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This guide will explain using captions in MS Stream, how to edit using the editing tool, and how to download to edit captions manually.

Viewing auto-generated captions

After uploading a video, a transcript will be auto-generated by Stream. Generating the captions will take some time. Typically 1-2x the video's duration.

Navigate to your video in My content > Videos and click on the link to view the video. 

When the transcript is ready it will be presented on the right-hand side. This is attached to the video and will be accessible to all viewers. Viewers can enable and disable their view of the captions by clicking the "CC" button, the 4th button on the bottom right side of the video.

Editing auto-generated captions

The auto-generated captions are not 100% accurate. If you want to improve the text you should watch through your video with the captions enabled.

If you see a mistake in the generated transcription you can click the pencil icon in the top right corner of the "Transcript" box to activate Edit mode. This will allow you to edit the file line by line. You must click Save on each line after making your changes. After you are finished making changes, click the "Tick" icon at the top right to return to View mode.

The changes will take effect immediately after clicking Save, but your view of the captions will not be updated until you refresh the video page.

This function can appear complicated or awkward to use at first, but it will become more straightforward after some use.

If you do have issues with Stream's built-in transcript editor you can download the caption file and edit it manually (see below).

Be default, you can only edit the details and transcripts for your own videos. If you wish to allow other people access to this, you must add them as People to each of your videos. You can do this in the Permissions option in Update Video Details

See here for help:

Downloading and editing captions manually

This is not a necessary step if you are comfortable with Stream's transcript editor, but if you have issues with this, you can edit the .vtt file manually.

You can download the generated transcript file from the same options in "Update Video Details", on the right side box beside "Captions". This will download the auto-generated .vtt file, not a PDF or Word document of your transcript. 



If you try to open the file, your computer may ask how you want to open the file. As it is a text file and not a PDF or Word document, it may not have a default programme to open in. ".vtt" files can be opened and edited in text editors such as Notepad. They can also be viewed (not edited) in an internet browser such as Internet Explorer or Google Chrome. The content of the text will be in caption format, so will include timecodes and specific formatting. It will not look like a clean transcript of your video.

Once you have opened the file in a text editor, you can either listen to the video while you read along or just read the text to look for obvious mistakes. Make any changes you want to the text, but be careful to not change any of the other formattings. When you are finished, either click to Save your file or Save As a new file then re-upload it to your Stream video. This is done in the "Update Video Details" options where you downloaded the caption file.


If it is not already un-ticked, you must un-tick "Autogenerate captions". You will then see either "Upload a caption file" or "Edit" links.

"Upload a caption file" allows you to navigate to and choose your new caption file. 

"Edit" will open a new Captions window. You must click the "X" to remove the original caption file, and then you will be able to upload your new file.

You should open the video and refresh the page to check the caption file has successfully uploaded and is correct for the video.