Blended Learning Videos

How to get closed captions on YouTube

Closed captions or transcribed video is a great idea for your YouTube videos. It allows watchers to follow along is a loud environment (like public transport) as well as offering the hearing impaired an opportunity to partake. Of course, learners of a new language can also use the transcription service to read the words as people speak.

Here are some simple steps to follow to add captions to any YouTube video. Take this example:

To add closed captions, follow these steps:

  1. Click on the settings tool on the YouTube video interface (looks like a gearwheel) ** within ** the video pane
  2. Select subtitles: automatic
  3. Let Google’s AI do all of the heavy linguistic lifting.

The image below shows you hot to do this. Notice that my computer is configured in French, but that doesn’t matter, you get the idea:

Then, you can copy-paste the transcript by using the interface. Here’s how:

  1. Click on the “more options” icon – the three grey dots next to the “save” option ** below ** the video
  2. Select “open transcription pane”
  3. Read along !

Comments or questions are welcome !

Industries and Markets

Thoughts on the April 2nd meeting

I wanted to provide an account of our meetup yesterday concerning the indie games in libraries initiative. Thanks to tagsters Kalervo and Michael as well as Valérie Rioux, whom is new to TAG (she is an innovation & games librarian expert) for your insight, ideas and interest in the indie games in libraries initiative!

Results of our discussions

We started the meeting by exploring some ideas on the blackboard (see attached image). During the conversation, we all added components to it, making is (essentially) the product of our collaborative exchange. (Minutes in pictoral form are so much more poetic!)

The initial idea behind the structure of the image was to use a legal/cybernetic/librarianship conceptual framework (partly of my own design) to organize our ideas (data points) for the project. In this structure, we posit “objects” of law (in this case, “games” as copyrightable works, but also the metadata about them) as well as “subjects” of law (indies and their studios, libraries and the people who work there as well as patrons and possible organisations such as games club – notice how there is a dual structure, looking at “physical” persons and “moral” persons – in keeping with how the law looks at society). Then, “vectors” are “ways” to link objects and subjects, through technology, institutional arrangements and other such means. (Are we having fun yet?)

Of course, our conversation was a mix of many threads. We discussed what we had learned from previous iterations of the project, most notably the grand we received in 2015 from the Knight Foundation. We also covered a lot of ground in terms of other topics, here are some of the things that have stuck in my mind, taking from the vector “stack” from the left-hand bottom quadrant:

– Selecting games: how can games scholars contribute to selecting games within the library context? Why can’t libraries just harvest “free” games posted on various platforms? (hint: libraries have to respect contracts and free doesn’t imply consent) Do the interest of indies and libraries intersect in a meaningful way? Should we target academic libraries instead of the public/school library sector? How can selecting games support indie studios and long-term preservation?

– Certification: Pros & cons of online “streaming” platform vs. physical console. Technical specifications to communicate to indies for inclusion on the platform (as a dealbreaker for consideration for acquisition).

– Contextualize: How can games be linked to other elements within a library’s collection? Home use or in-library use. Gaming experience of playing within library context.

(and many more ideas)

One of the threads I wanted to discuss with the group was funding. I’ve spent too much time writing grant applications to finance the development of this project and not enough time “actually advancing” it. So, maybe it is time to consider how we could launch a commercial venture to make this happen instead of tweaking the project to whatever funding opportunity pops up on our radar… Needless to say, we had some great conversations on this thread.

The group discussed the idea that a for-profit venture may be negatively perceived by the indie community. We identified a thriving non-profit ecosystem, both on the indie side (MRGS, Hand Eye society, TAG & other research groups…) as well as the library side (cities, school boards and the like are all state entities and libraries band together in not-for profit associations to deal with ebook licensing). A for-profit venture would allow for commercialization (e.g. licensing) of games in libraries in a nimble and direct fashion. In fact, it could complement the existing not-for profit ecosystem particularly should these non-profits become shareholders in the enterprise. It could also provide for employment opportunities to project participants. (see the top-middle quadrant of the image for the “dual headed” monster illustrating non-profit – NP – organisations holding shares in an incorporated – INC – venture).

I have to admit that I have created a company named Junto Media ™ a few months ago to test these ideas. You see, I research institutional arrangements (contracts, licences and the like) and a company almost becomes a necessary research object. Also, the concept of “profit” is necessary in working with economic rights vested in copyrights but which need to enable a community of not-profit organisations (commons). Profit is certainly the elephant in the copyright room…

Now, I registered Junto Media ™ as offering “other publishing services” within the government’s classification of enterprises. Publishing is what games (and software) companies do, I we can use this structure to test both publishing games as well as licensing them to libraries as a platform (like a bookstore would). Right now, I’ve managed to generate a tiny amount of revenue from the licensing of certain copyrighted works I’m creating for clients – I am willing to put this revenue on the table to support the Indie Games in Libraries project! I also would like to build a “bridge” between TAG and other Not-for-profit organisations and the broader “moral person” ecosystem.

