YouTube captions: Now in 10 delicious languages
In the beginning there was English and it was good. Okay, not so much. Honestly I found YouTube captions early on to be pretty darn bad. The Google speech recognition tool wasn't up to snuff and it sometimes led to hilarious results. But, to it's credit, the company has made strides to improve. In fact, if you have used Android lately then I think you will find speech-to-text to be pretty solid.
YouTube, a Google property, introduced captions back in 2009. At the time it was English only, but as the technology improved other languages were added -- Japanese, Korean and Spanish were next to appear. Now the service offers an additional six languages.
While YouTube calls this a "European" addition, it means a bit more than that. After all, many of these languages are now spread out to diverse locations. For instance, Portuguese is the language of Brazil, which has a large population of Internet-savvy users.
In all, six languages were added yesterday -- German, Italian, French, Portuguese, Russian and Dutch.
If you are a content producer, and worried about the aforementioned "hilarious results" then you do have the option to upload a transcript of the dialogue of your video to avoid embarrassment.
With all of the video being uploaded these days and the worldwide audience, captions, especially translated ones (which YouTube can do in beta) is a huge plus. Of course, the biggest plus is to the hearing impaired users who have no doubt been waiting for this.