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BE FOREWARNED: This Is Not The Place To Peddle Your Own Agenda

Please do not comment on my articles or come to my page to post your own links or promote whatever it is that you are trying to promote. How dare any of you who keep coming here and posting links and advertisements for nonsense; for debunked conspiracies; for medicines and pharmaceuticals. More disturbing, I am getting posts on my articles from scum trying to post links to smut and immoral material. I will not, for one instant, tolerate that. First of all, none of your trash can be seen in the comment section as it must be approved by me before it is posted; it won’t be posted, of that you can be assured. Secondly, if I see any more of this nonsense, I will seek legal recourse.

This blog is for one purpose. It is to promote and support my business — that business is Transcription. It takes hours upon hours to create a website. If you want to advertise your products; create your own website! I don’t discuss politics; I don’t discuss ridiculous conspiracy theories or debunked medical treatments for COVID, and I am thoroughly repulsed by smut that some cretins think that that is a topic that would be discussed here. Just what part of “This is a transcription-based platform” that you don’t understand and can’t get through your thick skulls. Consider yourselves warned!!

If you are not going to direct your content to the relevancy of the topic, please just move on!

YOU NEED TO WORK TO BE SUCCESSFUL; JUST ENJOY THE WORK YOU DO: Why I Chose Transcription

Hi Friends,
        That’s right, everybody. There is no golden parachute waiting to transport you to easy wealth and continued prosperity. One must work to earn a living. That is just the way it is and has always been and how it will always be. That tidbit aside, I trust that you all had a wonderful and fun weekend. As things begin to reopen, and we begin to approach some semblance of normalcy, it is time to start reconnecting with people again and start to think about planning outings to favorite haunts.   It is also a time to reflect on all matters financial and business/employment related.  Perhaps you may have found some peace and tranquility with being at home. We hear all the time about people making a good living from the comfort of their own home. I am proud and excited to say that I count myself amongst that privileged group.  While I am not wealthy and raking in tons of dough, I am making a comfortable living.
     Also, many of you may have found that there is peace and less stress working from home and not having to deal with commuting. Since I retired from my teaching career, I have been making income from the comfort and convenience of home. I can wear my carpet slippers (haha, we have tile and hardwood, but hey, carpet slippers are comfy) and pj’s if I wish. My morning commute consists of walking to my fridge and coffee machine, and then moseying on down the hall to my home-office where I check my email and catch some news while having coffee. Next, I like to review my previous transcripts, and then settle in on the day’s audio or video transcriptions that I have scheduled for the day’s work.
     I do need to follow a schedule, but while I find it important to have a set number of items such as  work, home-related tasks, shopping, and recreation to complete, I do keep the schedule flexible. Of course, one cannot discount the benefits of being able to tailor your work schedule around the activities that you wish to engage in. I can tell you that that is one of the perks that I really love. For example, tomorrow my wife and I are having a bbq lunch with some friends at Lucille’s Smoke House, so I will probably sleep in a bit longer than usual.  Then I’ll come home and finish a client’s file, and then either blog a bit if I feel like it, or catch a ball game on TV.  Since this particular  that I am currently working on  is worth a bit over $200, I am choosing to take the afternoon after lunch (how is that for an alliteration?) for work and calling it a day.
     Now, not every day is like this, some days I will transcribe all day. The point is, I choose when I want to work. I schedule my work around what I want to do. So long as I am meeting deadlines and obligations to my clients, I decide when and how much I want to work. The work isn’t always easy; you have to put in the time and effort like anything worthwhile and legitimate, but it sure is nice to do so on your own terms, from the comfort of home, and not having the need to navigate traffic-clogged roads and freeways.
     While I will not become fabulously wealthy, I am earning a comfortable living and not worrying about the bills, debt, or not having enough money to enjoy life. I get to work from the comfort and convenience of home; I am able to be home to be with my wife who is battling MS, and though I do need to work and put in the time to do so, I get to set my own schedule. If you are looking for that type of freedom and convenience, this may be something you might want to look into transcription, either legal or general or both,  for yourself.  And, right now, is the best time to do it because Transcribe Anywhere, the organization where I received my training and certification, is offering their courses at a 20% discount, but only until May 31. They have rolled back the price on tuition by $298.  Of course, before you lay out any money for tuition, you are strongly encouraged to enroll in the free 7-lesson Mini-Course. This will allow you to explore this field and find out if it is a good fit for you.  There you can comfortably, and without any obligation or strong-arming, decide for yourself if this is suitable for you. What do you have to lose by exploring this free introductory course? I found it interesting, enjoyable, and I really appreciated the fact that I was not being pressured.
     So, if you want to become a transcriptionist, then you want to set yourself up for success. Like any career that is legitimate, you have to be willing to train, work diligently, be patient and disciplined, and be realistic. Nobody is going to hand you six figures for scratching out a few words. You will need to get certified and trained to be successful. You most likely will not become fabulously wealthy, but if you are willing to do the work and work diligently, be disciplined and realistic, then you can make a very good living on your own terms with something that is your very own. You don’t have to put up thousands or ten-hundreds of thousands to start a business nor do you have to worry about high overhead costs. If you wish to explore on your own terms and at your own pace this fascinating, growing, time-proven, and legitimate business of transcription, then click on the link below. There is not obligation; there is no cost; there is no risk. If you decide after taking the free seven-lesson mini-course that transcription is not right for you, then try virtual bookkeeping or maybe virtual assistant, customer service, etc. However, and this is what I hope for you, is that you find what I found, and that is transcription being a great fit and the right choice for you. Then you can be sure you have made an informed choice before plunking down money on training and certification. So, I encourage you to give it a try.  I have provided the link right below my sign-off. Please, by all means, enjoy your week.
Best wishes,

