Archive for the ‘Background Info’ Category

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Because of YouTube’s 10 minute rule, I have had to be creative in where I end videos over 10 minutes. I want the ending to make sense, but also leave the viewer wanting to hear the next part. I think the best cutting I did was with Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s “The Yellow Wall Paper”. It is a short story written as a journal of a woman slowly slipping into madness. I ended up cutting each scene at the end of a journal entry.

Kinda cool, huh? I group entries where convenient, but I think the 5 videos break up her descent well.

With longer pieces with less obvious breaks, I just try to make them logical and interesting.

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It will require some cutting, but you can get your hours long speech or half-hour long video uploaded and usable.

It used to be that YouTube had something like a favored user status and those users (universities, companies, etc) could upload longer than 10 minute content. However, as far as my non-favored-self can tell, this is no longer possible.

So. What is a Youtuber to do? Around the same time as YouTube was making strict the 10-minute rule, it introduced playlists. Playlists are sets of videos which continuously play. Say you have a 39 minute video of a lecture on Ancient Egypt.

[I am assuming: you can upload your video without violating your bandwidth restrictions. You have the rights to the video you are uploading. You have a YouTube account]


  1. Take a video editing program
    1. Macs: the new iMovie is great, Audacity (perhaps for Windows als0), Final Cut, Final Cut Pro
    2. Windows: Windows Movie Maker
  2. Chop your video into <10 minute segments
  3. (add explanatory intro/extro titles)
  4. Upload the videos to you YouTube channel
  5. (add tags and a simple, informative description of the video’s content)
  6. Go to My Account->Playlists
  7. New->Playlist
  8. Now, there might be a sexier way to do this, but here is how I do it. Open each of your newly uploaded videos (it may take around 1/2 an hour for YouTube to process newly uploaded videos) in a different window or tab, and at the bottom of each video click the “+ Playlist” and add it to the playlist you just created
  9. Now you have a playlist which will play your entire lecture nearly continuously and can be found through a normal YouTube search.
  10. (Subtitle/closed caption you video)

That should be it. Enjoy!

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When I first began recording Peter Pan, I told one of the participants who I did not know that:

“While I won’t do everything right the first time, I promise I will do my best to do it better the second time.”

Well, I didn’t manage to make the Sonnets I recorded last semester accessible when I first made them, but on my second time editing videos, I am doing my best to do it better. Here are my first two tries:

Sonnet 4 by William Shakespeare, video with subtitles. Read by Julia Sheehy

Sonnet 104 by William Shakespeare, video with subtitles. Read by Gabriel Routh

I had tried out some subtitle specific sites, which if I had put some time into them might have paid off. However, using YouTube’s annotations technology is simply easier. Also, because the Annotations are not included in the video file, viewers can turn them off at will.

Here is my method. I will walk you through adding annotations to Gabriel Routh’s recording of Sonnet 138. I am assuming you have admin access to the YouTube video (ie, created it and/or have admin access to the YouTube Channel).

Step 1 to Adding Subtitles to Published YouTube Videos

Step 1 to Adding Subtitles to Published YouTube Videos

1) Viewing you video, look to the right-hand side of the screen. Click on Annotations (under Edit Video).

2) Get a copy of the text you’ve recorded. For me this is simple, because the texts are public domain. If you are adding subtitles to something where the words are not pre-printed, you won’t need this step.

3) Add the words as Annotations. I like YouTube’s Note version of the annotations. I always input all of the text first:

Step 2 to Adding Subtitles to Published YouTube Videos

Step 2 to Adding Subtitles to Published YouTube Videos

and then I

4) Format and time the subtitles.

  • I like to place all of my subtitles in the bottom left had corner, with the left-side and the top aligned with the little icon’s right side and top. I also like to keep them to 1 line.
Step 3, Adding Subtitles to Published YouTube Videos

Step 3 to Adding Subtitles to Published YouTube Videos

  • I also like to give each subtitle 3 seconds, with 1 second between each subtitle. This will not be their end duration or location, but it distributes them across the video in such a way that helps me keep them in order. Then, as I am listening, I get individual subtitles as close to their respective vocalizations as possible, while leaving space between them for the next step, which is fine-tuning.
  • Now, this is the most time-consuming part. You have to watch the video to time the subtitles to go with the words. Why? Well, it’s out of respect for your audience. If they are deaf, they deserve the same video experience as hearing folk. If they like to read along while someone is speaking, you’ll really confuse them if the words they’re reading and listening to don’t match up. It’s a matter of craftswomanship.
Step 4, Adding Subtitles to Published YouTube Videos

Step 4 to Adding Subtitles to Published YouTube Videos

5) Now make sure to add tags to reflect your work. I would suggest: “subtitle, closed captioning”.

