weekend thoughts

Sometimes I have an objectively productive weekend, but I still feel like I didn’t do enough and should have done more.

I can’t tell how productive I was. I feel like I should have done more and spent time goofing off. You decide.

What I did:
mowed the front and back yards
took out the trash and recycling
washed the basement floor in the corner where water had gotten to the boxes, including getting all the cardboard pieces that were stuck up and bleaching where the mold was
organized all the boxes I keep for shipping and managed to get them condensed and stored under the steps
organized my closet in my kitchen including bringing the food extras to the basement where I now have shelves for that
hammered in one of those Ikea plastic things that I think are meant for plastic bags onto the wall in that closet to use to hold all my wrapping paper

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made and canned 8 pints of tomato sauce, labeled them, put them away, and cleaned up the canner and pots
figured out what I am canning this year, when, and what I need to get
one load of laundry and put it away
gym Saturday morning
took out a bunch of the garbage boxes from the basement, not all since there wasn’t a lot of space in the dumpsters and I was feeling lazy
ran the dishwasher and emptied it
picked up my guest room
went to Starbucks to use the internet and captioned 3 videos (not mine, youtubers who open them to public captioning, read my side note on this below)
wrote out my to do list for next week
random non-productive things like posting online and on social media and watching tv and DVDs

Side note on captions – this takes a long time to do when it isn’t you speaking. I find my own videos easier to caption, partially due to how familiar I am with my own speech patterns and partially due to listening to the audio so frequently as I edit. Also, it is always just me talking. Delineating between multiple speakers takes longer, particularly when they talk at the same time which happens frequently with gaming videos. There is also the sound issue with these videos of not always being the most clear since there are sometimes 4 audio sources being layered in the videos. It makes it harder to hear each word exactly right which is needed when captioning.

But I enjoy doing this and I think it is important to caption and not use the auto captions. The auto captions can be quite terrible. There is no reason for YouTube to not be inclusive to people who are hard of hearing or deaf. But it did take me almost 5 hours to caption 3 videos today. It was about a half hour of total captions and one was a gaming video with 4 people.

I get very into this as well. When I caption, I want to be perfect or as close to perfect as possible. I get offended by those who don’t care.

For those who don’t know, the YouTube process for community subtitles is a multi step one. The creator opens subtitling. Then you can enter subtitles. It isn’t the same interface as a creator has and actually is a little more difficult as you set the timings at the same time as typing (the creator version has a way to enter them all at once and then automatically set timings). You can stop whenever you want. A window will pop up when you click submit that allows you to say if the subtitles are all done and ready for review or if they still need editing. You can also select to allow yourself to be credited or not. A lot of people screw this step up. If there are more sections to caption, you must click no it still needs work. Otherwise it goes to the next step. The community can review. Once it is marked ready, someone else checks it and then selects if it is ready to be published or if it needs work or should just be completely rejected if someone just typed spam or offensive content. I don’t know how many review or where the creator comes into this. Then it is published which can take a few hours.

So now that you know a little of how it works, you might see the problems like I do. I have seen a lot of things that flat out upset me. People who type the first 2 minutes really close to right (I have yet to see anyone get everything right) and then write something like hi mom. And I don’t know if people are as anal as I am about reviewing. I catch all these and reject them. Then I fix them and submit them again. But anyone could just hit publish in a review and not read it. And people are so off sometimes! I triple check everything and some clearly don’t. Also, this system relies on people not getting bored or jaded and multiple people touching everything. And someone could change my words that are correct. Or leave errors.

So herein lies the dilemma. The auto captions are terrible. This system is flawed but better in some ways and worse in others depending on who is typing. But this is all free. So how do you change it and how do you convince people that it needs to be changed and maybe that they should pay?

I have some ideas as to how it could be different:

1. YouTube could make a way for creators to select people to caption for them and then allow them access to their videos early (if they cue them up to publish at a specific time) and leave it up to them to figure out finances

2. similar to above, YouTube could help link up typists with creators. Maybe have a test or application process. Then maybe have a rating system. Leave it up to them to deal with finances

3. YouTube could have a test or some form of application process and then define an approved captioner. Creators could then select to use this service instead of having it be for everyone to caption. Then they know that they will have accurate titles. Then these approved captioners could have a screen letting them know which are available to subtitle for pay, it would most likely be similar to the current suggested videos screen. Maybe this has a reviewer too, maybe not. Then it could be set up to either be a fee per minute of video length or a percentage of the video proceeds or whatever is decided. YouTube maybe takes a cut, maybe not, but we all know how business works. YouTube then transfers the funds from the creator’s YouTube account to the subtitler’s. Once more there could be a rating system and those not making the grade could be put on probation and maybe not allowed to caption again. Maybe creators could decide if they want people with a certain rating to do their subtitling or pick certain favorites to do it and maybe that would be a different pay or maybe that is overcomplicating things.

Anyway with any of these there could still be the same system in place and these just added. Just a thought. I don’t know if anyone would care to change this or if this is just me. But I would gladly subtitle all day and make my videos and craft and teach PiYo and not have my standard day job if I could get paid for captioning. That isn’t the only reason for wanting to change this by the way. I really do believe that we should be as inclusive as possible and there is no reason for YouTube to be worse than cable TV in this respect.

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