Closed captioning glitch

Alice Faber faber at HASKINS.YALE.EDU
Tue Jan 3 18:11:36 UTC 2012

On 1/3/12 12:21 PM, Joel S. Berson wrote:
> Seen in a closed caption on a WCVB Boston (channel 5) news broadcast
> last night, as the location of a news event:
> The announcer had said "Woburn."
> Presumably from "w/o burn", but I am unable to figure out how "w/o"
> could have been seen, or how "without" could have been heard.  The
> only explanation I can hypothesize is that the captioning person (or
> thing) typed "WOBURN" and a spell-checking thing (exorcist?)
> corrected that to WITHOUTBURN (without an internal space).

It's an autocorrect type thing. The captioner presumably was using one
of those CART machines (sort of like a courtroom transcriber uses). As
far as I can tell (one of the blogs I regularly follow is by someone who
does captioning for classes and public lectures), users preload these
machines with abbreviations and the like that are auto-expanded. "wo"
for "without" would make perfect sense as a pre-load.

Alice Faber                                    faber at
Haskins Laboratories                           tel: (203) 865-6163 x258
New Haven, CT 06511 USA                        fax (203) 865-8963

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