Easiest way to subtitle and show your videos: Overstream + Google Video

September 17, 2007

(EDIT 8/28/2008: YouTube now supports the ability to import .srt and .sub files as well.)

Heads up: a new subtitled bonus video at the end of this blog post — this time, of my younger daughter walking for the first time!

Overstream logoFour months ago, I told you about Overstream, a website where you can easily add subtitles / captions to your videos. Several of you (including myself) mentioned that while this website was wonderful, there wasn’t a way to move your captioned videos from one site to another.

I’m happy to tell you that Overstream now has made it easy to export your captions / subtitles to other video-hosting websites.

Max, the creator of Overstream, recently added a feature where you can save your subtitles as a “.srt” file. An SRT file pretty much just contains your subtitles and the times in hundreds of seconds that they are to appear (and then disappear) in your video. I believe SRT files are similar to what is being used by major television and movie producers, but I could be wrong. And I also believe this is similar to what rather complex subtitling computer programs create — like Subtitle Workshop and MAGpie.

Anyhow, on Overstream, after you’re finished creating your subtitles, you can then click on “Tools” to see an option for exporting current subtitles as SRT. Click on that option, and then you’ll get an option to save the subtitles as a file on your computer or copy all the subtitles (and time codes) to your clipboard. (Hey Max, yet another suggestion: can you add buttons to allow the user to move the current video frame back or fro a half second, a second, and five seconds? I found myself constantly re-positioning the arrow showing the current video frame.)

Overstream screenshot

Google Video logoLast July, I told you how Google had added a feature where you can upload “.srt” files which is used to add captions / subtitles to videos. This is where you can import the SRT file you created with Overstream, or even paste the subtitles into a special text box.

Google import SRT screenshot

Google SRT import screenshot 2

And thus, I was able to easily subtitle my 21-second Google video of my younger daughter walking for the first time! Here’s a quick step-by-step guide on how I did this:

  1. Upload my video to Google Video
  2. Go to Overstream.net and create a new Overstream (series of subtitles) using my new Google Video as the base video
  3. Export the subtitles (via the Tools button on the Overstream Subtitles editing screen) to a SRT file on my computer
  4. Go back to Google Video, and view my “Uploaded Videos
  5. Click on the “Add” button next to “Captions / Subtitles” for that video
  6. Upload my SRT file to Google Video
  7. … and hey presto, the video is now subtitled!

A huge benefit of using Google Video and an uploaded SRT file is that the subtitles can be turned on or off (!!!) using the “CC” button at the bottom of the video screen. The subtitles appear just below the video itself. Doubling the size of the video or making it full-screen still makes the subtitles look sharp — the subtitles aren’t stretched and distorted, but rather the font size is increased by Google Video. Very nice. When the video is embedded on another website, like what I’m doing below, the captions seem a bit small — but that seems to be a Google Video issue and not Overstream’s.

Google CC screenshot
The SRT export functionality brings the Overstream – Google Video duo to the top of my list of recommended sites to use to caption your video. Thanks, Max, for listening to us and adding this super-duper-terrific functionality! Makes me think — it’s not easy for a sitemaster like Max to allow users who create media on his site to take this media elsewhere, so I really appreciate the new Export SRT file feature that Max added.

What’s that? You want me to shut up now and show you the video? Ok, ok! Without further ado, here’s the video of my younger daughter walking for the first time!

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16 Responses to “Easiest way to subtitle and show your videos: Overstream + Google Video”


  1. […] But then I ran into a problem. Just like for videos made through JumpCut, I was unable to post the Overstream video directly onto my blog. See, my blog runs on WordPress, and WordPress is pretty strict about embedding multi-media content. (Now, if I were using Blogger, it’d be fine. Hmm, maybe it’d soon be time to switch …) I’ve been in touch with the administrator of Overstream, Max, who seems to be a very cool person. We’re working on this problem right now, but WordPress is being stubborn.  (EDIT 9/17/07: Overstream has been updated, and the ability to export SRT files has been added!  See my later blog post discussing this.) […]

  2. Oscar Serna Says:

    Nice video and congratulations to your child! Anyway, like you said the size is small if people don’t want to bother with going big for the video. That is my only complaint with Google Video. I used it once and it was easy, just make subtitle files while editing my video then export and upload it. However I wish Google Video have a way for its users to customize the text size and not force the viewers to go big. Thanks for info but till that is resolved, I will still burn my subtitles into my video clips.

  3. ALAN JEFFERS Says:

    THAT GREAT ADD CLOSED CAPTION ON VEIDO I WILL KEEP EYES EVERY TIMES VEIDO MOSTLY I BEEN LOOKING FOR CLOSED CAPTION NO LUCK BUT OVERSTREAM WILL DO MOSTLY ALL THE VEIDO SO IT WOULD BE START EASIER FIND CLOSED CAPTION I HOPE SO FOR EVERYONE VIEDO LIKE CNN NEWS OR FOX NEWS TO SET UP CLOSED CAPTION ON COMPUTER VEIDO WILL BE GREATEST CROSS FINGER

  4. Bill Says:

    That is GREAT NEWS!

    I have built up a collection of Overstream Videos, Mostly captioned trailers of the features at our MoPix theatre.

    http://www.overstream.net/profile.php?username=grwebguy

  5. Bill Says:

    That is GREAT NEWS!

    I have built up a collection of Overstream Videos, Mostly captioned trailers of the features at our MoPix theatre.

    http://www.overstream.net/profile.php?username=grwebguy

  6. Lantana Says:

    ~~Sigh~~ I have been searching for YEARS for someone to caption a birthday party that we, the family, had for my mother’s 80th birtday. I have it on VRS, safe and sound and want to transfer it to DVD and caption it for myself and at least one other deaf person who was at the shin dig.

    My mother has now been gone for several years, and I keep thinking about this VRS and wanting to caption it so I can understand what my mother was saying. It is only about one hour long.

    Can anyone help? What to do?

    Thanks, Lantana

  7. Karen Says:

    Thanks for posting this– just what I needed!

  8. Bill Says:

    Well, it was kind of a long way around, but I found a Google Video Trailer, subtitled in Overstream (http://www.overstream.net/), saved the .srt files, and copied the Google Video to a .avi with Vixy (http://vixy.net/), and uploaded to Google with the .srt files.

    http://billcreswell.wordpress.com/2007/10/31/the-game-plan/

  9. proudgeek Says:

    Hi Bill! Thanks for sharing these links with us — and for captioning those movie trailers! I love watching trailers but had stopped lately because of the lack of captioning — so I love this.

  10. Idetrorce Says:

    very interesting, but I don’t agree with you
    Idetrorce

  11. Bill Says:

    MovCaptioner is a good option for Mac users who want to caption movies for Google Video. It makes it very easy to create the SRT file necessary to upload with your video. It also creates captions in many other formats and transcripts as well. Here is the link:

    http://www.synchrimedia.com


  12. […] Read my post on my preferred method of creating captions and then saving captioned videos onto Google Video — which should be similar to how you can save these to YouTube as well. […]


  13. Cool site, love the info.

  14. Rex Says:

    Nice one! thanks for this information! Overstream has made it easy.. Ty!


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