Best Practices for Implementing Video Captioning
TOLE KHESIN: All right, great. So thanks, everyone, for joining us. This session is titled “Best Practices for Implementing Video Captioning.” My name is Tole Khesin with 3Play Media.
I’m also joined by Haris Gunadi from Portland Community College. Haris has worked in higher education accessibility for the last 10 years, first at Oregon State University and then in Portland Community College. In his current role as alternative media specialist, he analyzes course media for accessibility compliance and researches new processes and technologies. So with that, I will hand things off to Haris Gunadi from Portland Community College.
HARIS GUNADI: So I can tell a little bit about Portland Community College. We have approximately 90,000 students in entire years taking credit and non-credit courses. We have four campuses, and we also have online learning like e-Campus.
Between 2013 and spring 2014, we have 1,476 students requesting accommodations. 69 students requested communication access like interpreting, transcribing, captioned media for services in 387 classes. And we have 46 students that actually only want captioned media in 287 classes.
So my staff– so our department have couple staffs. First one, FTE for me, program manager for on-campus classes. And we have 0.5 FTE assistant, my assistant, dedicated to video captionings, basically.
Her job is to contact the instructor when they submit their request to our system and also try to find copyrights or get transcripts somewhere if it’s already available. A lot of times, OPB, like Oregon Public Broadcasting, they have captions already. All we need to do is ask.
0.3 FTE approximately program assistant dedicated to online learning. So Online Learning Campus actually have a lot of videos that they produce in-house that sometimes needs to be captioned when students requested it. And I also have about two FTE reserve shared support for other alt media, like E-Text and Braille. And then we have one FTE e-Campus, I mean online campus, accessibility specialist that helps instructor to make their video captionings or help the instructor to get the video captions.
Our numbers. Basically, we have about total 120 hours worth of video that we captioned last year. Most of them are through DVDs.
Surprise, but I’m pretty surprised with it, actually, because there are still a lot of DVD that’s not captioned. We tried to contact the publishers a lot of times, and they still tell us they don’t have it, because they’re independent film production. They do not have funding to do this.
We also have a lot of online content that we have to caption. So our partner and e-Campus actually starting a program where the instructor needs to make sure, moving forward, all their content’s accessible, including putting in captions. And there are still a couple VHS, like five of them. And there’s Camtasia, other YouTube videos. Approximately there’s 120 hours.
So our dream is instructors submit the list of video requests with due dates and sources, which never happened. Instructor contacted our department in advance to get video captions. Never happens. In the past, OK, in the past. Sorry, all of this, of course, I said before.
Our instructor have syllabus ready by the first day of the class, a lot of times. 50% of instructor actually approximately do not know what videos that will be shown to the class. Boy.
Common misconceptions. Every time I talk to the instructor, it’s giving me more work. Too much more steps I have to complete. I’m too busy. I don’t have enough time, and I have a lot of students in my courses.
And I give them a call. So after I talk to them, everything’s good. So I have told them, we can handle last minute requests. But please, please, please, please at least give us 24 hours for short video, OK. And sometimes, instructor feels like it’s so difficult for them to show captions, because that’s a lot of button to figure out, to press. Like, for example, when you have DVDs, videos, they are not sure how to turn on, on the media console.
From get go, I understand it’s really important to get the trust from the instructor. The process should be simple. In some cases, the only thing that they have to do is send us a list of video. Or better yet, I ask them to just send me the PowerPoint. If they’re embedded through PowerPoint, just send me the PowerPoint.
And I guarantee them, within one business day, they’re going to get their PowerPoint back with all the videos links embedded back to the PowerPoint. And then within three business days, magic happen at 3Play, and then we got the whole video captions. We assure the instructor last minute video can be done. Typically, less than 10 minutes. And really rare, we have 60 minutes video for last minute videos.
Disability Services handle short and last minute videos in-house, house, with turn around about three to five minutes for each one minute of the videos. We encourage instructor, unless just happened like a minute ago, we like instructor to notify us within 24 hours.
So result is, after one year, instructor realize, well, that’s pretty easy. There’s nothing more they have to do. We actually got a lot of instructor that contacted us saying, can I get this video captions. So I said, well, OK. We have the resources.
When we have the resources– like, for example, during summer time or middle of the terms and we don’t have a lot of videos– we tell them we’ll try to work on it. It’s not priority, but as long you’re going to use the video next term or for the next year, we’ll help you get it captions. It’s not guaranteed, but we’ll try the best we can.
So the challenges that we have is we have limited staff resources. Turnaround time for a long last minute video can be difficult. And streamline process from getting video to sending instructor link can be, in the past, it’s pretty difficult. You have to make sure it’s captioned first, you embed it, and then send it to the instructor. There’s so many steps in the past that I have to do.