OUR VALUES: How a TA Transcriptionist Proofs Society’s Daily Transcript

I first want to reiterate my stance that I do not delve into the political arena.  Remember the maxim that is one of the pillars of my business, my profession, and one is a central tenant of my being: What is between you and I remains between just us: everybody else is on a need-to-know basis, and they don’t need to know.  I did mention at that end of my last blog that I would next write about my daily schedule, a sort of, “A day in the Life of a Transcriptionist”-themed blog. That topic will be the theme of an upcoming blog, but due to extenuating circumstances, I have put that on hold as I really want to make it top-notch in quality with pictures, routines, and interesting content.  Therefore, I want to expound upon the important values that we as transcriptionist should adhere to, and the values that should be if the bedrock-variety foundational to our society.  Today I am going to introduce my next series. Hopefully, after this series, I will have my ducks in a row as it comes to my blog on, “A Day in the Life of a Transcriptionist.”  In the light of what is transpiring in our politics; our daily lives; in the professional world. and with the mores of society as a whole, I wanted to delve into the opportunities that we have in our profession of transcription to make a real difference and hopefully to foment positive change.

One of the most enjoyable writing activities I loved  teaching and exploring with my students was the writing of acrostic poetry. It is a fun way to improve one’s creativity with words and an efficient means to meld both creativity and thematic structure while stating a personal philosophy and a way of looking at things. I have come up with an acrostic which will be the basis for the theme of this series of blogs. I did mention in my previous blog that I would be presenting an article about my daily routine, but as I have had extenuating events that have slowed me getting my house and my home office in the format that I want, I am going to delay that article for a couple of weeks. So, today I will begin a new series, and it will be called Incredible. I am using this word as an acrostic so that each letter represents a particular value that is important to transcriptionists and the values that we hold sacrosanct in our profession.  I chose Incredible because the word transcription is an incredible career and industry. You get the opportunity to get paid to learn and experience new knowledge and subject material.  It has an incredible impact on many other industries, and we as transcriptionists have an incredible opportunity to promote positive change. Ghandi said, “You must be the change you want to see in the world.”  We can do our part as transcriptionists to do this by living the change

This article introduces a new series and will be presented as an acrostic that introduces each value.  Each subsequent article will then delve deeper into each value and how it applies to the art of transcription and the life of a transcriptionist. Today, I will introduce the series of blog topics. Each blog will be shorter than normal, or I might combine two of the lettered values.  Anyway, I will begin the series with an brief introduction and overview of the series.

I – Integrity.  You need to keep your promises, meet your obligations to your clients, operate with fair and honest business practices, and you need to uphold and guard the reputation of your TA family and the transcription industry.  Show gratitude for the help colleagues give you and be willing to do the same when colleagues need it.

N – Nuance.  We can’t change the spoken word as at the heart of transcription you write what is said and; what you heard. Therefore, we make sure that with homophones and homographs that the right spelling and correct word is chosen, and we help to give voice and the intended nuance to the text by using solid, fundamental, and creative use of punctuation.

C- Confidentiality.  Many clients are trusting us to keep audio and/or video content confidential and often require disclosure agreements.  We are precluded by both ethics and law from divulging information to others.  Confidentiality is sacrosanct in our industry.  A great deal of trust is placed upon us.

R-Research and Review.  Often times we may not have heard about a particular location, landmark, building, city, village, invention, scientific term, trade deals, a particular historical event, a person, yet we are tasked with spelling and punctuating these terms correctly and in a professional manner.  It is imperative that we are good and efficient researchers. We also review our transcripts for errors and completeness, and compare our written transcript by reading it one last time while listening to the audio.

