Sometimes there is no transcriber available to be at a lecture or meeting site. In that case, a transcriber can use the TypeWell Premium software to link remotely with the reader. The transcriber can be located far away from the lecture site, even in another state. The lecturer wears a microphone and the speech is sent over the Internet to the transcriber. The transcriber's transcript is sent back over the Internet to the reader at the lecture site.
Another situation where remote services can be used is when the transcriber is at the lecture site, but the reader is not. This is the case for students who take real-time, or synchronous, distance learning classes using streaming video to access the class. The reader can type questions and comments to be voiced aloud in the class by the transcriber.
Remote transcribing is more complicated than on-site transcribing because there's more technology involved, and because organized teamwork is needed when the transcriber is not at the lecture site to handle unusual situations.For example, if the transcriber is at a remote site, he or she cannot assist with equipment set-up at the lecture site. Someone at the lecture site must be trained to set up the computer for the reader and the microphone for the lecturer. In some cases, a technically savvy reader can take care of this, but this requires advance planning and training for the reader.
Because of the increased potential for disruption of service, you and your remote service provider should plan ahead to provide backup solutions. Here are some items to consider:
- Microphone batteries should be charged or changed regularly (usually every day), so they don't run out mid-lecture. This is a common failure point.
- Have a backup service provider if the transcriber is unavoidably detained (such as due to Internet failure at the transcriber's location).
- Work with an IT person at the lecture site to make sure there's a reliable high-speed Internet connection with enough bandwidth to support a Skype voice call with the transcriber.