News and Notes related to Digital Media Transcription, Analysis, and Captioning.
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  • Vimeo: From Transcript to Subtitles

    Posted on June 4th, 2015 Alex No comments

    Interested in sharing your subtitles with others? Consider uploading to Vimeo. Although YouTube is the more popular option, Vimeo entices users with their clean, professional, and ad-free interface. Vimeo also offers password protected videos, which will give you more privacy control compared to YouTube.

    Whether you choose Vimeo or YouTube, uploading subtitles is a cinch. Continue reading for more on Vimeo. See our Knowledge Base article “How do I upload subtitles to YouTube?” for our YouTube guide.

    Note that this article details how to upload captions that you can toggle on and off within Vimeo’s interface. To permanently write your subtitles into the video image, head over to this support article.

    Prepare Your InqScribe Transcript

    First, open up your InqScribe document and make sure your transcript and timecodes are in order. Once everything looks good, we’re going to export as a WebVTT file. This will require InqScribe version 2.2.3 or newer. Vimeo also supports the SRT and SCC format, but they recommend using WebVTT when possible

    Select “File > Export > WebVTT…”, name your file and choose a save location. Make a note of this location because we’ll need to access it again in a moment.

    Upload to Vimeo

    Before jumping into the directions below, first make sure to upload your video to Vimeo. You’ll need to log in or create an account, then select the “Upload” button at the top right of Vimeo’s site. It should be fairly self-explanatory, but if you need help, Vimeo has some tips here.

    Add Your Caption or Subtitle File

    Once you have your video uploaded, here’s how to upload your caption or subtitle file:

    1. Log in to Vimeo and navigate to the “My Videos” section of the topbar menu.
    2. Select your video and click on “Settings.”
    3. In the Video Settings menu, click “Advanced”. You should see the screen pictured below.
    4. Under “Add Captions & Subtitles”, select “Choose file”. Locate your subtitle/caption file and click Open.
    5. Your file should appear below in the Enable Captions & Subtitles section. Make sure to check “Status: ON” and select the language and file type.
    6. Select “Save Changes” at the bottom of the page and your video will equip with captions.

    Vimeo Subtitle File Upload

    That’s all! To watch your video with the new captions, just click the “CC” icon in the Vimeo player.

    If you have any comments or questions about InqScribe’s subtitle support, don’t hesitate to send an email to support@inqscribe.com.

  • Hard Coding Your Subtitles: Actually Not Hard

    Posted on April 1st, 2015 Alex No comments

    There are quite a few ways to creates subtitles in InqScribe (check out a list of them here). Using the built-in “Save Subtitled QuickTime Movie” option is probably the quickest and easiest, but if you or your colleagues don’t have access to QuickTime 7, sharing the exported video file can be a problem. If you’d like to ensure your subtitled movie plays the same across all devices, hard coding your subtitles may be the answer for you.

    “Hard coding” or “burning-in” subtitles means taking the subtitle track and writing it into the video itself. If a video file has burned-in subtitles, it ensures the video will look the same no matter how it’s played. Note that you won’t be able to toggle subtitles on or off; if they’re burned-in, they’re there for good. To be clear, you cannot use InqScribe to burn-in subtitles. You can, however, export your InqScribe transcript to a Subrip .srt file and use free online tools to create a video file with hard coded subtitles. In this post, I’ll explain how to use InqScribe with VidCoder and Submerge.

    First, you’ll need to create and prepare your InqScribe transcript. Once it’s ready, export as a Subrip .srt file by selecting “File > Export > Subrip Format…” Note the save location of the file- you’ll need to access it soon. Now that you have a subtitle file, it’s time to burn it into a copy of your source video. To do this, we’ll use the free VidCoder (Windows-only) and Submerge (Mac-only).