E – Ethics.  We don’t cut corners or short-change or clients. They pay an agreed upon price for services rendered, or we have contractual agreements with a transcription company and are obligated to meet those obligations.  We do not use text, trade secrets that we hear and learn about during the course of a transcription assignment to benefit monetarily, steal intellectual property, or brag, and certainly we do not gossip to others about what we learned. We are fair; we don’t poach clients from transcription companies, and we don’t undercut our colleagues or underprice our services to where it affects the ability for our colleagues to make a comfortable and honest living.  In addition, we have an obligation and responsibility to our colleagues and mentors to protect the reputation of our industry and the TA name.

D – Discipline.  It takes an incredible amount of discipline to make your home-based transcription business succeed.  You should have realistic goals and a plan on how to achieve those goals.  You have to be able to sit and concentrate on your work.  Have a schedule and stick to it, but also do so creatively so that you can also enjoy the freedom of being your own boss.  Freedom and flexibility do not have to be diametrically opposed to discipline.  Practicing these values correctly, they will support each other. Set your schedule with preordained times to work, have breaks, go places, for recreation, for eating and relaxing. Find what works for you, but then follow that religiously.  By all means, it is important to avoid that demon whose name is Procrastination.  Be clean with your workspace, be very organized, and have a daily plan of action and stick to it.

I – Income.  This is something we all think about, dream about, and certainly is one of the key motivators.  Let’s face it, we have bills to pay, mouths to feed, and our future to save for.  Let’s not make it our number one priority, however.  We are not hedge fund managers. If we have integrity, discipline, practice proper ethics, the income will grow and take care of itself, most often to a greater degree than if that was our only focus.  Set reasonable prices and fees, yet avoid setting below-market ones as that devalues the market, cheapens our profession, and cheats yourself out of your hard earned dollar. Again, be fair in your pricing but set them a little bit higher. Many of our potential clients are well off and expect to pay for professional services a professional wage.  Truth be told, they become suspicious or concerned when prices are too low figuring that a transcriptionist is poorly trained, untalented, or not serious about their profession.  Pricing yourself too low is counterproductive.

B – Build.  You must build your business and work diligently at it.  Success just doesn’t happen, it must be earned. Build to gain experience; build your client base; build your confidence; build a business that you can be proud of and enjoy doing. Also, don’t forget to build a system of contacts and referrals as that will help to sustain your business during times of low ebb, and it will help to continue building it during times of prosperity.

L – Love.  Love what you are doing, otherwise why do it? Have a love of words and a love of language. Love to learn, because you have a tremendous opportunity to learn as a transcriptionist. Love what there is out there to learn about. Love being curious.  Love improving your skills and business acumen and certainly while being serious about your work, love thinking about it as an adventure to be enjoyed and treasured. Love and respect your colleagues, clients, and your own determination, fortitude, and achievements.

E – Enthusiasm.  Start each day with a generous dose of enthusiasm.  Have enthusiasm for life; for relationships; for your freedom; for your opportunities, and certainly have enthusiasm for your work as a transcriptionist.  Find all the positive attributes for transcription and your business, of which there are many, and focus on them. Enjoy what you are doing,  and as you ethusiastically, professionally, and ethically grow your business, have enthusiasm for the fact that you are helping others succeed in theirs.

As transcriptionists, we have an opportunity to make a difference in society.  By demonstrating and promoting professionalism, a strong work ethic, care for our clients, and most importantly, integrity, we are putting our stamp of endorsement on these important bedrock values.  We can do our part to change the world by being that change.

I love this new career of mine as a general transcriptionist. I have the freedom to set my own schedule, I get to stay home with my wife, I get paid to learn new and interesting knowledge, and I can see my efforts bearing fruit.  I am part of a fantastic and talented TA family where we support one another and continue to learn. I am forever grateful to have found Transcribe Anywhere, and to have received the valuable mentorship of Janet and Marsha, two individuals who epitomize the values I have expounded upon. Their hard work, innovative curriculum based on solid pedagogue, and the human investment they put into the success of their students and graduates cannot be priced. I now have the tools to be successful and make a comfortable living, on my own terms, as a transcriptionist. It is now up to me to make it work and grow my business. It is a journey, that while takes work, focus, and discipline, is one of adventure and wonder and chock full of opportunity.  I sincerely hope that you would consider transcription for yourself. If you have the sincere desire, are willing to work hard, you don’t expect instant gratification and the promise of easy wealth, and have the perseverance necessary to make transcription your choice for business, then I invite you to click on the live link and find out if transcription is right for you. If you do take that step, promise me that you will give it a fair shot and finish the free mini-course.

