SmartCaption™ is an optional TelVue Connect feature that automatically generate timed Closed Caption files for videos: WebVTT for CloudCast VOD and OTT streaming, and 608/708 for broadcast. SmartCaption automatic captioning can be purchased in blocks of 100, 300, 500, 1000, 2000, 4000, 6000, and 9000 hours. Purchased SmartCaption hours can be used directly on HyperCasters linked to your Connect account for HyperCaster offline captioning and live captioning with SmartCaption™ LIVE channel licenses. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for pricing.
To automatically generate closed captions:
- From the Media Tab, select Generate Captions from the actions menu for a given media record. This is also available from the actions menu in the Media Edit page.
- A Captions Generation Options menu will be presented that allows optionally selecting the source language or from Custom Language Models to improve caption accuracy, and whether to use Smart Formatting and Profanity Filtering. Additionally you can select one or more Caption Substitutions to automatically find and replace certain text. Source languages and dialects supported include: English (US), English (UK), Arabic, Portuguese (Brazilian), Chinese (Mandarin), Dutch, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Spanish (Argentinian, Castilian, Chilean, Colombian, Mexican, Peruvian).
- Closed Captions generation can also be a Bulk Action:
- In the Media Library, check off the videos to be captioned
- Select the Bulk Generate Closed Captions action
- Closed Captions can also be generated directly from the Assets Tab in the Media Edit page.
- Click on the Assets Tab and Scroll down to the Closed Caption section at the bottom of the Assets Tab.
- Click the Icon under Actions to begin the process of generating (or regenerating) a closed caption file.Under the Activity tab, you can follow the progress of the caption file creation:
- Extracting the audio
- Speech-to-Text transcription of the audio
- Conversion of the resulting timed text file to the WebVTT format commonly used in VOD streaming.
- The overall process is a little faster than real time
- When completed, the video thumbnail displays a CC icon. Hovering over the icon will show the types of captioning available, such as WebVTT for VOD files and 608 Embedded for Broadcast files.
- Once completed, the Closed Caption file will automatically be attached to any video included in a CloudCast player or OTT app. Additionally, any subsequent Broadcast transcodes will embed the generated captions as 608/708 embedded as long as the “Embed captions in broadcast transcodes” option is enabled. This setting can be managed by an Admin from Administration –> Organization Settings –> Captions. Note that for embedding captions in Broadcast files, the Broadcast transcode must be manually triggered after the caption generation has completed.
- To view the captions, the viewer needs to start the video, and then select the CC option in the CloudCast player.
- The captions are also viewable in the Preview within Connect. Click the CC icon in the preview player control bar to toggle captions on or off.
- The Closed Caption file is available for download from the Assets Tab by clicking the icon under Actions.
- The Closed Caption file can be deleted from the Assets Tab by clicking the icon under Actions.
- To have captions generated automatically for all uploaded media, enable the configuration option “Auto generation captions for all uploaded files”. This setting can be managed by an Admin from Administration –> Organization Settings –> Captions.
Organization Default Caption Settings
Organization-wide defaults for automatic captioning can be set under Administration –> Organization Settings –> Captions, and are as follows:
Caption Workflow Settings
The organization-wide caption workflow settings apply to all automatic caption generation unless overridden by user-specific caption settings.
- Embed captions in broadcast transcodes: If enabled, all broadcast transcodes will embed available uploaded or auto-generated closed captions as a 608 text stream. If no captions are available, transcodes will proceed immediately bypassing caption embedding, unless you also enable the ‘Ensure Broadcast Transcoded Assets Have Embedded Captions’ option below. Note that licensed videos will have embedded captions only if the Syndicating organization embeds them.
- Ensure Broadcast Transcoded Assets Have Embedded Captions: For broadcast transcodes enqueued via auto transcoding rules, delay the transcode until caption generation or upload completes to ensure that the transcoded broadcast asset has an embedded 608 captions track from the generated captions.
- Auto generate captions for all uploaded files: If enabled, all uploaded files will enqueue an auto generate caption job. Be aware that this will consume purchased caption generation minutes.
Defaults For Manual and Automatic Caption Generation
The organization-wide default caption settings apply to all automatic caption generation, and populate the initial options form for manual caption generation unless overridden by user-specific caption settings.
