The Foreign Subtitling and Video Translation Process
Due to the popularity of online marketing through video, there is an increasing need for businesses to translate video content. Many professionals are taking advantage of video marketing; creating subtitles in order to expand into foreign markets. When it comes to adding foreign subtitles to your videos, it pays to know the process in order to get the best bang for your buck. So here it is, our breakdown of the foreign subtitling and video translation process.
High quality subtitles can vastly benefit search engine optimisation, and adding translations can mean ranking not just in your own country but internationally. Similarly, using closed captioning services (both foreign and English) means your videos will be accessible to a much wider audience. When using subtitling services for foreign videos, there are a number of options, prices and styles available and choosing the right services is absolutely vital in achieving the best results. So here’s our run down of what’s available and what to look out for when it comes to foreign subtitling and closed caption translations.
Video Transcription Services
In order to subtitle a video, it first need to be transcribed. The transcription process involves typing out all dialogue spoken in a video. This can be done with or without time codes; in intelligent verbatim or verbatim style. Verbatim transcription includes ALL dialogue, even fillers (ah, um, etc) and repetitions. Intelligent verbatim transcription includes the vast majority of dialogue, but excludes fillers and repetitions.
For foreign subtitling where translation is involved, it’s recommended to use an intelligent verbatim style for the original transcription. There are a few reasons for this. Repetition and filler words are pointless and sometimes difficult for translators to work with. Excluding them ensures more easy-to-read final captions. Excluding dialogue that is surplus to requirements helps to avoid any unnecessary costs in translating meaningless filler words, as typically translations are carried out on a ‘per word’ basis.
When using foreign language closed captioning services, the standard is always to use a verbatim style which includes all dialogue (if possible) to ensure accessibility. Some exceptions can be made to this rule where words need to be removed to ensure adequate reading speeds and line lengths. Remember, closed captions are intended for deaf and hard of hearing audiences (foreign or otherwise) and their aim is to as much as possible ensure the exact same viewing experience for both the hearing and non-hearing.
English Video Transcription
If your video is English and you are going to be translating it into a foreign language, first you will need an English transcript for the subtitling company to work from. Prices for typing services vary, but many UK transcription companies offer transcription services starting as low as £1.00 per audio minute. Check around for the best price, but bear in mind, errors in transcription can create extra costs in terms of amending subtitles.
The best option is to find a company that can work with both video transcription and subtitling, so the overall price also covers any transcript amendments.
Foreign Video Transcription
If you have foreign speakers in your video, you will need foreign transcription services prior to starting with foreign subtitling and video translation. Many UK transcription and subtitling companies offer foreign transcription alongside their English services. Our foreign transcription services start from £3.00 per audio minute and include French transcription, German transcription, Italian transcription, Spanish transcription, Greek transcription and many other languages on request…
Once you have a transcript of your video ready, it’s time to work on the video subtitling or closed captioning. You may not actually require subtitles in the source language, but in order to create the most accurate translations for foreign subtitles, you will need an adequately timed, formatted and styled captioning template to work from.
Subtitling and Closed Captioning involves:
- Syncing timings of onscreen text to dialogue
- Keeping reading speeds adequate so viewers have time to read through each subtitle
- Setting maximum subtitle durations, so there are no subtitles which appear to ‘linger too long’
- Working with subtitling and captioning guidelines to ensure line and subtitle splits that make syntactical sense
- Styling subtitles to indicate multiple speakers, forced subtitles and sound effects
- Formatting subtitle text for effects such as changes in colour, italics, roll-up or pop-on animation, etc.
- Coding to ensure foreign characters display correctly
Translations and Subtitling Services for Foreign Videos
Firstly, your chosen subtitling company will create an online or broadcast format caption template in the source language. Next, they will work on foreign subtitling and video translation. Working line by line to translate and maintain all the above criteria is the most reliable and accurate method for translating subtitles.
Translation and captioning companies may sometimes offer services to translate subtitles directly from audio. This is an attractive option for clients on a budget because a subtitling price can be agreed before starting work. However, it’s important to be aware of two things when using this method. Firstly, for videos with large gaps in audio, the price may actually work out higher than ordering translation per word. Also, this method can potentially compromise accuracy and simplify the translation.
Remember, for the most accurate and reliable foreign subtitling and video translation services, the process is Transcription; Subtitling; Translation.