https://www.transcribeanywhere.com/a/15058/PnLxY5jT

The Art of Transcription, Part 3

Hello, my friends. I trust that you are all well and have had a great week since we last shared our thoughts about this magnificent art called Transcription. Though I will continue to blog and opine often on it, this is the third and final installment in the series, “The Art of Transcription.” My next blog will be a spotlight on my typical day and routine and will be titled, “A Day in the Life of a Home-Based General Transcriptionist.” I will add pictures to spice it up a bit more, and will expound upon a typical day. I will make it informative, whimsical, fun, and hopefully, if you are not already in the business, convince some of you to seriously consider this wonderful career for yourself. Okay, so as not to wander off tangent here, I will get back on track and continue with the Art of Transcription. Finally, let’s see about giving this art its sense of color.

When one applies color to a piece of visual art, it is important not to disturb or change any facet of the foundation. This precept segues perfectly as it forms a perfect analogy with the art of transcription. Let’s harken back to the meaning of transcription which is turning the spoken word into the written word. That is its fundamental construct. You cannot change the wording. We write it as it is spoken, there are no liberties, per se, to that precept. It certainly is no secret that people tend to speak not as if they were reading or reciting a grammar book, but rather in a natural and spontaneous manner in which, at that particular moment in time, best conveys their desired message or thoughts. They don’t necessarily stop and ponder upon the CMOS as they formulate their responses. How many of us do? The spoken word is organic; it is in the moment; it doesn’t announce punctuation marks. Anyway, this is where we as transcriptionists practice our art. We punctuate; we correctly spell; we apply the correct choice of homographs and homophones; we research. With these colors on our palette, we commence on our artistic endeavor.

Okay, the story is about, “A Day in the Life of Tommy.” Tommy lives with his siblings and parents in Anytown, USA. He attends Acme Elementary School where he is a fifth-grade GATE student. After typing the transcript, we read, “Let’s eat mom,” and we realize that this is not a story about ravenous, cannibalistic offspring. So, we go to our palette, and then touch it up with some punctuation. So, now it reads, “Let’s eat, Mom,” which helps us to convey the speakers intended meaning that the children are excited about the meal that she is about to serve them. Most importantly, we did not change the spoken word one iota; we simply added proper punctuation. Perhaps Mom is bent on exacting some sort of revenge as she announces, “Okay, dinner starts with a bowl of pee soup.” Well, we all know that mothers are forgiving people and would not serve her children such unappetizing fare. Therefore, we dip again into our palette — not our palate, thankfully — and apply some spelling and word choice and “voila!” Mom says, “Dinner starts with a bowl of pea soup.” The order of words remains the same. At that most interesting dinner table, Dad decides to change up the subject when he inquires of Tommy, “Well, son, did you get the chance to ask Mister Schmuckszi buttergraze at school today?” Well, LOL, instead of Tommy wondering if Mom gave Dad something extra in his drink, we went back to our palette and applied some internet research and looked up his school in Anytown, whereupon, we found a fifth-grade GATE teacher named Mr. Smoltz. Tommy is a good student, so we infer that “buttergraze” has nothing to do with all things bovine. Keeping in mind that the context tells us about education and a school, it makes sense that “graze” must be “grades”. But, butter grades? Is Dad a dairy farmer at market? After listening to that on the file repetitively, we hear “about your”. So, we now have, “Well, son, did you have a chance to ask Mister Smoltz about your grades today?” Venture to say that makes a bit more sense. So, there you have it, a finished canvas. You used the transcriptionist’s palette to turn the art of the spoken word into the written. No words were changed, deleted, or added. You simply punctuated, spelled properly and made the correct word choices, and you researched for background and context. And by doing so, you have brought life and the appropriate meaning to your transcript, and you have allowed the speaker’s message to be heard by his/her intended audience. That, my friends, is the Art of Transcription, and why it truly is an art.

It is also exactly why transcription is a great fit for any artist, be that artist a painter, sculptor, or musician. Against the background of this pandemic, many of you may be struggling with a way to make a living. Perhaps you, as many in the Arts industry are, are gig-type workers. I, myself, am a part-time church organist. And, as churches have been closed to in-person services, there is no opportunity for play and pay. Transcription is a wonderful choice. It is interesting; it gives an artist flexibility of schedule; it allows an artist another avenue to ply their talents, and it allows you to connect with others and make a difference in their lives. I really enjoy it. I like the challenge of the art. I also like that constraint is freedom and a prompt to be creative. In other words, we are constrained by the fact that we can’t change words and how they are said, but we create by using the transcriptionist’s palette and give freedom to allow those words to convey their intended message and meaning. That, in and of itself, is fascinating.

