Automatic Sync Technologies (CaptionSync)

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What Is Automatic Sync Technologies
(i.e. CaptionSync)?

Categories: Video Captioning

Automatic Sync Technologies (AST) is Clemson Online's video accessibility service. AST services include transcription, recorded video captioning, live or realtime event captioning, audio description, some caption translation, and some foreign language captioning. 

*See Additional Information for price and account access information.*

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Important

Additional Information

  • Can I get an Automatic Sync Technologies (AST) Account? How do I get one?

    Clemson University departments and grant holders can get accounts and can allow additional personnel to get user accounts (i.e. sub-accounts). Email IThelp@clemson.edu to learn how.

    *It is strongly recommended that primary users of department and grant project accounts work with the AST representative to annually review and manage sub-account access. When personnel leave Clemson University or migrate to a different department, their access to their AST user account is not automatically terminated.* 

  • How can I get free services through Clemson Online?

    When Clemson employees take advantage of Clemson Online's Video Production services or Clemson Online's Course Development services, Clemson Online will get eligible videos serviced by AST at no extra cost.

    Please note that a copy of all caption, transcription, etc. files generated by Automatic Sync Technologies during Clemson Online's Media Accessibility Service are stored in a Caption Bank on a University supported Cloud Storage system, unless otherwise arranged. If you find that you later need a copy of any of these files, please contact Clemson Online. 

  • How much does AST services cost?

    The cost of Automatic Sync Technologies' services varies based on the following factors:

    • Service Selected - i.e. transcription vs. captioning vs. audio description
    • Selected Turnaround Time - turnaround time typically ranges from 8 hours to 4 days, except for select services
    • Duration of Video(s) - Durations are rounded up to the nearest minute, meaning that a 0:02:03 video will be charged the same as a 0:03:00 minute video
    • Department or Grant Holder's decision regarding a prepurchase of services - If services are prepurchased, then a discount may be applied to the standard rate

     Under Clemson Online's most recent contract with AST, the pay-as-you-go rate for captioning of video recordings with a 4 day turnaround is $2.15 per video minute.

    *The balance for pre-purchased services expires after 4 years.*

  • Can I use AST for my graduate or professional level research project?

    If your department or grant will allow you to get an Automatic Sync Technologies account, it is possible to use AST's services for your research-related transcription, captioning, audio description, and subtitling needs. However, you may need to speak with your AST representative about getting a Business Associate Agreement (BAA) and/or Non Disclosure Agreement (NDA) first. There may be a fee associated with acquiring the NDA.

    AST's Confidentiality and Privacy Policy

    Live captions using eCART are not HIPAA compliant.

  • How long are files stored?

    AST stores original media files on their servers for 45 days, stores audio tracks and transcript files on their servers for six months (to allow you to edit or rerun the results), and stores caption and audio description results for five years. The AST SmartPlayer for videos is also available for five years. There is no storage limit, and all data is stored or hosted on USA servers.

    Whenever you receive free professional captioning services through Clemson Online, a copy of the caption, transcription, and/or audio description files generated through that service are stored in Clemson Online's Caption Bank indefinitely--unless other arrangements are made. If you later need a copy of any of these files, please contact Clemson Online.

  • How do I connect AST and my Kaltura account so that completed captions appear automatically?

    To connect your Kaltura and Automatic Sync Technologies accounts:

    1. Log into Automatic Sync Technologies
    2. Go to "Settings" then "Account Features."
    3. Select "Enable my account for Kaltura Integration" from the drop-down menu.
      The option that ends with "Kaltura MediaSpace integration" should not be enabled, but it won't hurt anything if it is enabled too.
    4. Click "Request Account Feature."
    5. If you receive an email from Automatic Sync Technologies (or Verbit) with further instructions, do not act on it and do not delete it.
    6. Email IThelp@clemson.edu with the subject, "Integrating AST Account with Kaltura," and wait for further instruction.
  • How do I connect AST with a different video hosting platform?

    Please refer to Automatic Sync Technologies' Support Center for appropriate documentation and reach out to AST support for any additional assistance.

    As Kaltura is the only video hosting platform supported by Clemson University, Clemson is severely limited in its ability to provide tech support for other video hosting platforms.

  • When should I use AST's SmartPlayer?

    If you have purchased audio description services or caption translation services through Automatic Sync Technologies (AST), you may need to use AST's SmartPlayer. Kaltura does not support extended audio descriptions or uploads of more than one caption file. If these media accessibility services were ordered through Clemson Online, Clemson Online will send you a copy of the AST SmartPlayer embed code.

    *The AST SmartPlayer expires after 5 years.*

  • What is audio description?

    Audio description is a separate audio track that describes important, purely visual information to people who are visually impaired. Here are some important terms for discussing audio descriptions:

    • Closed Audio Description - these descriptions are a separate audio track that can be turned on and off.
    • Open Audio Descriptions - these descriptions cannot be turned off and are typically baked into the video's audio.
    • Standard Audio Descriptions - video playback is not effected by these descriptions as they are spoken during natural gaps in the video's dialogue.
    • Extended Audio Descriptions - video playback is paused while the descriptions are spoken.

     *Automatic Sync Technologies (AST) creates extended audio descriptions only.* As such, you may need to plan to use AST's SmartPlayer or make plans to use the files generated by this service to create standard and/or open audio descriptions.

    *Videos must be captioned by AST or have a caption file loaded to AST ($5 per file) before the video can be submitted for audio description services.*

Tech Support

In most cases, you will need to contact your AST representative.

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At a Glance Tool Comparison
Name This Tool Comparison 1 Comparison 2
Tool Icon Adobe Connect Zoom WebEx Meeting
Extra Cost None None None
University Tech Support Yes Yes Yes
Uses Clemson Login Yes Yes Yes
Canvas Integration Not Enabled Yes Yes
Accessibility Good* Great* Okay*

*Rankings marked with asterisks are based on the tool's general reputation in the accessibility community and not on testing that Clemson has completed.

+Rankings marked with a plus are based on testing done ____.