Rain, sleet, or “Snowpocalypse,” ATC is here for all your transcription needs!

Rain, sleet, or Snowpocalypse - ATC Blog

Winter Storm Juno or “Snowpocalypse” is arriving in the northeast with a vengeance overnight tonight, so we’re preparing for the worst while still handling all of your transcription needs to the best of our abilities!

Team ATC is ready to make sure your audio and video content aren’t buried beneath the snowdrifts or blown away in the 50+ mph blizzard-like winds.

Continue reading “Rain, sleet, or “Snowpocalypse,” ATC is here for all your transcription needs!”

Confidentiality IS a no-brainer!

Confidentiality IS a no-brainer - ATC Blog

Oy, the paperwork, the legalese, the “CYA” that’s now REQUIRED when running a transcription service…or any type of service, it seems.  It’s truly never-ending, and we spend hours upon hours reviewing agreements of all kinds with major institutions while they perform risk assessments of ATC’s downtown Boston office space.  Our founder, owner, and president Sandy’s favorite is showing off his circa 1940s Brownie box camera that sits perched on a high shelf in his office impersonating part of our state-of-the-art video security system.  He was thrilled the day one of the younger risk assessment people actually thought it WAS part of the security system.  What’s the reason for all of this, you may ask? It’s the “confidentiality conundrum” that truly isn’t a conundrum…a confidentiality agreement is a no-brainer.  So…does a confidentiality agreement automatically guarantee confidentiality?

Continue reading “Confidentiality IS a no-brainer!”

Rain, sleet, or “Snowpocalypse,” ATC is here for all your transcription needs!

(Blizzard of ’78 picture By David L. Ryan/Globe Staff/file 1978)

Winter Storm Nemo, also known as “Snowpocalypse,” is arriving in New England, but team ATC is ready to make sure your audio and video content aren’t buried beneath the snowdrifts, or blown away in the blizzard-like winds.

The Blizzard of 1978 caught many people by surprise, and Boston was shut down for days afterwards

Continue reading “Rain, sleet, or “Snowpocalypse,” ATC is here for all your transcription needs!”

Our Transcriptionists: Part of the 47% Honor Roll!

Our Transcriptionists - Audio Transcription Center Blog

What do you do with people who have a keen sense of hearing, ridiculously fast fingers, one hell of an accurate mind, but prefer not to interact with the public?

What do you do with people who prefer to interact with words and ideas instead?

What do you do with people who prefer a job that offers near instant gratification?

What do you do with people who prefer producing high quality transcripts out of a poor audio recording?

What do you do with people who prefer leaving their work at the office?

What do you do with people who get their jollies by beating unrealistic deadlines?

Since 1966 we’ve found a home for these anomalies of the working world, and we’ve been able to build our highly educatedand culturally diverse team of transcriptionistsfrom this truly amazing group of oddballs.

Give the Audio Transcription Center a try, and see the difference it makes in the accuracy of your transcripts and the speed of your work flow.  (As well as helping to bring down the unemployment rate…)

Lastly, please remember to VOTE November 6, 2012! 

Michael Sesling

Sandy Poritzky

Beating unreasonable deadlines since 1966!
Never a charge for RUSH service!

Archiving – Thinking Beyond the Shoebox!

Archiving Thinking Beyond the Shoebox - ATC Blog

In our inimitable fashion here at ATC (www.audiotranscriptioncenter.com) we’re constantly reading through all those emails we’re receiving from different listservs about any number of things.  The latest one that caught our eyes was about how rapidly technology is changing, and it got us thinking on many levels.  WWOCD?  What Would Our Clients Do?  The article in the latest issue of ComputerWorld.com is written by Lamont Wood, “Fending off the digital dark ages: The archival storage issue.” So this is where transcription of those audio/video collections is key to the longevity of your archives. 

When was the last time you tried to play a 33 rpm record?  When did you find an old floppy disk with information that you couldn’t access?  How about that interview of Aunt Lucy and Uncle Joe in the shoebox that was recorded in 1972 on any sort of media that is now outdated?  Point being, anything you record today will be outdated in 5 years, 10 years, 20 years.  Do you have a plan?  Does your customer have a plan?  We don’t have a plan either, but hey, we got you thinking about it. 

