Hey everybody. If you have a presence on Facebook, and you’ve uploaded a video, you may have noticed that adding Closed Captions is nowhere near as easy and efficient as it is when using Youtube. I actually thought, until today, that Facebook didn’t even provide the option. I assume that I simply missed it the first few times I looked for it.
The problem is that the only option Facebook provides is for you to upload an .SRT file, or Sub Rip Text. Youtube provides multiple options, my preference being ‘Transcribe And Auto Sync’. I paste the script in, and a minute or two later it has it all lined up. The problem with expecting the average video creator to have an .SRT file handy is that it takes an additional number of steps that most uploaders won’t go through. From what I’ve seen, even on Youtube, a very large number of video creators rely on Youtube’s auto-generated captions. If I had to put it diplomatically, I’d say that the auto-generated captions are just not very good. I tried contacting a few people recently about the possibility of developing an algorithm based on literature, weighted for more recent works, so that the captions could be generated in a way that actually makes sense for the language used.
When I was adding captions to my video this evening, I noticed that Youtube actually has an option to download captions directly in various formats, one of which is .SRT , so I figured I’d go through the steps quickly and hopefully this helps other content creators out there increase accessibility.
Step One: Go to the Video Manager section of your Youtube channel. Click on the video which you want the captions from. Keep in mind you have to already have existing captions to do this.
Step Two: Click on the language of the captions you want to download.
Step Three: Click Actions on the right, then scroll down to .srt . Click this, and it will save to your default folder, usually ‘Downloads’ with Windows.
Step Four: Go to your Facebook page and locate the video you wish to add Subtitles to. Click on the downward arrow in the upper right hand corner, scroll down to ‘Edit Post’, and then click it.
Step Five: Once you see this window, click ‘Upload SRT File’.
Step Six: You’ll want to rename your caption file, which Youtube automatically names “captions.srt”. You’ll need to use an .srt code depending on your language, which Facebook should recommend to you if you don’t automatically include it. In the next image you’ll see that between my file name and the file extension I’ve added .en_US
Step Seven: The new file name is channeltrailer.en_US.srt . I believe the codes at the following link are what’s needed, but I’ve only heard of .srt files today, so I’m no expert by any means. Here’s the link: http://www.science.co.il/Language/Codes.asp. After this, open the file.
Step Eight: Now that everything is set, just select the language of the Closed Captions as the default language, and then click the ‘Save’ button. If you don’t include the language code, it will let you know at this point.
That’s everything you need to do to quickly and easily transfer over captions for videos you add to Facebook. I hope this has been helpful. If you have any questions, or if I messed up somewhere, please let me know! Thanks for coming by, and have a great day.