Defining the Film and TV Transcription Process

A good transcript can be used as the basis for different kinds of materials like captioning, subtitling and web extras i.e. out takes or interview transcripts. Trying to transcribe your own work usually seems harder than it appears. It becomes more complex when things like IDs, TC, music cues and shot descriptions are added.

Raw footage transcription

Raw footage transcription is very popular when it comes to interview footage regardless of whether it is audio or video when you want to find out the person who said what, where and when.

There are very many editors who do not need full verbatim of the raw footage, but it is better to have cuttings and pasting to make a full transcript more easily. At a later date, you might also want to use the rough transcription to come up with a list of the full dialogue.

Raw footage transcription hints:

  • Allow ample time for listening and tying when you decide to do the transcription job on your own. This might be more that you think is needed.
  • Pick the right type of software that will be used for the job. I would recommend inqscribe. It is not advisable to start using voice recognition as it needs too much proofing and it could delay the typing.
  • A logging application can be used for entering the raw footage. This could be something like PilotWare. Make sure you pay attention to detail so that it is used in the right way so that you do not have any complications.

There are numerous professionals companies that can help you with the transcription process especially when you are dealing with a lot of hours at a fee of course.

Transcription for distribution and post production

At the release and post production stage, you may be asked to produce details of the shots or the scripts that was used to accompany the project when it goes in for distribution. The broadcasters and the distributors usually have specific ideas of the formats that are needed. This can either be simple or complex.

A dialogue list should have word accurate speaker ID’s and dialogue. There are also some that come with time codes. The produced script should be a reflection of the final program. This normally includes scene breakdowns, act breaks, continuity and descriptions. They also have timing for the acts and scenes. You can also get custom scripts when looking for something that suits your taste. More on television transcription

Jessica Miller, Marketing Head in Transcriptionwave, General Transcription Services Company in the US.

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