So by choosing the third party actually help us, a couple things. Able to put more resources to contact the instructor. Because that’s the most important things for us is to actually get the instructor to get us the video list as soon as possible.
We have the option to do in-house still if we still want to do it for a last minute video or short videos. And then also, we also get the ability to show player with the interactive transcript, which I thought is pretty useful. That’s one of the reasons why I choose 3Play.
Our workflow is student submits captioning video requests through our online services, through our online system. Instructor are contacted before the term start. And I actually give you a flowchart here that you can follow.
Accessibility aides, my aides, will find whether a video are already captioned or if any transcript is available online anywhere. If it’s captioned already, our aide will provide an instruction on how to turn on closed captioning media, closed captionings in media console or VLC Players on your computer. If available for purchase, we are going to go ahead and purchase this, because it’s much easier. But we are requiring the department in the future moving forward, they have to purchase caption media instead of just older media. If it’s audio only media, we’ll provide the transcript directly to the students.
So part of our workflow here, how long it takes to get things done. A lot of times, for online media for YouTube, it takes about 10 minutes to 70 minutes depending on the length of the video and how it’s being posted. Sometimes, when we try to get a video from CNN, CNBC, it’s really hard to download the video. But YouTube video, we find it pretty easy. There’s a plug-in that you can use to download the videos.
Same thing with VHS. If it’s 60 minutes video, it takes approximately 70 minutes to record it. And same thing with DVDs. That’s what we do try to do is try to create a digital copy for all the materials that we have and upload it to Kaltura, our online media storage. It could be any– there are a couple other options out there, but our school use Kaltura.
So once we get the video uploaded, the next thing that we do is we send the instructor a link immediately. The list is a link to your videos. And you can show it in your class when the class is in session. So we do not wait until last minute to provide this link to the instructor.
And we only provide them with one link. And when they go there, the latest video captioning request will be on the top. So when they go to a class, all they have to do is click on that link. And all the video lists that they have requested in the past will show up there.
And we’ll just trust 3Play to get it done. If not, then I’ll give them a call. And then we also remind the instructor, the video link will only be available on limited time basis, because we’ll take them down because of the copyright issue. But if that’s a personal video that they created in the past by themselves, we’ll make sure we give them a space and upload the captions in the more permanent place.
So this is what it looks like. I mean, this is the player that we work with 3Play. We also get players customized by Kaltura. It’s really nice. Kaltura are willing to work with us to make sure the players are keyboard accessible. So leave question and answer. OK.
AUDIENCE: Do you charge each department or professor for each captioned video, or is that eaten up by the budget for your Disability Services Office?
HARIS GUNADI: If you charge them, there is not going to be any requests ever. So we have to eat them. But we all the same encourage them to provide us with– if they’re going to buy new materials, they’re going to create new materials, we try to tell them make the transcript first and then caption your own videos. Well, make the transcript first and then capture the videos that you’re trying to capture, and then give it to us and we’ll time code it for you. Anyone else?
HARIS GUNADI: Yeah.
AUDIENCE: Tell us, where does your budget come from?
HARIS GUNADI: Multiple places. We got it from general funding, I believe. And then we also, there’s a funding from online campus. So we have different pots. When we work with 3Play, there are two different pots that we use.
So it’s like a calling card. Imagine it’s like a calling card. We prepaid a certain amount of money to 3Play. I have my own calling card. My online learning have their own calling cards. And based on the minutes that we use, that’s how it’s being deducted. Yes.
AUDIENCE: So once you caption something, you send a link. And you said it’s only up for a while because of copyright issues. So what happens if a different professor needs to use the same video?
HARIS GUNADI: We have the captions already, so we just re-upload the videos with the closed caption.
AUDIENCE: So you keep that in-house, or is that through 3Play?
HARIS GUNADI: We keep it in-house all the time. And if the video’s still up there, we’ll just send them the same link again.
AUDIENCE: So you have like a– you created a library?
HARIS GUNADI: We have a library that we have a lot of the transcript, we can upload it to our online database.
AUDIENCE: Do you make that available to all professors? And say they pick the video or something for their class to use. Or let’s say they don’t know that they want to use a video, but they can go onto your library and see, oh, this has already been captioned?
HARIS GUNADI: That’s a good idea, actually. I mean, we don’t have that.
AUDIENCE: OK, well [INAUDIBLE] for that.
HARIS GUNADI: That’s a good idea, actually. That’s not a bad thing. I mean we keep a list of them, but it’s not open to the faculty currently. Yes.
AUDIENCE: You mentioned that you’re using Kaltura for your central repository. Who’s managing and supporting that infrastructure for you?
HARIS GUNADI: To tell you the truth, I’m not sure. I believe we pay Kaltura to deal with it. Anyone else? Yes.
AUDIENCE: How do you handle professors’ requests for students who actually use video or class presentations?
