These videos need subtitling — And you can help!

By subtitling some of the videos on WordPress.tv, you can contribute to the WordPress Project. Help us extend the reach of this amazing library of resources on WordPress.tv. The talks are well worth it!

Thousands of useful and fascinating videos can be found at WordPress.tv from the range of talks held at WordCamps and other WordPress-related events. Think of meetups, interviews, testimonials, WordPress Translation Days, and so on. Did you know that there are close to 10,000 videos on WordPress.tv? That’s a serious archive right there. Started in January 2009, we’ve come a long way.

You can choose from an online collection of interesting presentations and interviews filmed across the world. Through these free to access videos, you can share in the experience of WordCamps and other WordPress-related events. By subtitling some of the videos, you can contribute. Help us extend the reach of this amazing library of resources on WordPress.tv. The talks are well worth it!”

People from across the WordPress community donate their time and skills to present these talks. From developers and designers to content creators and community representatives. These professionals and enthusiasts share their experiences and knowledge freely with others. That’s open source! The volunteer WordPress.tv team support WordCamps and the community on making these videos available and managing the resource.

These videos also need subtitling. And that’s where you could join in! Subtitling is important and you can contribute without needing any coding skills.

Why do WordPress.tv videos need subtitles?

There are so many wonderful and informative videos published on WordPress.tv. Unfortunately, only a very small number of them offer subtitles. Why does that matter?

1) Foremostly, a subtitled video is more accessible. Subtitles assist people with hearing difficulties to share the experience of the talk and access the information within it.

“Being deaf/hard of hearing means there is certain information I struggle to access… accurate subtitles/captions and good quality audio is essential for me in order to be able to consume video/audio-based content. Too many times I have had to cancel listening to a podcast or watching a video on the web within seconds after starting because of the audio or lack of captions or transcripts. The learning experience can be a hugely frustrating one if what I want to learn is not accessible to me.” 

Ahmed Khalifa, WordCamp Organizer

2) The text can enable people to watch a video without needing sound. This can be, for instance, when accessing it at work or on the train.

3) Subtitles could also be translations. They help people that don’t fully understand the talk in its original language. For instance, an English talk could also have French subtitles.

4) Subtitles can reinforce professional development opportunities and with deciphering unfamiliar jargon or terms. WordPress.tv video segments are used by some WordPress Meetups. Subtitles can help with access for their audiences, general learning, and aid participation.

5) The subtitled text can also be used on other channels if the video or part of it is featured as part of a WordCamp promotion on other video platforms, such as Vimeo or YouTube.

Creating Subtitles is Easy

You don’t need specific skills or experience to contribute subtitles. It’s easy as this:

  • Choose a Video
  • Create the Caption File
  • Submit File to WordPress.tv team for Review

As the WordPress Marketing team, we will be featuring useful videos of WordCamp talks during the next months. We hope that doing so will, among other things, inspire more people to join in and subtitle videos on WordPress.tv. Let’s make these videos more accessible so they reach a wider audience!

Great subtitling tools are available at no cost, like Amara.org. Amara offers an easy interface in which you can enter subtitles and set the correct timings while watching the video. It’s also easy to use when creating subtitles in a different language than the video is in.

How to create subtitles for WordPress.tv

The WordPress.tv team has done a great job explaining how to add captions or subtitles to a WordPress.tv video already. Here’s a great short video that walks you through the steps of subtitling for WordPress.tv.

Quite easy right? Amara lets you save your progress so you can get back to it at any time. That way, even if you only have a few minutes to spare, you can add another few lines of subtitles.

At the moment, the WordPress.tv team is uploading videos to YouTube as well. YouTube adds automatically generated subtitles, which can be edited afterward. This could make things a lot easier! Check out the WordPress YouTube channel.

Subtitles or translations?

For subtitling, all you need to do is watch the video and write the lines that you hear, in the language they’re spoken. If you are so inspired by the video talk, you can add a translation too! A lot of videos on WordPress.tv are English spoken. Adding other language transcripts increases accessibility and usability for these wonderful resources.

Getting started

Subtitling is a flexible way of contributing. You can work on specific subtitles when and where you want to. You could work on them for a couple of hours or for ten minutes at a time. The length of videos also differs: short and long are videos available for subtitling. Take your pick!

Visit WordPress.tv, find a video that you enjoy and get started. Of course, it’s a good idea to check if the video has already been subtitled. Most of them aren’t, which is why it would be great to have you helping out.

We will be featuring regular blog posts on the Make WordPress Marketing blog (link: https://make.wordpress.org/marketing/) that highlight videos from WordPress.tv.

Thanks to @siobhanseija and @webcommsat for this blog series and leading the project. Thanks to @casiepa and @drbe4t for their input. Thank you to all those who are subtitling the WordPress.tv videos.