Live broadcast captioning is done in real time by a captioner using a special steno machine. Because they are writing live, they do not have the ability to go back and fix any mistakes. This type of real time captioning is done for live programming, like a sports game, news broadcast, or awards ceremony.
The secret behind live captioning lies in the use of a stenography machine operated by highly skilled and experienced real-time captioners. These captioners can type each word phonetically using the steno machine, saving valuable time by bypassing the need to type individual letters. The steno machine is connected to specialized software that includes the captioner's personal dictionary. It translates the steno data into English text, which is then transmitted via a phone line, modem, or IP connection to the television station. As the program airs, the text is encoded into the broadcast signal, and voila! The program's audio is transformed into captions and deciphered by your television.
Using a steno machine is no easy task that one can simply pick up and start typing on. It requires dedicated training. Typically, a captioner or steno writer undergoes 2-5 years of schooling to acquire the necessary skills. Our real-time captioners, with years of experience under their belts, boast an accuracy rate of 98% or higher, capable of typing at speeds exceeding 250 words per minute! At Aberdeen, we pride ourselves on having the best real time captioning services in the industry. Many of them specialize in specific program content, allowing them to build up their steno dictionaries with key terminology, whether it's related to the Bible, sports, and more.