Zoom: Live Transcription Service

Effective Winter 2021, Zoom has released an automated Live Transcription (closed captioning) service to Educational/Pro account holders. This service automatically captions the speakers in your Zoom meetings, adding their text to the bottom of the meeting window, as well as a making a live transcript available in its own panel 

Configuring Live Transcription -  Zoom Account Settings 

Although the institution has enabled the Live Transcription service by default, some users may still be required to manually enable the service. This can be accomplished by modifying the Settings of your Zoom.us account.

1. Log into your Zoom account through the Zoom.us website.

2. Select Settings from the left-hand navigation panel.

3. Ensure you are on the Meeting taband then click In Meeting (Advanced).

4. Scroll down to find ClosedCaptioning options. Closed Captioning should be enabled by default for your institutional Zoom Pro licence. If disabled, you can enable by activating the toggle.

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5. Complete the process by then selecting Enable on the resulting pop-up.

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6. Check the boxes next to Allow live transcription service to transcribe meeting automatically and Allow viewing of full transcript in the in-meeting side panel, and then click Save.

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7. Decide if you would like to allow participants to save meeting transcripts and configure the Save Captions option accordingly. 

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8. Live transcription will now be available for all future meetings, including already scheduled meetings.  

Utilizing Live Transcription (In a Meeting) 

Once live transcriptions are enabled on your account, you can enable/disable a Live Transcript within your Zoom meetings. For new meetings, live transcription (closed captioning) is disabled by default and must be enabled in each new meeting as requiredParticipants will not be able to use the service if it has not been enabled by the host.

1. To enable live transcription, first start your meeting.

2. Click on the CC Live Transcript icon in your Zoom meeting controls.

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Note: If you cannot see this button, click on the More... icon.

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3. From the pop-up panel, click the Enable Auto-Transcription button. Additionally, you have the option to Allow participants to request Live Transcription.

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Enable/View Live Transcription (Closed Captions) as a Participant 

Once you have enabled live transcriptions, participants may see a "Live Transcript is available" message and the CC Live Transcript button will become available. Captions DO NOT automatically appear for your participants; each participant must click the CC button to show captions or view the live transcription. 

If you are hosting a meeting with live transcription, we recommend making a comment at the beginning of your meeting to inform participants that live transcription is available and a note about how to enable them. 

From the Live Transcript menu, participants will have several optionto choose how they view the transcription.

1. Click the CC Live Transcript button. 

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2. Click one of the following:

  • Show SubtitlesDisplays captioning on the bottom of the video. To hide them, select Hide Subtitle.
  • View Full Transcript Opens a panel/pop-up and displays captions in real-time with both the speaker's name and time stamp. In that pop-up, participants will also see a button to save the transcript. (This button might not be available if you have disabled this functionality.) If enabled, click Save Transcript. A copy of the transcript as a .txt file will be downloaded to your computer.

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Note: Transcripts save up to the moment when you click Save Transcript. If you click Save Transcript multiple times throughout the event, it will overwrite/update the existing file. We recommend clicking Save Transcript just before the meeting ends to ensure you have the transcript from the entire meeting. There is no option to auto-save these transcripts.

  • Subtitle Settings - Opens a window where you can adjust the font size of both the subtitles (captions).

Request Host to Enable Live Transcription

If enabled by the host, a participant can request live transcription if not already active in the meeting. To do so, click on the Live Transcript button. The following pop-up will appear providing you the option to ask anonymously.

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The meeting host can respond in three (3) ways:

  1. Enable: This enables live transcription for anyone in the meeting.
  2. Decline: This declines the request for live transcription; other meeting participants can still request live transcription.
  3. Decline and don’t ask again: This declines any request for live transcriptions and prevents others from requesting.

Important Additional Information 

  • Live transcription does not work in breakout rooms; it works only within the main session.
  • If recording your meeting, the CC live transcript (closed captions) will not be shown in your recordings.
  • Consider using a headset that has a built-in microphone; it will clear up the quality of your audio for the live transcription.
  • Speak slowly and clearly to help the system capture your speech.
  • If there are multiple speakers, avoid speaking over each other; allow one person to finish speaking before moving on to the next.