We are all artists in our own way. We all create; we all have constraints; we all love freedom; we all love color and meaning; we all wish to contribute. The Art of Transcription is the ultimate vehicle for that quest. So, why not ply those artistic skills? Transcribe Anywhere is the best place to acquire those skills and tools to start your endeavors. You not only receive first-rate training, instruction, and practice in the art, you become part of a family of transcriptionists. And, while under the umbrella and support of the organization, are also fully independent contractors and free to chart your own future and establish your own home-based enterprise. And what a family it is. Knowledgeable people, many with years of experience who are truly interested in your success and will lend a willing hand to help you succeed. I continue to feel blessed and privileged to be a part of the Transcribe Anywhere family and look forward to a long and successful future in my own home-based business. Try out Transcribe Anywhere’s free Seven-Lesson Mini Course to see if transcription is right for you. You have nothing to lose, so you may as well find out what this innovative and interesting program is all about. You will not regret it. Click on the live link below and explore what it is all about.

https://www.transcribeanywhere.com/a/15058/PnLxY5jT

 

The Art of Transcription, Part 2

Hi everyone, and welcome back. Today I continue my eclectic journey through the blogosphere, and I am thrilled to have you jumping onboard to share this next stop along this quest. Towards the end of my first blog, I alluded to the field of transcription of which I am proudly a part of and which I am passionate about. In my second blog I defined transcription and explained as to why it is not just merely an industry and career field, but I framed it as an art form. I sought to explain what it is, the role and the responsibilities of a transcriptionist, and the opportunities and great rewards that it offers. In this blog, which is the second in a series of three in “The Art of Transcription,” I feel that I need to let you know how I discovered this life-changing and fulfilling career, how and where I received my training, and why I chose transcription for myself. Also, I will give you the skinny on where I currently am on this adventure. So, get comfortable, sit back, and let’s continue this journey.

I know that I have told everyone that I had an enjoyable and fruitful 30-year career as an elementary school teacher, and I did. I most certainly had the honor and privilege to teach and mentor hundreds of students over the course of three decades. It will always be an important part of my life. That said, the old adage that life is about change rings true. Our needs change; people change; work conditions change; circumstances change. We have to adapt and be adaptable. In addition to my bachelor’s degree, I did graduate work in Language Arts and Curriculum and Instruction. 30 years is a long span of time, and due to mandates, growing older, workplace politics, and the ever-expanding amount of paperwork — little having to do with actual teaching – I decided to retire in June of 2018. I also found that I wanted more time to be at home with my wife. So, I needed a career that I was interested in; that I had the skill set and experience for, and one that I could establish as a home-based business. Telling you all that the internet is rife with scams and get-rich-quick schemes is akin to preaching to the choir, so I did what I had always done as an educator, I did my research.

After searching for something that sounded interesting, viable, and that had a future with potential for growth, I settled on two possibilities: virtual bookkeeping, and transcription. Through further investigation and research of those two choices, I settled on transcription. I felt that not only did it sound intriguing, but that it was the perfect fit for my skillset, one in which I had the background and aptitude for. When I discovered, enrolled in, and watched Transcribe Anywhere’s free online course in General Transcription: Theory and Practice, I was immediately sold. Not only was it a tremendous value, but it was comprehensive and pedagogically sound; it was certified by AAERT; it was highly endorsed by reputable companies in the industry, and it has a sterling reputation within the transcription industry.  The bedrock and foundational value of truth really struck a chord with me when they did not promise or even hint at the ubiquitous memes of get-rich-quick or the never-ending promises of easy wealth. Rather, they made clear that transcription is a lot of work, and that learning and training in transcription would take time, effort, and dedication. However, if you were willing to put in the time and effort, exercise self-discipline, and work diligently in the course, you would acquire the skills and knowledge to build a business and have a career where you could make a successful living. In other words, everything promoted was based in reality and truth. That is priceless as far as I am concerned. I have not regretted one minute of my decision to enroll in the General Transcription: Theory & Practice course. It absolutely delivered on its promise. I highly, and without reservation, recommend it to anyone who is interested in owning a home-based career.