    VidCoder (Windows-only)

    VidCoder is a free, open source software that uses Handbrake as it’s encoding engine. Designed for DVD/Blu-Ray and video encoding, VidCoder also allows you to hard code your subtitles. Here’s how:

    1. Download VidCoder from their CodePlex website: https://vidcoder.codeplex.com.
    2. Install VidCoder by opening the executable file. It should be called something like “VidCoder-1.5.3.1-x64.exe.”
    3. Launch VidCoder. From the startup menu, select “Video File…” Locate your original source video and select “Open.” Note that you’ll want to load the source video, NOT a subtitled QuickTime movie created in InqScribe.
    4. Once the video loads into VidCoder, you’ll have a few more options. Under the “Subtitles” heading, select “Edit…” Then, select “Import .srt File” Locate your .srt file and click “Open.”
    5. You’ll see your subtitle file loaded into “External subtitles.” Make sure to check “Burn in” and then click “OK.”
    6. Now that you have your video and subtitle file loaded into VidCoder, select “Encode” in the bottom right of the menu. Once it’s finished, you should see the new encoded video file appear in your specified folder.

    Submerge (Mac-only)

    Submerge is a tool designed specifically for hard coding subtitles on Mac. You’ll find it comes with more options to adjust subtitle position and appearance than freeware like VidCoder, although Submerge has a price tag of $19. Fortunately, Submerge offers a free timed demo for new users to try out.

    Note that we are in no way affiliated with Submerge or its creator, but are simply offering it as a possible subtitle burn-in solution to InqScribe users.

    You can find more information about Submerge, including directions on how to get started at their website: http://www.bitfield.se/submerge.

    Do you use a different tool to hard code subtitles? If you have any recommendations, we’d love to hear from you. Likewise, if you have any questions about creating subtitles with InqScribe, just shoot us an email at support@inqscribe.

  • How to Add Captions to Facebook Videos

    Posted on October 8th, 2014 Alex No comments

    As you may or may not have noticed, Facebook has been making some improvements to its video feature. Part of this campaign includes newly added support for caption/subtitle display. Now, I know what you’re thinking: “Can I use InqScribe to add subtitles to my Facebook video?” The answer: yes, yes you can.

    Facebook video screenshot

    Here's what your subtitles will look like in Facebook

    The following process entails creating your transcript, exporting it to the Facebook-compatible Subrip .srt format, and finally uploading your video along with the .srt file to Facebook. Note that, at this time of writing (October 2014), adding captions is only available in the US for the English language, and it won’t work on mobile or tablet. This is subject to change as Facebook continues to develop their video features. In the likely event that Facebook alters their subtitling process, we’ll keep these instructions updated in our Knowledge Base here.

    Facebook is a little picky when it comes to the format of the Subrip .srt captions, so pay special attention your filename and line endings (see steps 3 and 4). With that in mind, here’s how to add in your captions:

    1. Open up InqScribe and prepare your transcript with text and timecodes.
    2. Once its ready, export your transcript as a Subrip .srt file by selecting “File > Export > Subrip Format.”
    3. Select a name for your file and specify its save location with the “Choose…” button. Here’s the important part: Facebook requires you to place “.en_US” at the end of your filename. So, your file will end up looking something like “Example.en_US.srt.”
    4. Now, in the Export Settings menu, click “Advanced” to bring up the Advanced Options. Set Line Endings to “Windows (CR/LF)” and click OK. Don’t forget this step! In our testing, Facebook will only accept Windows or Unix line endings.

      line endings screen shot

      Make sure to set Line Endings to "Windows (CR/LF)"

    5. Press OK and your Subrip .srt subtitle file will be saved in the location of your choosing.
    6. Now, login to Facebook and upload your video (instructions from Facebook here).
    7. Once you have located your video, select “Post” and the video will begin uploading. Then, select “Edit This Video.” You’ll be taken to the menu pictured below where you can add in your subtitle file.facebook video upload screenshot
    8. Under the Captions section, select “Choose File” and locate your Subrip .srt subtitle file.
    9. Select “Save” and the subtitles will be added to your video!
    10. To display subtitles, press the “CC” button at the bottom of the video player on playback.

