How to Curate Content for Transcriptions


Crowdscriber allows you to share the workload of transcribing whether you are making subtitles for your videos or show notes for your podcasts. This post will show you how to curate content for your transcriptions from start to finish.


A good tutorial to read before this one, if you haven't already, is the one on the General Layout. There you will learn where everything is within the Crowdscriber app. 

Curate Content for Transcriptions

Transcribing on Laptop

What do we mean by curate content for transcriptions? Basically, being the content curator, you manage the transcription process of the video or podcast you want to create subtitles or show notes for.

Crowdscriber allows you to share the workload of transcribing with others. As the content curator you manage all the subtitles that come in from others and approve them. 

This process always gives you complete transparency for your transcriptions. You see all the transcribed chunks and approve them before they get published. 

In a nutshell being a content curator involves:

  • Choosing the content
  • Generating a link
  • Distributing the link
  • Reviewing and approving chunks
  • Publishing the transcription

It's a lot simpler than it looks. Once you understand the whole process, you'll be flying through transcriptions. So grab your cape, and let's break down the steps.

The Crowdscriber Advantage - Chunks

Crowdscriber breaking video into Chunks

If you aren't familiar yet, Crowdscriber is unique in how it allows you to complete transcriptions. Very different from say, YouTube's Community Captions

Crowdscriber breaks your video or MP3 into chunks. Each chunk is around two minutes. Once you select the video or audio you want to transcribe, we generate a link for you to distribute to anyone you like. 

Chunk distribution

Crowdscriber Chunk Distribution

People can then claim a chunk, and transcribe that two minute portion. They have 12 hours to complete transcribing that chunk.

Once they complete it, they can grab another chunk, and so it goes until the entire piece of content is completed. 

You can see how that can really speed up transcription time by using the power of the crowd.

As these chunks get submitted, you, the content curator, goes through and approves them. Once all the chunks are completed and approved, you can publish the subtitles or transcripts. You can even transcribe other people's content. 

Here, we'll show you how.

Linking Your YouTube Account

This is an important first step if you are planning on adding captions to your YouTube videos  that are on your YouTube channel. Link your YouTube account under your Crowdscriber Profile.

Link YouTube Account

When you link your YouTube account and Allow Updates, it allows Crowdscriber and YouTube to talk. We can now grab the YouTube generated auto-captions if they're enabled within YouTube. Then anyone transcribing a chunk can choose whether or not they would like to start with the auto-captions. 

Linking your YouTube account gives you a few advantages. First, it allows you to publish completed subtitles directly to YouTube with the click of a button.

Second, all your YouTube videos will be accessible from within Crowdscriber to select for transcription. 

Last, it allows you (and your transcribers) to use YouTube generated auto-captions if you choose. 

Generating Your Link

This is where the transcription process starts. Generating a link is super easy. Let's first talk about where to select your videos or MP3s from and some important things to do before you generate your link. 

First click on the Content section on the left side. From here you will see three tabs:

  • Active
  • My YouTube
  • Imported Content

In order to start the transcription process, you will want to go to either My YouTube or Imported Content

My YouTube

If you want to add captions to your YouTube videos, under My YouTube, you will find all your videos from your YouTube Channel here (if you linked your account). 

Adding Subtitles to YouTube videos

You'll see the status of all your videos and whether they have completed transcriptions.

Hover over the video you want to transcribe and click Transcribe. If you are transcribing the video in English, you will see an extra paid option

Imported Content

Imported Content is a little different. It gives you the ability to import YouTube videos by the URL, which comes in handy for transcribing other people's YouTube content.

Or, if you have an audio file like a podcast, you can import the MP3 by URL or upload the file directly.

Add Subtitles to YouTube Video

To get started:

  1. Click the Import Content button
  2. Choose your import format, either YouTube or MP3
  3. Paste in the URL or upload the MP3

Now that you have content in your Imported Content section, hover over the video or audio file you want to transcribe and click Transcribe. 


Before You Generate Your Transcription Link

So you've decided to take on the transcribing process yourself, awesome! Creating the sharable link is simple, but there are a couple important things to consider before generating your link. 



More than likely your transcription will start in English, but it doesn't have to. At the top of the box is a dropdown where you can choose any language you would like the transcription to be in.

If you already have English completed you can transcribe your content into other languages. Maybe you speak another language or some of your fans do. Just make sure to it is set appropriately. 



This option is only available for English and only if the YouTube channel has turned them on. You can choose not to make them available with the blue tick box. Also, if it states they aren’t available, it means you may have to go into your YouTube channel to allow auto-captions.

YouTube's Auto-Captions Available
YouTube's auto-captions not available



This could be the most important part to complete if you plan on distributing your link to others. This is where you would add any important notes for the transcribers.

Things to include in here would be the number of speakers, proper spelling of their names, technical words, or acronyms and anything you think might be difficult for someone to decipher while listening. 

Some examples:

A name like Cíaran and Kieran, both are pronounced the same.

With acronyms, letters often sound the same, like D's, P's, B's. 

Once you've checked that you have the right language and added your comments you can click the Generate Transcription Link button. That's it!

Now let's talk about what you can do with that link, now that you have it. 

Link Options

Generated Transcription Link

You've generated your link. You'll see the box above and have three options available to you. 

  1. Create another link for another language
  2. Copy the link (to distribute)
  3. Assign yourself a chunk (to start transcribing yourself)

Transcribe in Another Language

If you have people available to help you translate into other languages, you can generate another link by clicking the Transcribe in another language button. 

Choose the language from the dropdown and follow the same steps as before. Unfortunately, you will not have access to auto-captions as they are only available for English at this time. 

