Universal Subtitles and PBS NewsHour are collaborating (with you!) to translate subtitles of Obama’s 2011 State of the Union speech.

You can join the effort right now! Instructions below. And you can watch the video with captions– and soon translations– below.

{“video_url”: “http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-RSjbtJHi_Q”}

Help Translate Now
Doing a translation is super easy and here’s the best way to get started on a group effort like this:

1. Start by going to the Universal Subtitles page for the video: State of the Union

2. Then log in (you can create an account quickly or use Twitter or Google or OpenID to login).

3. Click ‘add translation’ or choose a translation that’s been started and edit it. If you get a locked message: Someone else is editing the video. If this happens, click the ‘FOLLOW’ button below the video permalink and you’ll get an email update as soon as the video becomes unlocked.

Important note: only one person can edit a language at a time (our multiple-simultaneous-editing feature is coming in about two months). But you don’t need to do an entire translation! Feel free to jump into a language for 5, 10, or 20 minutes, do as much as you want. Be sure to save and close the window when you aren’t actively translating so other translators can work on that language. Thanks for helping!

The Goal
We hope to make the speech available to non-English speaking viewers in the US and abroad. This project could easily set a record for making a State of the Union available with more non-English language subtitles than ever before.

Universal Subtitles is an open platform for collaborative video captioning and translation. It’s like a Wikipedia for subtitles and a really easy way people to translate almost any internet video into nearly any language. If you’re curious about how it works, check out our collaboration with OK Go, where fans were asked to help translate music videos and created more than 100 translations in 24 hours.

translation interface
The Universal Subtitles Translation Interface

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usubs logoAbout Universal Subtitles An open approach to make video captions, subtitles, and translations easier for everyone. A project of the non-profit Participatory Culture Foundation.