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Verbatim Transcription and Non-Verbatim Transcription| Key Differences

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If you need to hire online transcription service or if you want to begin providing these services, you need to understand the difference between verbatim transcription and non-verbatim transcription. Knowing which of the two you need for your project is vital. If you pick the wrong one, it’s possible you’ll miss important information. Even though non-verbatim transcription may include information some people don’t need, it can be absolutely vital to others. Let’s take a look at the difference between the two and the cases in which you might use one over the other.

What Is Verbatim Transcription?

If you’re wondering what is a verbatim transcription, the answer is actually very simple. It is an exact transcript of everything said in a recording. This includes things such as pauses, fillers such as “umm,” laughter, coughing, and any other noise. It even notes when there is the silence that lasts for more than a second or so. Every detail is recorded. It may even include sounds such as doors opening, chairs moving, and background voices that can’t be made out clearly.

In many cases, transcriptionists who create verbatim scripts will include parentheticals to describe different noises in the background and ellipses to show when someone pauses or trails off. They also include any grammar errors, unfinished sentences, stuttering, and any other audible sound. Sometimes, this creates a transcript that isn’t necessarily easy to read but is an absolute accurate document of what occurred.

what is verbatim transcription and non-verbatim

What is Non-Verbatim Transcription?

Instead of verbatim transcription, you can ask for non-verbatim transcription. This option provides you with a transcript that has been cleaned up. It includes a factual transcript that captures all of the details discussed in the conversation, but it is not word-for-word. Filler words, stuttering, background noises, and other sounds are omitted. For example, if someone said, “I, um, I’m not…not sure,” a non-verbatim transcript would read, “I’m not sure.”

In many cases, how someone said something isn’t important. All the business needs to know is the gist of the conversation, not that someone paused a lot or that there were noises in the background. Note that non-verbatim transcripts should never add words or rewrite sentences. They’re not editing services. Instead, they simply remove utterances, filler words, and other sounds that do not affect the meaning of the sentence.

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When Should You Choose Verbatim Transcription Services Over Non-Verbatim?

There are some situations that require verbatim transcripts. If you’re doing transcription for court records or police interviews, you would want to have every utterance and sound recorded. Someone who uses a lot of filler words may be nervous or anxious, and that can put a completely different spin on what they’re saying. It can even indicate when someone is lying, which is vital information to attorneys and police officers. Those filler words and other phrases that might be left out can also indicate when a person isn’t sure of what they’re saying. When looking for transcription services online, make sure they understand when you need true verbatim transcription. Otherwise, your transcript may not have all of these details. Court transcriptionists always record verbatim what is said by witnesses, the judge, and other members of the court.

On the other hand, if you simply need a transcript of a speech, business discussion, or other presentation and don’t care about how something was said, a non-verbatim transcription is often all you need. These documents are much easier to read, so you can understand what was said without reading through all the pauses and other confusing dialogue. Most people who need transcriptions are looking for this option.

Finding Transcription Services Online

If you’re in need of verbatim online audio transcription, we can assist you with:

Different Levels of Verbatim Transcription


Our team of professionals offers three different levels of verbatim transcription, including true verbatim that includes all non-verbal communications, sounds, and filler words. Every time someone in the recording laughs pauses, coughs, or says something that doesn’t make sense, it will be included in the transcript.


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Regular Verbatim


We also offer regular verbatim, which doesn’t include all of the non-verbal communication, repetitions, or ambient sounds. This option allows you to more easily read the transcript and is perfect if all you need is the meaning of the conversation but still want to see how the speaker actually said things.


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Intelligent Verbatim


Our third option, intelligent verbatim, includes editing. Any grammar mistakes or odd sentence structure will be fixed. This is an even easier-to-read document that captures just the meaning of what was said without any of the extra information.


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Get Reliable Help with Transcription Today

We’re ready to help you with all of your verbatim transcription needs. Whether you need a true transcript or want some editing done to make it more readable, we can help.

professional verbatim transcription services

We have been in the industry for years now, so let us provide you with accurate verbatim transcription services. Rely your online audio transcription needs on us and you will get access to:

  • Well-experienced experts who guarantee you quality and accuracy.
  • On time delivery of every order, even if you have a tight deadline.
  • Confidentiality, we offer secure payment through our order
  • 24/7 availability, so you can get our support any time you in need
  • Full satisfaction and money-back guarantees

Whether you are interested in verbatim transcription or non-verbatim one, simply contact us today to discuss your transcription needs!