Copy the Link

This link is unique to the content and to the language you want to transcribe into. You can click the Copy button to the right of the link, or highlight the link and copy with: Ctrl+C (PC), Cmd⌘+C (Mac). 

Assign Me a Chunk

Just like it says, you can assign yourself a chunk to transcribe. This allows you to be part of the process and get the transcription done quicker.

Once you've assigned yourself a chunk, it will automatically open the Crowdscriber subtitle editor. You also will receive an email with a link to your chunk. 

If you don't want to start transcribing right away, you can always get back to the link in the Assigned section, or click the link in your email. Just pay attention to the expiration time. You have 12 hours to complete a two-minute chunk. 

Assigned Videos in Crowdscriber

Finding Your Generated Links

Once you've generated the links, where can you find them to send out again? Just head to Content » Active and there you will find all your videos that are still actively being transcribed.

Finding Your Generated Links

Make sure to check the language first, then hover over the video and click Share Link. A window will open up with the same options as before of copying the link or assigning yourself a chunk

Distributing Links for Transcription

Once you have the link copied, you can share it wherever you have your crowd willing to help you transcribe. This will speed up your transcription process. You can also ask your followers what other languages they can translate into; you may be surprised.

Distributing Chunks

This is a great way to engage with your fans and make them part of what you do. Acknowledge them for helping transcribe. Give them a shout out, put their name in lights, anything! A little love goes a long way. 

Here are some places you can share the links. 

  • Social media - Facebook, Twitter, etc.
  • YouTube - Put it in the comments, make a video asking for help.  
  • Forums - Discord, Reddit, etc.
  • Your email list - Reach out through your list.
  •  Website - Create a page on your website with links.

Checking Progress of Transcriptions

As your team is transcribing, you can check the progress under the Active tab. Select the video you want and click the Review button. It will open the Transcription Review page. This is where you will curate the content for your transcriptions.

Transcription Review

Chunk List

On the right you can see the whole piece of content broken into two-minute chunks. Chunks will either be:

  • Approved
  • Submitted
  • In progress
  • Unassigned

As people claim chunks they will go from Unassigned to In Progress.

Transcribers have 12 hours to complete a chunk. If it is not completed in that time, it will go back to the pool and change back to Unassigned

Once transcribers have Submitted their completed chunk, it will highlight blue. 

Once the chunk is Approved by you, it will then turn green.

Crowdscriber Chunks

Editing Submitted Chunks

Select a submitted chunk on the right from the Chunk List by clicking on it, which will seek the player and subtitles list to that chunk. From here you can play the video or audio for the chosen chunk and view the subtitles.

You may want to edit parts of the transcriptions. Maybe a name was spelled incorrectly or the timing just needs a tweak.

You have the ability to edit the subtitles here. In the timeline you can edit, split, merge, adjust timings, add and delete subtitles just like in the normal subtitle editor. 

Approving Chunks

Approving Chunks

Approving chunks is what allows you complete control over your transcriptions. Once you have reviewed the chunk and you are satisfied just click the checkmark to approve it. 

If you are not satisfied with the transcription, you can either edit or reject it. If rejected, it goes back into the pool of chunks and someone else can claim and transcribe it.  

Publishing Completed Transcriptions

Once you have reviewed and approved all the chunks of your video or audio, the Publish button now becomes active. What happens when you click the Publish button depends on whether the content is a YouTube video (and whether it's your content) or MP3 audio.

Publishing Your Own Transcriptions

Add Captions to YouTube Videos

When it is your own content, you will see these two buttons after you click publish. If your YouTube account is linked, then you can click the Upload to YouTube button and it will upload instantly to YouTube. That simple!

If you transcribed an MP3 like a podcast, or you want to upload the video subtitles elsewhere, then you can download the subtitles/transcription as one of the following files. 

  • .SRT
  • .VTT
  • Text file

You can now use that file to create show notes for a podcast or hardcode the subtitles onto the video using your video editing software of choice. 

Publishing Other People's Transcriptions

If you have chosen to transcribe someone else's content, you won't be able to "publish" their subtitles or show notes. Well, not directly to YouTube like with your own content. 

You still click the Publish button in the Transcription Review section, and you will see the language the transcription is in at the top, along with three options.

  • Download as
  • Publisher claim link
  • View link
Publishing Other's Content

Download As

This is like with your own content. You can download an .SRT, .VTT or text file.

Publisher Claim Link

This is a super cool feature for YouTube videos. If you are a fan of someone, and have decided to help them out by subtitling their video, you can copy and send the provided link.

The link takes them to a page displaying their video along with your awesome subtitling work. Here they can review the work you’ve done, and choose to claim the subtitles in order to include them with their video on YouTube. The best part? It costs them nothing!

Publisher Claiming Chunk

View Link

The View Link option allows you to send it to others to view the transcription even if they don't have a Crowdscriber account. It opens up a player so they can view the video or listen and read the transcript of the MP3.

When would you use this? 

You might ask someone to double check your translation/transcription. Often a second set of eyes is very valuable.

Maybe you just want to share the content with someone that is deaf or hard of hearing. Either way it's a great option to have. 

View Link for Others


Being the content curator for transcriptions is actually quite simple. The most important thing is make sure you are getting exactly what you want. Pay attention to the language, and don't forget about the comments. 

Remember, adding comments for your transcribers can really improve the quality and speed of the transcription process. 

Style Guide for Subtitles EBook

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About the author 


Oliver has been a content creator and market researcher with a passion for helping people understand and learn through his writing.

He also writes for his own travel site Ačiū. He lives in Canada and was raised in a German household. Being bilingual has given him the opportunity to gain valuable experience in transcribing and translating videos and podcasts.

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