Do Something Good

Rob Lehr is an awesome guy. He’s the one and only person behind Hambone Productions–which does all the videography for Skepticon.

But here’s the thing about videos–they don’t work for the hearing impaired. Transcripts do. They’re also useful for people who want to quote excerpts, people who don’t have lots of spare time, people who use screen-readers, and on and on and on. Accessibility is important and the skepto-atheist community can do something.  Making these available to those who can’t do audio-only is the minimum standard of access.

So, here’s what’s happening. Transcripts–crowdsourced transcripts (with permission from Rob). Comment below with the one you want to take. And check the comments to make sure there aren’t duplicates! I’m doing Rebecca Watson’s, Miriam has JT’s, and I’ll keep updating this list with links as they go up, since not every video has been uploaded yet.

Rules of thumb I use:

  • Brackets for non-verbal activites [mumble] [audience laughs]
  • em-dashes to show interrupting (“and then she said–)
  • removing filler words (um, uhhh) unless they involve really big pauses or seem conversationally significant.
  • Bolding each speaker’s name.

The List:
Bolded talks have been taken, but check the comments too because I’m going to be away from my computer today.

Greta Christina
JT Eberhard
George Hrab

Phil Ferguson
Julia Galef
Panel Discussion – How should Rationalists approach Relationships and Marriage
Sean Carroll – The Higgs Boson and the Fundamental Nature of Reality
Jessica Ahlquist
Jennifer Oulette
Hemant Mehta – The Rise of Young Atheists
PZ Myers – Evolution, I Do The Kinky Stuff
Rebecca Watson
Keith Lowell Jensen

James Croft – God is Dead. So What?
Matt Dillahunty
Deborah Hyde – The Natural History of the European Werewolf
Richard Carrier
Darrel Ray – The Shame of it All, or Why Do We Act Like Christians
Amanda Knief – Caution: Atheists at Work. How to Avoid Employment Discrimination
Teresa MacBain – Shift Happens
Tony Pinn – Racial Diversity and/in Our Fight Against Theism


  1. julian says

    I’d be happy to help. Lots of time to waste but I’ve a few quick questions. How are we submitting these transcripts? Are there any deadlines?

  2. Kate Donovan says

    So right now, no. Basically I’m setting this up via this blog post. Send the transcripts to me as of now (donovanable[at]gmail[dot]com). I’ll get them to Rob or the Skepticon team or find a place to host them.

    If this changes, I’ll edit this comment and the blog post itself to reflect that.

    Also, no deadlines as of yet, especially as the videos aren’t all available now.

  3. says

    I’ll do Sean Carroll’s talk. Should be fun!
    Also, have you talked to the people at A+ Scribe about this? It seems like this would be right up their alley. It would at least be a good place to host the transcripts.

  4. Kate Donovan says

    I did start this separately because of the permissions it takes to be a transcriber on A+ Scribe, and because I know they’re backlogged. However, I have reached out :)

  5. Kate Donovan says

    Also, I’ll not you down as doing his talk! It isn’t up yet, but I’ll include the link when it is :)

  6. ischemgeek says

    You might be interested in A+ Scribe, a crowdsourced transcript project started by trinioler on the A+ forums. It’s basically what you have in mind here.

    It’d be great if you’d give trinioler permission to host transcripts you gather.

  7. Kate Donovan says

    I know trinoiler! I’ve actually already contacted A+Scribe, though I am going to look into Skepticon/Hambone for hosting first.

  8. sylva says

    I’ll do Greta Christina’s. She’s such a clear speaker, as well as an excellent one with great phrasing, that this should be fun.

  9. sylva says

    Also a question – I’m assuming that the Q&A part should be included. Since Greta Christina’s is via Skype, should all the interplay as part of the questioning be included, or just the questions and the answers?

  10. Kate Donovan says

    I’d suggest making a note that there was interplay and tech difficulties, but that you cut it. I sometimes use the [tech difficulties] tag to signify that.

  11. says

    I tell you what — in a few days, after this thread has died down, if you have any talks left over, I’ll be happy to cover one. You can contact me through my website.

  12. Kate Donovan says

    Excellent! I just added the link to his video, actually, and now I’ve marked it as claimed for you

  13. tubi says

    I just started watching it a little at work, but I, you know, have to work…so I’ll take a closer look tonight.


  14. Aunolin says

    Hey Kate! I’m down for Darrel Ray’s talk; I’ll start right now. Can you text me to confirm? Thanks, friend!

  15. Aunolin says

    S’alright! I only got about 7% of the way through, anyway.

    Also, I can’t be mad at anyone who uses Dr. Strange in their Gravatar :^D

  16. Aunolin says

    Is there anything I can work on starting tomorrow? I’ve got a goodly amount of time that’s going to dry up as soon as I hit Friday.

  17. says

    Glad I caught you before you got too far in. %) And thank you for knowing who my Gravitar is. Closest guess I’ve heard so far was “Tony Stark”, I suppose because they both have goatees.

  18. Aunolin says

    Also shiny circles on their chests, I guess? Our floor theme sophomore year of college was Marvel vs. DC, and my door dec was Doctor Strange. I have that poster on my wall now, so essentially, your Gravatar is about two feet from my head at night 0_o.

  19. Chris Looye says

    I’ll do PZ’s if no one has claimed him yet.

    Finally, being unemployed and on the internet too much has paid off!

  20. sylva says

    It’s me again. Looking at another weekend coming up, and some time to work on Deborah Hyde’s speech.

  21. julie says

    Hi! If there are unclaimed talks still, I could do one or two or even three (I don’t care whose) during the week. Let me know.
    Also, I’m a language translator so should you ever need a volunteer Slovak/English translator and/or interpreter, I can help with that too.

  22. julie says

    On second thought, if I can choose, I’d love to do Deborah Hyde’s and Darren Day’s if that’s okay.

  23. julie says

    Looks like I’m having a conversation with myself, sorry, but FtB seriously needs an ‘edit’ button in the comments. I see both talks are taken already.

  24. says

    Does anybody know how to contact Rob Lehr? I can’t seem to reach him neither through gmail nor youtube messages…


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *