are difficult to caption, and more frequent breaks would be appropriate.
Why are event start and end times important, and what is the login time?
To ensure scheduling, providing start and end times for your event is very important. If you anticipate your event to go over time, please notify us. Our captioners are very busy and may not be able to continue captioning if your event goes overtime. It is important to book enough time to ensure captioning to the end of your event. The login time allows the captioner to login, connect to the meeting, whether it’s via phone, Zoom, etc. Our default login time is 30 minutes before the start time of the event. This allows the captioner to troubleshoot if issues arise, contact the organizers, and most importantly ensure all captions are being delivered.
Who should be provided as the main contact?
Captioners will login 30 minutes prior to the start of the event to ensure they have an audio source, captions are being delivered, etc. If any issues arise before or during the event, they require a contact who is in the meeting who will be able to assist immediately. This may be an AV technician or the person in charge of the event.
What is a rough edit file?
A rough edit file is provided for internal purposes only. We provide CART to facilitate realtime access to oral and aural communication. The quality of the rough edit file may be affected by poor audio, digital technical difficulties, inaudible, indiscernible, or overlapping conversation, The rough edit text files are in rough draft format and are not meant to be a verbatim record of the event and may contain missing, misspelled, or paraphrased words and may also contain environmental sounds, visual cues, and parentheticals. The rough draft file is not certified as verbatim and cannot be cited, copied, posted on the internet in its present form, distributed, shared, or sold in any way. The file is lightly scanned for untranslates, mistranslates, and spell checked.