In that sense, this project, as a reflexive internal exercise, also exists in the “commercialization” space within universities. I am wholeheartedly committed to explore this space in an open, transparent, fair and playful manner. In addition to profit, we also discussed concepts as revenue, jobs, community, sharing and redistribution. Of all the things I would never claim to be, I can assert that I tinker with legal code for the betterment of society. Junto Media is the “program” I am hacking on the neoliberal operating system of society, linked to TAG’s API…

I’m hoping the group would help me figure out the “what” and “how” of it all. And help me share the wealth of properly structured institutional arrangements… I hope I won’t be the sole shareholder for long….

In terms of next steps, we are meeting again on Tuesday April 16th at 10am in TAG. Here are my action items:

– connect “team” members by email and collate documentation on a shared drive

– write up the minutes of the meeting (DONE!)

– start thinking how to synthesize all of this information to explain what the project entails…


Rebooting the licensing games for libraries initiative

Following the Microtalk I gave last Wednesday at TAG, I wanted to thank everyone for their interest and comments. As I reported, I learned the day before the Microtalks that we did not secure  funding to relaunch the licensing project through the Story Bikes idea. Arguably, I was really interested in looking at the legal issues of that project… which bring me to the reason I’m writing this post. Did anyone say PIVOT? 😉 

As a librarian and doctor-of-laws*, the problem(s) I seek out in my research involve(s) complex institutional arrangements within the realm of information, arts and culture. Games (and anything in the general area of new-ish complex-ish copyrightable works, mostly digital but not exclusively) are my preferred object of study and my preferred subjects are libraries and the environments they subsist in (Cities, Universities, School Boards, Prisons, and yeah, mostly any state-like institution you can think of). The vector linking my object(s) and subject(s) are legal arrangements fostered through institutions like markets, firms (old school Coasian classics, but also newer ones – from the perspective of Western thought – and their correlating mirror image, namely) commons or algorithms (full disclosure: I am a cyberneticist dabbling in socioeconomic theories in the post-modern sense, but I can easily “code switch” as I routinely have to interact with people working on positive or natural theories of law, e.g.: mostly lawyers – I am also a librarian, so I have to be conversant on a wide array of theoretical, conceptual, methodological and analytical approaches in any scientific field – any and all ideas welcome in my Thought Bazar).

Many existing digital platforms ward off libraries from acquiring content (think Steam, iTunes, Google Play and their ilk). Québec and other jurisdictions also have some stringent regulations applied to how certain libraries can acquire content. My working hypothesis (fear!) is that this platform & regulatory “double punch” will render Libraries KO in the digital world. Remember, without libraries (and archives and museums – collectively referred to as LAMs), society does not have many alternatives for us to consume content beyond buying it on a market… unless you consider piracy or the creation of original content as alternatives, but do they really allow for the participation in an open democratic society? I position libraries as an alternate institutional arrangements “feeding off” markets but eliminating market failures (citizens too poor to buy a game) or negative externalities (not knowing about the existence of a great game) as well as power asymmetries (incapacity to join/participate a social group because one lacks knowledge/agency). Certain types of works and many digital markets exclude libraries, which, in turn, excludes so many more… (sigh) 

As far as I’m concerned, indie games represent the PERFECT STORM for my research… I feel that if I can get indie games in libraries, I will have made my humble contribution in minding these gaps…

Despite the very temporary setback of not getting the grant for the Story Bike idea, I remain unshaken in my resolve to get more indie games (and, more broadly, informational, cultural and artistic copyrighted works) in libraries, as my personal social hack of existing institutional networks for the betterment of a plurality of voices and expressions in our crazy world. 

I know TAG has always been active with libraries through the amazing Arcade 11 initiative – this ongoing event is what sent me on this research path so I must recognize the essential work undertaken to keep the relationship with Libraries active! I am hoping to go deeper in the games in libraries thread. Please contact me if this interests you !

Olivier Charbonneau

Olivier Charbonneau is an associate Librarian at Concordia University, Olivier Charbonneau is primarily interested in copyright issues as well as questions of open access and Web 2.0. He is a doctoral student at the Faculté de droit, Université de Montréal. He has over 15 years of professional involvement in library and cultural communities. He holds two masters degrees from Université de Montréal, one in information sciences and another in law, as well as an undergraduate degree in commerce from McGill University.