- Use Smart Formatting: If selected, converts dates, times, series of digits and numbers, phone numbers, currency values, and internet addresses into more readable, conventional representations in the final transcript. Also converts certain keyword strings to punctuation symbols.
- Use Profanity Filter: If selected, filters profanity from all output except for keyword results by replacing inappropriate words with a series of asterisks. Uncheck the box to return results with no censoring.
- Default Custom Language Model: Select a custom language model to be used by default on manual and automatic caption generation. These settings can be overridden during manual caption generation but not during automatic caption generation.
- Default Customization Weight: The customization weight tells us how much weight to give to words from the custom language model compared to those from the standard dictionary for the current job. 0.3 is the default and recommended setting. Higher values favor the custom model.
- Caption Substitution Options: Select any caption substitution rules you wish to have automatically applied to all caption generation jobs
Per User Caption Settings
The same Organization Default Caption Settings above can be applied on a per-user basis for user-specific caption workflows. For example, you may have a specific user that requires all related broadcast transcodes to have captioning for broadcast workflows, so the Embed captions in broadcast transcodes and Ensure Broadcast Transcoded Assets Have Embedded Captions options should be selected for that user. Or there may be a specific user for which you want all of their content automatically captioned, or a Custom Language Model that applies to content from a specific contributor.
The per-user settings can be configured under Administration –> Users –> Edit –> Captions. The settings match the default settings described above, and for each one you can choose to Defer to Organization Setting or pick a specific setting for the user.
For HyperCaster integration, the user caption settings for the User account linked to the HyperCaster can be used to automate captioning for files uploaded by the HyperCaster for CloudCast or MediaExchange workflows.
SmartCaption Caption Editor
The accuracy of any closed caption file depends on the clarity of the speech in the video. If necessary, a closed caption file can be improved with manual editing and re-timing.
The optional integrated SmartCaption™ Caption Editor is the easiest way to quickly and professionally edit captions from within your TelVue Connect account. With the SmartCaption Caption Editor feature enabled, the media action menu for media with captions will include an Edit Captions option to edit the primary captions.
All caption tracks including primary and translated tracks can be edited directly from the Media Assets tab by clicking the edit icon.
Editing captions will launch the SmartCaption Caption Editor.
The SmartCaption Caption Editor supports video preview and caption synchronization with frame stepping, scrubbing, scrolling, direct editing, search, find & replace, spell check, keyboard shortcuts, timing adjustments, and more. After editing, click the Publish button in the upper right to save your changes. The revised captions will replace the previous file, and will now play out in CloudCast and be available for Broadcast transcodes.
An open-source caption editing option is CADET, developed by the National Center for Accessible Media at WGBH. Download the CADET app to your computer and then open in a browser. To edit a caption file:
- First, download a preview version of the video from the Assets Tab in TelVue Connect.
- Download the captions file from the Assets Tab in TelVue Connect.
- Upload the preview video and import the captions file to CADET, and these will be displayed side by side.
- You can then edit the text in the individual caption cells.
- You can also re-time the in and out points using some simple keyboard shortcuts, as the preview video plays. Refer to the CADET documentation for details.
- Re-export the revised caption file.
- Re-upload in the Media Edit page in TelVue Connect via the Closed Captioning File – Choose File button. The revised captions will replace the previous file, and will now play out in CloudCast and be available for Broadcast transcodes.
Translate the Captions to Additional Languages
Users can translate the primary captions to over 100 additional languages using the optional SmartCaption Translation service.
Admins can track the usage of their captioning hours at Administration → Reports → Caption Generation Usage Reports.
Usage information includes:
- Caption minutes usage historically, for the current year, and for the current month.
- Total purchased caption minutes.
- Available caption minutes remaining.
- Percent purchased minutes.
Caption Generation usage is also summarized on the Administration → Organization Settings → Usage page.
Admins can also receive automatic email notifications when the available SmartCaption minutes falls below a configurable threshold. The Threshold is set under Administration –> Organization Settings –> Captions:
- Caption Generation Minutes Remaining Notification Threshold: When your organization reaches this many caption generation minutes remaining, email notifications will be sent to all subscribing administrator users.
Admin users can enable or disable receiving the email notification under Administration –> Users –> Edit –> Email Notification.
The SmartCaption Automatic Captioning service can be purchased in blocks of captioning hours. Please contact email@example.com for pricing.