Do you need a transcript of a YouTube video’s content?
If you’re like me, when you’re watching a YouTube video for educational purposes, you’d like to keep notes of the important points. Yes, you could just take notes while watching (and I sometimes do), but other times, I’m not able to (or motivated to) take notes. But I still want the notes.
Well, there’s a solution to that. YouTube automatically generates transcripts of every video, which are accessible to everyone. To display the transcript, just click on the “…” button below the video in YouTube, as shown here:
Then, click on “Show Transcript”, and the transcript of the video is displayed like so:
Note that, you can click anywhere in the transcript, and the video will jump to that specific spot. This is particularly useful when you know the video creator talks about a certain topic somewhere in the (potentially very long) video, and you don’t want to listen to the whole video again. You can actually search within the transcript for a particular word or phrase, and jump right to it. Just press CTRL-F (on Windows), then type in your keyword, and press Enter. (If your search phrase occurs more than once in the transcript, every occurrence is highlighted, although there seems to be a glitch where sometimes the “next” occurrence doesn’t scroll into view as you repeatedly press Enter. You’ll need to watch for the timestamp, then manually drag the timeline below the video to that time mark yourself.)
So, now to capture the transcript content. Just click in the Transcript window, drag and scroll to the bottom, and CTRL-C (Windows) to copy the entire contents, then paste it into your favorite text editor.
How can I remove the timestamps from the YouTube Transcript?
You probably don’t want those timestamps, or those extra spaces, in your transcript. So, how to remove the timestamps?
Of course, there’s an app for that. It’s not pretty, but it works perfectly.
Here’s the app:
Just paste your timestamped text into the left window (1), click on the “Do the job!” button (2), and your cleaned-up transcript appears in the window on the right (3). Copy it and paste it into your favorite text editor, and edit as you see fit!