Wednesday, December 31, 2014

How to Safely Store Skype Videos and Audio Recordings

A few weeks we received a request from Yvonne M., a PhD Candidate in UCLA University.We have been transcribing thesis research interviews for Yvonne, and he wanted to know if there was a way to store his Doctoral research interviews that he had conducted this year. We bring this article as a useful guide for university students and other people in need of the same.

Safe storage of video and audio content is a growing concern in today's internet-moved society. Many businesses, coaches, researchers, consultants and Podcasters conduct numerous conversation calls, focus groups, seminars and business research interviews using tools such as Skype videos. These audio and video conversations are usually recorded, and some of them might have not only very important, but also confidential content. Either way, this material must be properly stored so that it remains available for as long as needed, with easy access to all those allowed to use it. How can people safely store these files?

Commonly Used Methodologies For Digitally Storing Skype Audio And Video Calls

1. Store The Files On The Cloud
Online Storage Site
 Cloud storage is one of the first methodologies that come to mind. Storage services such as Dropbox and Sendspace provide a very safe way to store audio and video calls. The files are completely available at any time of the day or week, and can be accessed from anywhere by anyone who needs to. The data centers where are the files are stored are accessible 24/7 and most of them have backup options. Thus you can be sure to never lose your digital files again.Google Drive and Sky Drive are two other very good options of cloud storage services. One of the disadvantages of this method is the higher cost to be paid per TB or the elevated price in the case of monthly subscriptions. 

2. Store In An External Hard Drive 

External HDD offers great portability
An external hard drive can be a great option to store video and audio files. Its advantages include the fact that it is portable and can be taken anywhere. Another thing to consider is the low cost associated with this kind of storage, that only gets cheaper as recent technologies evolve.

On the other hand, the hard drive doesn't provide complete accessibility to everyone that needs to use it, anytime and simultaneously, because the files are not available online.

It's also important to consider that the hard drive may suffer some kind of damage during its lifetime, and that can harm the files stored inside it.


3. Transcribe The Video Calls

Another possibility is to transcribe the video calls (conferences, interviews, podcasts, Web and audio calls, and then to save the transcript in a Word doc. Word files can be more easily stored, since they have a compact and much smaller size than video files. They are also easy to edit and format, and can be distributed with no difficulties via email or using proper sharing platforms.

This methodology, however, comes with an added cost, considering transcription rates can be higher than to simply store the files. Another con is the fact that you lose access to the actual video or audio, and therefore to any facial expressions or tone of voice that might be important depending on the context.

Now Coming to The Advantages Of Transcribing Heavy Digital Files:
A. A word transcript takes fraction of the storage space.
B. Readable text version is always faster to read rather than going through the whole video file instead.
C. Verbatim transcripts are useful for storing all parts of the conversation.
D: Transcription services rates per minute have become cheaper in the last few years owing to technological advances.

4. Use Youtube And Vimeo

An interesting option is to use video platforms such as Youtube and Vimeo. They can be a good alternative to store both audio and video files in a safe environment. The files can be uploaded into an account and everyone who needs access to them can simply log in and have complete access to the material available.

It's important to remember that these platforms allow the creation of both public and private accounts, so if the material is something that can't be exposed publicly there is no problem. This is especially significant when it comes to files that have a somewhat confidential content.

Important Digital Marketing and SEO Tip:  It can be very rewarding to get your audio and video Skype, Youtube and conference files transcribed. Not only the transcribed text part can be included in your blog thus adding to the website content, but also it helps in search engine rankings by allowing SE like Google, Bing and Yahoo to better crawl your site. 

5. Use Skydrive And Google Drive
Google Drive vs. Skydrive
Microsoft and Google provide two important cloud storage services, in the form of Google Drive and Skydrive. Other than safety and complete accessibility, another advantage is the integration with other online apps from both companies. Considering video storage, Google has a slight advantage because it allows people to not only store, but also to watch the video inside the platform.

Both services provide a small limit of free storage, but when it comes to video and audio calls on a professional level it probably won't be enough. In that case, the solution is to pay the monthly subscription, even though prices are often perceived as a little high. 

We recently came across this interesting article posted by PCMag a few months ago giving out interesting tips and tricks for using Google Drive. Click here to read the article. 

There are many options to safely store conversations and interviews conducted online using audio and video files. Whether on the cloud, using online video platforms, hard drives or even transcription methods, each alternative has its own advantages and disadvantages. 

It's important to determine what the best option is depending on the specific needs each situation has, considering the associated costs, accessibility and safety. It's also possible to combine more than one method, to make sure that, if one of them fails, there is still a backup. Whatever the final choice is, it's relieving to know that there are so many options available for this growing concern.

Some Suggested Readings:
SEO Tips for the new age Podcaster
Caption Transcription for Digital Marketing

Thanks for reading! Transcription Team
Twitter: @Alltranscript

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