The Dangers of Automated Subtitling

Many people use the automatic subtitling services offered by YouTube and others, but how many of these users have actually been through and checked what the output is once they have enabled the subtitling?

Cheshire Headteacher in Subtitling Shock

A Cheshire headteacher recently used AI subtitles in a celebration assembly for her primary school pupils. This is what was produced by the automated subtitling at one point during the assembly:

Cheshire Headmistress giving Celebration Assembly via video with automated subtitling.

“in your sex I think if I move that might give you a clue because if…”

Complete gibberish!

This is very common. Put the subtitles on for BBC News and see what the automated subtitling throws up on there at times. It can be more guesswork trying to work out what is actually being said than what has been written in the subtitles.

Automated Subtitling v Professional Subtitling

This is why services like TP Transcription exist, despite greatly exaggerated rumours of our demise, ever since we started in 2001! Although AI subtitling plays an important part in providing instant subtitles for live programmes such as the news, it is not accurate enough to be trusted to produce subtitles for recordings without being checked very carefully.

Always check your Subtitles

Even though it is a laborious task to sit and watch yourself after recording any videos, you should always make a point of watching the video through in its entirety with the subtitles switched on, simply to make sure that there are no slip ups like the video still above!

Star Wars subtitling gone badly wrong!

Our Accreditations

We are Cyber Essentials Plus audited annually and we hold the Cyber Essentials and Cyber Essentials Plus certificates. We are UKAS ISO 27001:2022 audited and accredited and ISO 9001 & ISO 14001 systems accredited company. We are members of the American Translators Association and we are assessed for GDPR compliance annually by IASME (Cyber Assurance Level 1).

10% Profits to Charity

10% of our profits are donated to the Ten Percent Foundation, a charitable trust registered in the UK. Since 2000 over £150,000 has been donated to projects in Africa and the UK. Click here for details.