Here is my final product:

Now you’ve taken a step to making your video accessible to all audiences!

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Hey all,

Because I am no longer holding auditions, I do not need an Audition page. However, the content I posted there is still valuable. I am posting it here:

Audition Form

Please fill this out and bring it to the audition.

Audition Form–EXAMPLE

An example of how to fill out the audition form.

Sonnet for Auditions


Why didst thou promise such a beauteous day,
And make me travel forth without my cloak,
To let base clouds o’ertake me in my way,
Hiding thy bravery in their rotten smoke?
‘Tis not enough that through the cloud thou break,
To dry the rain on my storm-beaten face,
For no man well of such a salve can speak
That heals the wound and cures not the disgrace:
Nor can thy shame give physic to my grief;
Though thou repent, yet I have still the loss:
The offender’s sorrow lends but weak relief
To him that bears the strong offence’s cross.
Ah! but those tears are pearl which thy love sheds,
And they are rich and ransom all ill deeds.

Huck Finn Passage for Auditions

[Scene: Huck and Jim got separated while rafting down the Mississippi. When Huck finds his way back to the raft again, Jim has fallen asleep. Huck wakes Jim up and convinces him that his memories of their separation were merely a dream. Then Huck asks Jim to interpret that dream. Jim has just finish doing this when Huck points out the refuse on the deck which is proof that Jim was not dreaming.]

“Oh, well, that’s all interpreted well enough as far as it goes, Jim,” I says; “but what doesthese things stand for?”

It was the leaves and rubbish on the raft and the smashed oar. You could see them first-rate now.

Jim looked at the trash, and then looked at me, and back at the trash again. He had got the dream fixed so strong in his head that he couldn’t seem to shake it loose and get the facts back into its place again right away. But when he did get the thing straightened around he looked at me steady without ever smiling, and says:

“What do dey stan’ for? I’se gwyne to tell you. When I got all wore out wid work, en wid de callin’ for you, en went to sleep, my heart wuz mos’ broke bekase you wuz los’, en I didn’ k’yer no’ mo’ what become er me en de raf’. En when I wake up en fine you back agin, all safe en soun’, de tears come, en I could a got down on my knees en kiss yo’ foot, I’s so thankful. En all you wuz thinkin’ ’bout wuz how you could make a fool uv ole Jim wid a lie. Dat truck dah is trash; en trash is what people is dat puts dirt on de head er dey fren’s en makes ’em ashamed.”

Then he got up slow and walked to the wigwam, and went in there without saying anything but that. But that was enough. It made me feel so mean I could almost kissed hisfoot to get him to take it back.

Here is a link to the full-text of Huckleberry Finn.

Please see this post for a note on the different dialects shown in this passage.

Introduction to the Posner Poetry and Prose Project (p4)

Thank you for considering auditioning for the Posner Poetry and Prose Project. In the first round of auditions, I will be primarily casting for the sonnet series but feel free to audition for the Huckleberry Finn recordings as well. You may download the audition form here, type your responses, print it out and bring it to your audition(preferred), or fill out one of the extra copies in the Posner Center before your audition.

This project should take 3 hours of your time this semester. 1/2 an hour for you audition (includes wait time), 1.5 hours for the first recording session. 1 hour for a second recording session (may not be necessary).

If accepted into the Project, you will be offered a contract for your performance. A copy of it can be found here when it is finalized.

Feel free to tour the website and get a feel for the project. I will take any questions you have by email or after your audition. Thank you again, and enjoy the literature!


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In no particular order,

  1. Practice one-session production–do not leave making movies to the end of the semester. Related to this, I would like to put out a movie once every two weeks.
  2. Organization (1 folder per person with images and soundfiles all in the same place) was good, but because of CMU’s limits on student server space, I wasted a lot of time retaking photographs and rerecording audio. Fix: I will be buying an external harddrive
  3. Having a theme (like storytelling) helped me more in the editing process then in my show-opening speech
  4. I over-estimated my ability to get people to read for me, and the importance of the Facebook group
  5. I under-estimated the commitment of non-drama majors and my performer’s abilities. Thank guys,  cuz, wow.
  6. I also under-estimated the amount of time it would take me to learn software (Logic Pro, Adobe Photoshop, iMovie)
  7. I did not expect to find so many similiar projects on YouTube

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I believe in closed captioning. It seems like a great idea. But darn, is it ever hard to find good software for it!

I wrote about one free service in a previous post, but it turns out it is only for Windows.

I just finished using Overstream’s webapp, and boy is it slick. Here is Julia Sheehy reading William Shakespeare’s Sonnet 128, with subtitles.

Unfortunately, video captions made through Overstream can only be played through Overstream’s website. This is obnoxious because I want to use YouTube to distribute the media from this project. It’s a great application though. Oh well, here’s to the next software I try out.

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