Oral Culture Transcription Toolkit/Wiki Workflow

After the recording of audios and videos, one has to upload them on the Wiki platforms: Wikimedia Commons and Wikisource. Uploading data on both the platforms is interrelated as once the media file has been uploaded on Commons, a transcription of it is to be created and uploaded on the digital library Wikisource, therefore uploading both a video file and a text file of the oral culture on digital platforms.

Recording a video and uploading on Wikimedia CommonsEdit

Follow these steps to upload videos on Wikimedia Commons (the largest Wiki repository of media files), subtitle them, and make the subtitles available on Wikisource (another repository for text files where you can find a wide range of mainstream and indigenous texts).

  1. Select the video you are going to upload, check that its orientation is correct. Edit to crop, reorient if necessary, before uploading.
  2. After the media file has been uploaded on Wikimedia Commons, you can then create a subtitle file for the same and upload the text on Wikisource. There are several platforms, paid and unpaid, that let you practice easy subtitling experience and added comforts. These are the most used and recommended websites:
  3. While recording a video, hold your phone horizontally rather than vertically to ensure maximum coverage of the surface area.
  4. Using a stand for the phone/camera is advised to avoid exhaustion and disturbance due to movement.
  5. Creator can upload the video in two ways:
    • Video2Commons can be used to upload video files on Wikimedia Commons by converting files first
    • Directly upload files on Wikimedia Commons
  6. You can also use this resource to learn how to upload media, how to make it compatible and other details on Wikimedia Commons elaborately by visiting this link for Commons video page- https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Commons:Video

Subtitling and uploading on Wikimedia CommonsEdit

  1. Transfer your recorded videos from the device to PC or Laptop
  2. Choose a free and open source software to subtitle your video, such as Amara. Go to Amara (it’s a free subtitling platform, you can also use another subtitling platform and even YouTube if you need any specific features not available on the website)- enter the URL of the video, select the language you want to create a subtitle in.
  3. Amara is preferable over YouTube since it is not in public view, if you however want to use only YT, you can upload the video as ‘unlisted’ instead of ‘public’.
  4. Open Amara, insert the link to the media file uploaded on Commons. Remember to copy the link right below the media file uploaded on Commons, also highlighted as 'original file', not the URL on the top of the page. Put the cursor on 'original file', right click on it and copy the link.
  5. You can then begin subtitling after entering the link to the video on Amara.
  6. Type the subtitles/text, click on ‘start syncing’, listen to the audio and sync accordingly.
  7. Set the timing of each sentence/string of words, you can do this while playing the video and pausing it at required intervals.
  8. Once the above steps are complete, you can start reviewing i.e. listen to the video and make edits if needed, then publish it.
  9. Subsequently, download subtitles, after you choose the format (SRT for Commons, TXT for Wikisource).
  10. On the Commons website go to the video uploaded by you (click on ‘contributions’ on upper right hand side of the page) select 'timed text', select language, paste the SRT text.

Updating text on WikisourceEdit

  1. Go to Wikisource.org or your local Wikisource.
  2. In order to create a new page, it is advised first to check if it exists on Wikisource using the search bar.
  3. If it doesn’t, you will see the option to create a new page by that name.
  4. You will find the option to include categories like ‘title’, ‘author’, ‘translator’, ‘section’, ‘previous’, ‘next’, and ‘notes’ at the top of the page, you can fill the particulars as applicable. Have a look at this link to understand the concept better.
  5. Next, you can copy and paste the subtitles you created on Amara in the TXT format. For a more presentable and easily readable text, center it to the middle of the page.
  6. Add the name of the language, type of folk-art and other such details of the file to ‘Categories’. Once you enter any detail, you will see a link to an already existing page by that name, if it already exists.
  7. In order to link the original audio-visual file uploaded on Commons to the transcribed file on Wikisource, you need to provide some details in the Wikisource file. Just before the TXT text you will find the category of 'file', enter the name of the video file uploaded by you on Commons next to it. For a better, visual understanding of the concept, click on this link.


Oral Culture Transcription Toolkit

Documentation of oral culture ensures the preservation of culture as well as language. This toolkit gives detailed instructions on how to record oral culture, how to upload them on Wikimedia Commons, to create a transcription and upload it on Wikisource. A list of interview questions for successful elicitation of the language and culture of the community has also been included.

Audio-Video Recording

How to create high-quality videos and audios for language documentation? These tips help you navigate audio-visual recording with ease.

Oral Culture Transcription Toolkit/Interview Questions

Effectiveness in language documentation is successful with preparedness, it is helpful to have a list of questions that help in thorough elicitation of vocabulary.