Transcribe Anywhere (TA) not only offers a course in general transcription, but TA also offers the industry-standard course in the field of legal transcription, Legal Transcription: Theory & Practice. Transcribe Anywhere is not simply just an online course in transcription. Rather, it is a multi-faceted organization that is, simultaneously, education; technology; organization; industry; business; family. What I mean is that, while it is an online course, it is much more than that. It is an organization that is both professional and familial. Transcribe Anywhere is a family; we are students, graduates, independent contractors, fellow transcriptionists who support one another. We are a career field with some of us having our own clients; some of us working as independent contractors for companies, and many of us in a hybrid-type model: working for a transcription company and having a few private clients. We are taught and mentored by two of the very best in the business: Our founder and owner, Janet Shaughnessy and TA’s Director of Education, Marsha Schnipper.  Janet is the owner not only of the Transcribe Anywhere organization, but of Zoom Transcription Services, with decades of experience in the industry. Her vision; her creativity; her skill and experience; her passion for the industry have set the standard for education and training in the field of transcription.  Marsha, who has a career background as an educator, is also a practicing and experienced transcriptionist.  Her pedagogical knowledge and skills provide the aspiring transcriptionist a solid foundation of theory and knowledge. That is combined with a thorough and comprehensive structure of practice dictations organized into units that build upon and reinforce the requisite practical skills to provide the tools for student success. The courses are all-inclusive, providing tools such as templates and guides, links to discounted software and hardware, first-rate, industry-standard education and training, and second-to-none support and mentorship. Oh, and this is so important and exciting: TA is family – teachers and mentors, graduates, and students. We have a Facebook group where we can ask questions, share experiences in the industry, cement a sense of camaraderie, advise, and enjoy the online company of one another. TA provides lifetime support for each and everyone of its students and graduates. There really is nothing like it. It is the best investment I have made in my 60 years upon this rock, Earth, that we all call home. If –and I hope you do — you aspire to a home-based career in transcription, it is essential that you get your start through Transcribe Anywhere. Check it out by clicking on the tag at the bottom of this blog article.

Since I graduated last November, I have established a hybrid model of business. I have two distinguished companies that I contract with and, so far, one private client and am on the verge of landing a second. I am not rolling in dough, but while I am perfecting my craft, I am pulling in a good income right from the comfort of my own home, with the best coffee, and shortest commute — as in feet instead of miles – one could ask for. Oh, did I say that my coffee is a tax write-off? More about that in my next blog. Anyway, I am excited about my future in this business, I am learning interesting things as I transcribe, and I enjoy the work and the freedom it provides. And, best of all, it is an expanding field chocked full of opportunity and growth.

Well, thank you for visiting my website and reading my blog. My next blog article will be a continuation of “The Art of Transcription” series. Look for it some time within the next couple of weeks. Meanwhile, please click on the tag below and check it out. You have nothing to lose doing so and much to gain. Most of all, enjoy what you do; do it well; do it passionately; make a difference in the world around you.

 

For those of you considering a great home-based career in transcription, here is a link to TranscribeAnywhere’s free General Transcription Mini Course. It is fabulous and is what sold me on the program. It is well worth your time.

https://www.transcribeanywhere.com/a/15058/PnLxY5jT

The Art of Transcription, Part 1

So, is it really art? If so, is it visual art of performing art? And what do you mean when you state, “The Art of Transcription,” anyway? Well, I suppose, that just depends on what you consider “Art” and how you would define it. Are you looking for the denotation or the connotation of the word? Are you looking for its mimesis? expression? form? Or it could simply be, “The skill of…” or more poetically, “There’s great skill in doing that thing.” Maybe it is a combination of some of those elements. Simply put, transcription means, “Turning the spoken word into the written word.” So, if you want, let’s play at being an etymologist for a brief moment. We could say, “Transcription is the process of turning the spoken word, or speech, into the written word, or text.” We could make it sound more dramatic, “There’s great skill in turning that which is spoken into that which is written.” Sounds more Shakespearian, no? Well, to be truthful, it is all of those things. But it is something more basic, too. As we know it, as a profession, it simply is writing (or typing) spoken words — be it a Q&A, interview, vlog, podcast, sermon, conference, lecture, or any other form of spoken words from audio and video files — into a written document. In that way, too, it most certainly is an art.

All pontificating aside, I want to talk to you about transcription. Briefly, I want touch on what are the types of transcription, why I chose it as a profession, what does it require of an individual to be successful in this career field, and how one sets out to become a transcriptionist — BTW, it is a growing field, and the demand for transcription is surging — It could even be something that you might just be interested in for yourself. Oh yeah, well anyway, let’s get started, shall we?

Transcription, as a profession, is just what I stated in my opening paragraph. To define it succinctly, it is writing down in a document exactly what you hear spoken to you as it was spoken. You are not really at liberty to change words or even the order of the words spoken. Remember, most people do not talk as if they are walking, breathing grammar books. The everyday vernacular of people varies greatly in sentence structure and syntax.