As far as I know no company is currently transcribing on sheepskin, but most everyone who receives their transcripts is storing them digitally.  These digital transcripts are now searchable documents, and then they are usually printed and stored for archival purposes as needed. 

The question again is, how often is digital media changing? 

Plainly, your audio archives will someday be obsolete, and you’ll have to look at ways to convert these collections to a new functional usable format. (How many of you are already doing this every 5, 10, 15 years or so?)  These transcripts of the media content provide the essence of what researchers need!

What will you do to make sure this scenario doesn’t happen to you or your client?  Or will you be retired by that point, and leave the “legacy” to someone else?

The Story of “Farakaveh”

The Story of “Farakaveh” - ATC Blog

Excuse me, which way is “Farakaveh”?

Not too long ago, a member of our production team was reviewing a transcript of an oral history interview before sending the completed work back to the client.

While the work was top-notch as usual, there was one word that just didn’t sit quite right with our eagle-eyed (or nitpicky, however you want to phrase it) production-er and he couldn’t bring himself to press “send.”

Instead, he took a few minutes to listen and re-listen to that little blip of audio but kept hearing the same thing the transcriber had: “Farakaveh.”

Eh, good enough… 

While putting the word in brackets with a question mark to indicate it as a guess and sending off the transcript might have been the next acceptable step, he just couldn’t let it go.

So he brought in some outside expertise, someone with a background that might help decipher the accent of the interviewee — a Jewish, rather Russian and very New Yawk elderly woman.  In this case, that “outside expert” happened to be ATC founder and president, Sandy Poritzky.

Bringing in the “Big Kahuna”

While we couldn’t quite get our top exec to sit down and listen to the audio on a pair of headphones (though we admit it is fun to picture that scenario in our minds), we did the next best thing by putting the printed transcript on his desk.  One quick read and Sandy recognized “Farakaveh” pretty much immediately.  It’s a little neighborhood in Queens, NY.  Probably better known as “Far Rockaway.”

The moral of the story?  

Well, it could be that we go the extra mile (yay!).  Or, it could be that we employ fiendishly detail-oriented and extremely cautious people (they’re our heart and soul!).  Or, it could be that sometimes the big boss actually does have all the answers (shudder).  Mostly, we like to think it illustrates another point: Transcription isn’t always just what you *think* you hear.


We’re not your mother’s transcription service

We’re not your mother’s transcription service - ATC Blog
As we talked about earlier this month, the cassette tapes and reels are just about gone.  Typewriters, of course, have all but completely disappeared (although we do keep one in the backroom just in case of all-out digital failure/crash, call us prepared/paranoid).  And don’t even get Sandy, our very old president, started about the ol’ cylinder Dictaphones



But it’s not just the difference in technology that separates the Audio Transcription Center from the transcription services of yore (mother’s days).  It’s our attitude towards the business and our firm belief that we are only as good as the people we employ.

We strive to be more than just an office where an army of anonymous typists sit and click out transcripts day after day in stuffy cubicles.

Sure, we have a large staff (100 plus!) who all can type a minimum of 75 WPM, and who seem to work tirelessly at our 15 workstations, 24/7/365.  And, okay, there might be some cubicle-esque work areas here… but that’s where the similarities end.


But what we continually take pride in is that all of our staff members have so much more to offer than just speed, accuracy, and efficiency.  They’re brainiacs, to be honest.  At any given time, we employ some of the best and brightest transcriptionists with degrees ranging from BAs, to JD, to PhDs.  To use a classic Sandy-ism, “Since when do Boston’s PhDs have to give up eating?”

Not only do our transcriptionists come to us well-educated (and usually hungry), they also come from a myriad of social and ethnic backgrounds with knowledge sets ranging from science and tech, to popular culture, to art history, to finance, to law, and more.

Working with this large and diverse pool of knowledge and talent allows us to custom match transcription projects to just the right person (or people) for the job.

Add that all together with our ability to handle pretty much any audio file, our streamlined work flow and digital workstations, and that’s what gives us the confidence to offer:

  • Incredibly fast (like blazing) project turnaround
  • 100% Quality Guarantee (or your money back)
  •  Rush service at no extra charge (ever!)


Well, when it comes to transcription at least. And we certainly think we’d all look pretty sharp in capes…