HARIS GUNADI: For students?
AUDIENCE: If you have a student in the class who’s going to do a presentation using YouTube videos that needs to be captioned. And the professor contacts you and says, you need the video captioned.
HARIS GUNADI: That’s correct. We depended on the instructor to tell us if there is any other videos that we need to caption for them. And to tell you the truth, it’s not a 100% foolproof system.
We still work with our instructors sometimes. I mean, it’s a small number of the instructors we have to keep reminding them to send us a video. It’s not perfect, but it’s much better than a year ago. Anyone else? Yes.
AUDIENCE: If you have a transcriber in the class providing real time transcription, do you still caption videos for [INAUDIBLE] student?
HARIS GUNADI: Yes. Any other questions? Yes.
AUDIENCE: I’m aware of efforts in Canada, at some universities in Canada, to collect and share captioned videos, share a database, if you will. Are you aware of any efforts in the US?
HARIS GUNADI: I know there’s a– well, I’m not sure about in the US. But what we’re trying to do here, I think we’re trying to get community colleges together, at least in Portland, I mean in Oregon, to share videos if it’s already captioned. But we don’t have the infrastructure yet. But that’s something that we are looking for in the future. Yes.
AUDIENCE: First, you referenced the policy for your campus that all of your materials need to have captioning. How did you establish that? Or who did you work with to establish that as a current policy?
HARIS GUNADI: I don’t think it’s called policy yet. I think it’s guideline currently.
HARIS GUNADI: Yeah. I’m not too sure myself. It’s between my director, usually, and then the deans on the campus. And then online courses. They work together. I’m more of a person that am actually doing the works and trying to get the captions.
But that’s a good question. I think my director is responsible for that, to work with different department on campus and all the deans. Yes.
AUDIENCE: What is the turnaround time for 3Play to get it back to you and for you to post that link?
HARIS GUNADI: The turnaround time step we usually use about three business days. But honestly, when we send it to 3Play, we got it faster, like two business days. You can get it faster like that in one business day. Even the same day. I’m not too sure what is the policy on the same days.
Of course, the faster it is, the faster your money will flow out, so– but yeah. There is a cool– there is a new option that you provided to us. You can get it slower for a cheaper price, which is like good. We love it.
AUDIENCE: Yeah, I had a question. Do you accept C-Print transcriptions?
HARIS GUNADI: No, we have not worked with C-Print transcription before. Yes.
AUDIENCE: What do you use for in-house caption?
HARIS GUNADI: We use, once we get the get the subtitle– I mean, once we get the videos– we use Subtitle Workshop currently. It’s a free one that you can download. It’s really easy to use. I use it with a game pad. I bought a game pad, and you can control what keys to be assigned to what shortcut keys.
It’s like playing a game. It’s pretty easy. I mean, it just– it can be frustrating too at the same time when someone speak really, really fast.
AUDIENCE: Can you repeat the name of that please?
HARIS GUNADI: Yeah, what?
AUDIENCE: What was the name of that again?
HARIS GUNADI: Subtitle Workshop.
AUDIENCE: Can you spell it?
HARIS GUNADI: Subtitle and then Workshop as W-O-R-K-S-H-O-P. It’s free. And unfortunately, it’s not being supported anymore. But it works for us in Windows 7 so far. I haven’t tested in Windows 8, but I’m pretty sure it should work in there, too.
AUDIENCE: Is that a transcript, and you have to do the transcript first?
HARIS GUNADI: We have to do the transcript first. We get the transcript from our transcriber or for short video, a lot of times my aide will actually type, transcribe it in-house. And then she will time it.
I mean, it’s really helpful to have a third party, honestly, because we were able to maintain– we have limited budget, and then we have limited staff that can help us. Our life is much easier now, because we are not too stressed about getting the video captions. Because then I can just blame him to get the video captions. We just need to make sure we get it on time from them. Any other questions?
AUDIENCE: Yes, [INAUDIBLE].
AUDIENCE: [INAUDIBLE] get the transcript to– Do you get the transcript from a service? Do you guys– how do you get the transcript, because that’s the real struggle that I’m having.
HARIS GUNADI: Well, the transcript, like a song, you should be able to get it online. So like Public Broadcasting System, I mean, they should have them captioned already, technically. And with Oregon Public Broadcasting, we actually– our office was really close to each other, about 10 minutes away.
I will give them a call. And they will send me the closed captioned versions in the DVDs. And I’m pretty sure with 3Play, I’m pretty sure you can upload a transcript. And then it’s for, I think for less cost, isn’t it?
TOLE KHESIN: Yeah.
HARIS GUNADI: And then you can get it timed instead of a person in the office. But try Google first. That’s what we do first– Google and then search Amazon if the video is already available in the closed captions version. Any other questions? Thank you.