Ever asked yourself,
"How does live captioning work?"

Read on...

What are Captions?

Captions are a way for people to access the spoken word via text.​ It is a form of speech-to-text interpreting that allows greater access and participation for the user.

How do we do it?

Stenocaptioners use a Stenograph machine and specialised software to translate speech into text. Using a type of shorthand, the stenographer enters the words into the “steno” machine – we call this “writing” – and the software translates the input into captions. The translation is almost immediate, so you see the text only moments after the words are said. The slight delay is because the stenocaptioner needs to hear and write the words and the software’s processing time.

Are captions only useful for the deaf or hard of hearing?

Captions assist both hearing and deaf users to understand more clearly, and leave less chance of misinterpretation. They have become a must-have to cater for neurodivergent audiences. Some examples of where captions are useful:

  • those who have English as a second language;
  • those who find it easier to understand from reading text rather than listening to the spoken word;
  • note-taking at conferences – captions allow participants to take more accurate notes and can be used to catch something that was missed; and
  • as a complement to the spoken word.

Are the captions accurate?

A skilled Stenocaptioner will produce highly accurate real-time captions (over 99% accuracy) while maintaining caption integrity. Stenocaptioners experience the same audio issues as everyone else in the room and these issues may include poor audibility, highly-complex content e.g. specialised content or jargon, and poor speakers.

Is captioning expensive?

The cost of captioning reflects the value of the product. Stenocaptioners are a highly-skilled and scarce resource but we keep our rates as low as possible so you can afford to use top quality live captioning.

When comparing prices it’s important to compare apples with apples. Make sure you are getting what you pay for – quality captions. Often with remote you may discover that the person captioning for you is, in fact, a respeaker or not a person at all but automated captions. It is a fact that the best captions are produced by a trained stenographer. At CaptionsLIVE we only use stenocaptioners so you are always guaranteed the best.