That said, a transcriptionist’s job is to help a written document to convey the intended meaning and give voice to the speaker through the correct and appropriate application of punctuation, using the right word choices – particularly with homophones and homographs — and making sure terms and jargon are spelled correctly, and if there are multiple speakers, to make sure the speakers are correctly identified. To do that is, indeed, an art — in form, mimesis, expression and, of course, value. And it certainly is a demonstration of the great skill of turning the spoken into the written.

Now, transcription can be formulaic. Though you don’t change what is said in wording or structure, there are two major styles of transcription conventions: standard verbatim and strict verbatim. With standard verbatim, you omit the false starts, stutters, all the uh’s and um’s, and change informal vernacular terms like “gonna” and “wanna” to “going to” and “want to”. For strict verbatim, you generally don’t clean up any vernaculars, though sometimes a client may wish for some adjustments to strict verbatim. Of course, these terms are used by transcriptionists in the field of transcription so they may be a bit jargony for those in other career fields. However, as I always like to say, “Learn something new every day.” Maybe I am piquing your interest in the Art of Transcription? Hopefully I will by the end of this blog, yes?

Just as there are specialties in the career fields of medicine, law, engineering, and teaching, so is it in the industry of transcription as well. There are three main categories of transcription: general, legal, and medical. Medical transcription is the area of transcription that is on the decline and falls victim to the advances of technology and was the one area of transcription that could somewhat be supplanted by artificial intelligence technology. However, both legal and general transcription are in high demand, and actually, the advancement of technology is causing an exponential need for human transcription. That is because these two types of transcription are dependent upon nuance, voice, word choice, and of course, punctuation. All of which AI cannot achieve with any real semblance of accuracy. If you are skeptical, okay, then watch an entire newscast on TV with close captioning turned on. You will soon notice puzzling and often hilarious misspellings, syntax errors, and mistakes in word choice and usage. The same goes with AI-generated transcripts. Oh, and don’t get me started on those auto-generated transcripts that YouTube creates. LOL As one who has a YouTuber client, I can attest to the fact that those are not at all accurate. By the time, and if, artificial intelligence gets to the point that it can distinguish human nuance, it will probably conquer us due to our flaws. At that point, hypothetically speaking, it wouldn’t matter anyway.

Now, back to reality. If you are willing to put in the work, get proper and appropriate training, and keep sacrosanct the foundational value of confidentiality, transcription is a tremendously appealing and meaningful industry chocked-full of potential and the opportunity for personal and professional growth. Along with the fact that my background as a teacher and educator, the reasons as articulated in this blog article so far are amongst the motivators that lead me to this fascinating occupation as I searched for my perfect post-retirement career. While I have an artistic nature, being a classically trained organist, I am also a realist. I am not so naïve to think that I can become rich simply through buying into the plethora of the online promise perpetrators that propagate the internet, but I know with my work ethic, determination, and love of language that I can make a comfortable living as a transcriptionist. For now, I am getting established in the specialty of general transcription. Later on, I may add legal transcription to my toolbox as it is a tremendously appealing vocation as well. Anyhow, in addition to being able to support myself from the creature comforts of home, I am my own boss; set my own hours; decide how much I earn. I can write off my home office, supplies, advertising costs, telephone, printer, other work-related expenses, and even my coffee and snack costs, against my taxes. In addition, I pay far less for gas, vehicle maintenance, clothing expenses, lunches, and have no commute time other than the time it takes to amble from my bedroom or kitchen to my den/home office. Due to my years of experience as a teacher, I made a good living. Now, when I subtract all the expenses as articulated above, combined with the at-home benefits, I pretty much maintain the same standard of living, and all on my own terms. Yes, I made the right choice for myself. Perhaps it is a choice you might want to consider?

(End of Part 1)

For those of you considering a great home-based career in transcription, here is a link to TranscribeAnywhere’s free General Transcription Mini Course. It is fabulous and is what sold me on the program. It is well worth your time.

https://www.transcribeanywhere.com/a/15058/PnLxY5jT

On a Need-to-Know Basis

Hello, and thank you for visiting my site and taking the time to read my first blog. As I pondered upon a theme, I came to the realization that maybe I just should step outside of my comfort zone and simply wing it for today. I have been told that I am a good extemporaneous writer; I will leave it for you to decide that for today.

I do have a lot of ideas, so I will touch upon a hodgepodge of topics, not necessarily delving into any one of them with depth and completeness, but perhaps just as an overview and exploration of topics that are of interest, have practicality, and can connect on a personal level. As a transcriptionist I often am privy to information and details where it is expected that I maintain absolute discretion and confidentiality for my clients. It is a legal obligation and requirement, but also it is one of both a moral and ethical consideration. I will address these very important precepts today and how it ties into my philosophy on that topic.

