Thursday, 5 September 2019

Captioning/Transcripts for your podcasts.

If you care nothing about accessibility and take only one thing from this episode, please let it be that shitty transcripts will not help your website’s SEO. 

Transcripts of podcast episodes are an accessibility feature, not an SEO benefit. Captioning is added to the audio (and video) elements of your digital content so that people can consume those elements with their eyes instead of (or in some cases in addition to) their ears. But do I mean a literal, 100% accurate transcription? Well… that depends. My processes is (or has been since June) to taking this 10-minute audio monologue and turning it into a (in this case) 1,323 word written representation of the topic. 

Why? Because it reads better than a literal word-for-word transcript, which you can read here. So that’s fine (I think?) for a short show like this. But longer shows? Not so much, so I’m changing the advice I give to all of my clients. While it’s still important to create a well-crafted “landing page” for each episode, complete with charts, graphs, and other visual components to really make a piece of worthy digital content, that’s not enough. That's not sufficient for servicing the needs of the hearing impaired. In most cases, the audio of your episode and the contents of this new landing page, another digital asset, are vastly different. If that’s the case for you, then you need to include a transcript of the actual audio episode. 

Yes, that means more work for you. Sorry? Tomorrow I’m going to get into some technologies and tools to help you make your audio content more accessible. Speaking of accessibility, The purpose of this show is to make podcasting better, not just easier.

ATR:  Great, I think your grammar is atrocious but...

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