Archive for March, 2013

16
Mar
13

The Biggest Challenge: Accent

In transcription, there are hurdles in coming up with a good transcript.  Well, for one, if you’re not a fast typist, you’re definitely not going to make it to the deadline.  Two, if you can barely hear the audio properly, that will turn out to be a bad transcript with all the blank lines in place of correct words.  Actually, that isn’t really your problem, it’s the client’s problem.  That’s another topic altogether.  Three, if you’re not familiar with the speakers’ accents, you wouldn’t hear the words correctly either.  You’re going to have another transcript with misspelt and misheard words.  And that spells trouble for you.

You see, if you’re a transcriber, transcriptionist, audio transcriber/transcriptionist, listening to different types of accents is a good practice.  Like if you’re already used to American accents, why not try listening to someone speaking with a British accent and probably compare how they pronounce words compared to an American-accented speaker.

Not that there are just two types of accents that I know, there are definitely tons of them out there.  For instance, I get to hear people speaking in English with a Finnish, Norwegian, German, South African, French or Indonesian accent.  It will really be a great help in your transcription job especially if you were assigned to transcribe a foreign-sounding-accent audio that you have to finish in one day.  If there are so many words that you cannot decipher, you have to let your boss know about this and won’t be happy about it because you couldn’t get the words right in the transcript.

As a professional transcriber, you have to get used to the accents so that when someone asks you to transcribe an audio with, let’s say, an Indian accent, you’ll be able to do the job well and your boss will even love you for that and give you more foreign-sounding audios for you to work on and that equates to, yes, you guessed it, more income for you.

That’s why knowing and listening to different kinds of accents is a great help if you’re in this industry.  To do this, you can go to YouTube and watch a movie using your headset and try to listen to what people are saying.  If not, if you have cable TV, watch BBC or CNN or any movie with a French, Indian, British, South African or whatever accent that you can find and listen to.  That wouldn’t be so bad.  There’s no harm in trying and you’ve got nothing to lose, right?

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