After you have successfully completed the Account Setup process, it’s helpful to familiarize yourself with the Otter interface and how to use it with Zoom. In this article you will learn about:
Otter Interface in Zoom
Once setup is complete, the "Live on Otter.ai" button will appear in the top-left corner of the Zoom window for all meetings that you create and host. Clicking the Live button and selecting View Stream on Otter.ai will open a new browser window showing the live transcript from the Otter website.
You and your meeting participants can arrange the Zoom and Otter live transcription windows so they are both visible, and side-by-side on your desktop.
During the meeting, your participants are able to view the transcription, copy it for later use, highlight certain words or request access to view the transcript later. Once the host ends the meeting, participants will no longer be able to view the transcript unless the meeting creator explicitly shares it. A popup will appear on the participant's screen stating that the live event has ended.
Note: Otter does not currently support Zoom breakout rooms. The live transcription stream will remain active in the main Zoom room throughout the meeting.
Next, learn about How to turn Otter Off / On.
By default, transcription with Otter is turned on for all Zoom meetings that you create. However, you can easily turn off transcriptions during a meeting. You can also turn off transcriptions ahead of time for recurring Zoom meetings.
Turning off Transcription During a Meeting
To turn off transcription during a meeting, click on the Live icon at the top left corner of your Zoom window and select Stop Live Stream. Only the host of the meeting can stop the live transcription stream.
To resume the transcription live stream, click the More button in the bottom right corner of your Zoom window and click the Live on Custom Live Streaming Service option. The Live button will reappear in Zoom and the transcription live stream will now be viewable on a new transcription page on Otter.
Note: If the Otter license holder (and Zoom meeting creator) transfers the 'Host' role to another participant during an active Zoom meeting, that new host can turn the Otter transcription stream on and off.
Turning off Transcription for Recurring Meetings (ahead of time)
If the Zoom meeting is set up to recur, you can turn off transcription for all sessions of that meeting before they start by following these steps:
- Log in to your account on the Otter.ai website and navigate to Apps -> Transcription Settings (https://otter.ai/zoom-connection-settings/live-notes).
- Use the toggle switches under the Permission column turn transcription on or off.
Note: Newly created recurring Zoom meetings may take some time to appear on the Otter website.
Optional: If you're interested in displaying closed captions within your Zoom meeting window, learn more about Live Closed Captions using Otter.
Zoom Update April 2021
UCSF IT updated the Zoom application in April 2021 to add live transcription and closed captioning functionality to Zoom for all users. We recommend using this new method for enabling closed captions instead of the API code method outline below. Otter is still recommended for all other transcription functions. Continue to the Zoom CC tab of this help article to learn more.
In addition to giving students the option to view live transcription from Otter in a browser window, you can also overlay closed captions during your Zoom session. For this functionality, you will have to copy a unique key (known as the API code) from Zoom and paste it into the corresponding Otter transcript at the start of each Zoom session.
- Currently, there is no way to enable closed captioning before a Zoom meeting begins. Closed captions must be manually enabled after the meeting is started.
- Only the Zoom meeting creator (original host) and Otter licensee can copy the API code and paste it into the Otter transcript. Co-hosts cannot do this because they do not own the Otter transcript.
- Closed captions display the same text as the live transcription window, but you may notice a slight delay due to the additional processing that is taking place.
Setting Up Closed Captions in Zoom
When you follow the process to setup an Otter license, your Zoom settings should automatically be configured to allow closed captioning. However, we recommend verifying this setting before proceeding:
- Log in to your Zoom account at ucsf.zoom.us.
- Click on the Settings tab.
- Click on the In Meeting (Advanced) group.
- Confirm that the 'Closed Captioning' option is enabled.
At the start of each Zoom meeting you will need to copy the code from Zoom, into Otter, before you and your participants can activate closed captions. The process is outlined below:
- Once your session has started, click the Closed Caption (CC) button in the Zoom toolbar.
- Click the Copy the API token button.
- Click the Live on Otter.ai button in the top left corner of the Zoom window and select View Live Stream on Otter.ai to open the transcript in your browser.
- Within the Otter live stream window, click the ellipsis (…) button in the top right corner.
- Paste the copied API code in the field provided.
- Click the Save button. You should see the message “Enabled Closed Caption for Zoom," if the process is successful.
- Return to the Zoom window. You and your meeting participants will now be able to click the Closed Captions button from the Zoom toolbar, and select Show Subtitles to start seeing closed captions!
Next: Editing Transcripts
In April 2021, the UCSF Zoom application was updated to provide another option for transcription and captioning, called "Zoom Live Transcription." Any UCSF Zoom meeting host can enable these features because no Otter license is required. The strength of Zoom's built-in transcription features is an easy-to-use process for enabling closed captions.
For a detailed comparison of Zoom and Otter's transcription features, please visit:
Zoom Live Transcription vs. Otter.
Enabling Live Transcripts in Zoom
To enable Live Transcription during a Zoom session, follow the steps below:
- Start a Zoom meeting. You must be the host.
- Click the CC Live Transcript button at the bottom of your Zoom window.
- Click the Enable Auto Transcription button.
- Your meeting participants will now see the CC Live Transcript button at the bottom of their Zoom window. They can click the button to turn captions on and off.
Additionally, participants can also choose to view the transcript in a side panel within their Zoom window. From this panel they will be able to scroll through the conversation, and they can click the Save Transcript button to download a copy of the transcript.
Transcripts and Recording
If you host a Zoom meeting and want to a copy of the transcript after the meeting ends, including a VTT closed caption file, you must record the meeting using the Record to Cloud option. Choosing the Record on this Computer option will not generate a transcript file for future use.
When Zoom sessions are recorded to the cloud, you will receive an email with a link to the recordings in your account on the Zoom website. This includes a video file, an audio file, and the transcript in VTT format. The transcript file may take a few hours to process before it is available for download.