    If you didn’t name the .srt file correctly, you’ll see the message “You uploaded a .SRT file with an incorrect filename. Please use this format: filename.en_US.srt”

    If you don’t see any subtitles after uploading your .srt file and clicking the “CC” button on the video player, then you might not have selected the correct line endings in step 4.

    You can also add subtitles to a video you’ve already uploaded. To do so, select the video and expand it. Click “Options > Edit This Video” at the bottom of the video player and refer to steps 7-9.

    Questions? Comments? Contact us at support@inqscribe.com.

  • Play a Subtitled Movie with Windows Media Player

    Posted on September 22nd, 2014 Alex No comments

    You can easily create Subtitled QuickTime Movies directly in InqScribe, and in general we recommend using QuickTime with InqScribe. However, there is another method to play a subtitled movie by combining your video with an exported subtitle track in Windows Media Player. How you ask? Windows Media Player doesn’t natively support subtitle importation, so we’ll be using the DirectVobSub add-on.

    Before proceeding, note that you’ll need to download and install the freeware DirectVobSub media codec, hosted by free-codecs here: http://www.free-codecs.com/DirectVobSub_download.htm. DirectVobSub is an unofficial add-on that allows Windows Media Player to read external subtitles files such as subrip .srt, which you can create through InqScribe. Be aware that, depending on your version of Windows, adding subtitles with DirectVobSub is limited to .avi files (see below for more info).

    This option isn’t for everyone, and we’d like to point out that DirectVobSub is a third-party, unofficial add-on. We don’t support it, and your mileage may vary. That said, it is a quick and easy way to display subtitles without installing an additional media player.

    Here’s what to do:

    1. Prepare your transcript in InqScribe
    2. Export your transcript as a Subrip .srt file by selecting “File > Export > Subrip Format…”
    3. You’ll see the Export Settings menu. In the Target section, you’ll have the option to name your .srt file. It is important to give this .srt file the same title as the video you’re subtitling. For example, if your video is titled “My Subtitled Movie_123.avi” you should name your exported .srt file “My Subtitled Movie_123.srt” It is also important to save your .srt file in the same folder as the video you’re subtitling. You can specify the file’s location with the “Choose…” button in the same Export Settings menu. So, if your video file is located in a folder called “My Favorite Videos” make sure to save the .srt file in the same place.
    4. Download the DirectVobSub media codec, hosted for free by free-codecs here: http://www.free-codecs.com/DirectVobSub_download.htm
    5. Install DirectVobSub by double clicking on the .exe file you downloaded. It should be called something like: “VSFilter_2.41.322.exe”
    6. Once it’s finished installing, open up the video file you wish to subtitle in Windows Media Player. Bring up the menu by pressing the “Alt” key, and select “Play > Lyrics, captions, and subtitles > On if available”
    7. Your video will now display the subtitles you created in InqScribe!

    Note that there are a few restrictions to using DirectVobSub and Windows Media Player for subtitle display:

    • Although this method will work with .avi video files, it won’t work with the common mp4 file type on Windows 7 and up. This is because DirectVobSub relies on DirectShow to display subtitles, but later versions of Windows use Media Foundation, rather than DirectShow, to decode mp4 files. On Windows Vista and lower, however, mp4 files are decoded with DirectShow. So, on earlier versions of Windows you should be able to use DirectVobSub to add in your subtitle track to mp4 files.
    • Be aware that you won’t have any control over the appearance of your subtitles. They will appear “flush with bottom” (near the bottom of the screen), centered, and white with black outlines and drop shadow. In other words, they will look close to how it would look in a film.

    Do you have experience using DirectVobSub with other file types? Do you use an entirely different method to add subtitles to video with Windows Media Player? Let us know! Contact us at support@inqscribe.com.