I do enjoy writing, and I would be a bit disingenuous to imply that my blogs will not have some level of self-interest, that being to attract potential clients and promote my business, but also to connect with you, to promote discourse, create interest, and to indulge my appetite for writing. As to any particular theme that I want to concentrate on, in short, there will not be one. Rather, I will feature a variety of topics and themes in the realms of transcription, music, cooking, sometimes on societal issues, education, philosophy, and such. It will be an eclectic mix.

So, here I go with the launch of my first blog.  Oh, there will be other areas of interest, but, out of personal preference and my long-held philosophy on the topic, I will not delve into or opine upon the specter of politics. The only aspect of politics I will discuss will be discussed on my blog today, and I will expound upon the reasons why I will not discuss it from here on out. Well, anyway, time to get started on this, my first blog.

Okay, first things first. My favorite philosophical motto is, as relating to all things personal, confidential, and private: “Everybody else is on a need-to-know-basis and they don’t need to know!” That is my philosophy when dealing with clients and customers when it comes to confidentiality, deals, and any other business arrangements. I used these very words starting 35 years ago when I began my career as a teacher conducting parent-teacher conferences. As it happens, it is also applicable to all things political where I am concerned.

Let me be succinct in what I mean on both a personal and professional level; I do not discuss politics with people, particularly with family and friends and certainly not clients! The only person who knows my political beliefs and can who can carry on a political discourse with me on this rather abhorrent topic, is the most important and beloved person in my life, my soulmate — my dear wife. Everyone else is on a need-to-know basis as to my political opinions, and yes, you guessed it, they don’t need to know! And, pray tell, why is that? Here is just an inkling why. One, I am not an ideologue; I am nuanced; I eschew labels; I really don’t like or enjoy politics. I enjoy history, very much so, and there is the historical aspect of politics that underlies much of history, but politics in and of itself, be it governmental, organizational, or personal, is not a theme that I enjoy discussing and expounding upon with others.

Everybody has an opinion; they have a right to that opinion; I have a right to mine. And what mine are, sans my wife, are between myself and myself. They are sacrosanct. Therefore, everybody else will be on a need-to-know basis and they don’t need to know. Second, in my mind — and yes, that is an opinion — politics, sadly, tend to be so polarizing and destructive to our personal relationships.

It has devolved into an “Us versus Them” dichotomy. It tears friends and family apart, produces no winners, changes no minds, adds nothing in the way of long-term contributions to relationships, and creates hurt, divisiveness, anger, and sorrow where there should be joy, pleasure in company and companionship, and growth in relationship, and contentment of enjoying socialization with those closest and most important to us. And for what? For the beliefs, often self-serving interests, and demagoguery of distant politicians that have no personal connections to you and I?

Are you all onboard and comfortable with the very thought of your most important and consequential relationships being tainted by a particular political school of thought and someone’s insistence on adhering to it? Really? Lastly, why are all the debates – if one can use that noble term – shifted now to a paradigm of conservative versus liberal? What about Moderates? Why are they never given a thought or mention anymore? Oh, well, that is my soapbox stump speech; that is the extent of political discourse that will flow forth from my quill. I will, of course, encourage you to opine in the Comment section of each blog as I would love feedback and personal connection.

To wrap up my first blog, I want to again thank you for visiting and reading. I hope you enjoyed my pontification. As to the topic of my next blog? It will be about, you guessed it,  the Art of Transcription. I will discuss the art of turning the spoken word in to the written word, I will expound upon why I decided to embark upon that field for my post-retirement career, the importance of my motto in our industry, and I will lay out just how transcription can be of a benefit to you. I won’t pretend that there is not an aspect of self-interest in my next topic because, to be honest, there is. But transcription is more than that to me. I like to see others succeed, and I derive satisfaction and joy in that.

That said, and before I leap off on another tangent, I am looking to publish my next blog very soon. When? Well, you are on a need-to-know basis and, well, You NEED To Know. I am aiming for Monday, February 22. So, please check back. Again, while you are here, feel free to opine below in the Comment section as I’d like to know. Just remember not to make it a forum for your political opinions and beliefs, but rather comment on the article itself, because as to your politics, I am on a need-to-know basis, and I don’t need to know.

EJ

For those of you considering a great home-based career in transcription, here is a link to TranscribeAnywhere’s free General Transcription Mini Course. It is fabulous and is what sold me on the program. It is well worth your time.

https://www.transcribeanywhere.com/a/15058/PnLxY5jT