How to Edit/Remove YouTube Automatic Captions

This article will show you ways how you can edit/remove YouTube automatic captions . About 45% of people watch more than an hour of YouTube videos in a week. However, 80% more people are more likely to watch a whole video when captions are available.

To make content accessible for viewers, Youtube automatic captions help a great deal to increase view time by 12%. YouTube has the speech recognition technology feature that automatically creates captions for your videos.

However, the YouTube automatic captions are incredibly inaccurate. This can affect your branding, credibility, and user experience ditching your brand’s integrity.  

These auto-generated captions on YouTube are created by machine learning algorithms to help air-impaired users to understand the content their watching, therefore the quality of the captions may differ.

We recommend content creators add professional captions first. YouTube is constantly improving its speech recognition technology.

However, the automatic captions might not represent the spoken content well due to mispronunciations, accents, dialects, or background noise. You should at all times review your YouTube automatic captions and edit any parts that haven’t been properly transcribed to correct English sentences.

If you have already uploaded videos into your YouTube channel and you need to add captions into your videos to make your content accessible for your students.

YouTube will generate captions automatically for many videos. At times, it takes a day or two for automatic captions to become available on a video after you must have uploaded it to YouTube. Once you are on the page, you will be able to select them to edit/remove automatic captions on YouTube.

How to Switch to Classic Studio Classic from YouTube Studio beta

In case you use YouTube Studio beta (, note that this automatic caption feature is not yet available. You will need to switch to the Creator Studio Classic. To do that, follow the step below:

  • Sign in to your YouTube account using your Gmail account
  • Tap on your account picture at the top right corner.
  • Choose YouTube Studio (beta). In case you see Creator Studio instead of YouTube Studio (beta), you can kindly skip down to step 9.
  • Tap on the Settings option.
  • Select Creator Studio Classic in the Settings dialog box.
  • Tap on the Save button.
  • Click the Creator Studio Classic option.
  • Tap Skip in the dialog box that is being displayed.
  • Click Video Manager located on the left side. This will show all the videos you have ever uploaded.
  • Tap on the title of the video to which you want to add the captions to.
  • Choose Subtitles/CC.
  • In the “Select video language” dialog box, click Select language and choose English.
  • You can also tap the checkbox for “Default for new upload” if you want to keep English as your default language for all subsequent uploads. 
  • Tap Set language.
  • Then click Add new subtitles or CC.
  • Select English as the language. 
  • Click Create new subtitles or CC.
  • Click Subtitles/CC after a few minutes. The time for the auto-generated caption depends greatly on the length of the video.
  • Once the automatic captions are available, simply select English (Automatic) under “PUBLISHED”.
  • Beneath the “Actions” button, you will see the time-code and captions. Review automatic captions.
  • Although YouTube has accurate captions, the automatic captions might misrepresent the spoken content due to mispronunciations, accents, dialects, or background noise. You must check the automatic captions.Edit/Remove Automatic Captions on YouTube

How to Edit/Remove YouTube Automatic Captions

In case you’re editing captions created automatically, a new caption track that includes your revisions will be generated again. Follow the steps below to edit video captions in YouTube:

  • Log in to YouTube Studio.
  • From the left menu option, choose Subtitles.
  • Tap on the video you will like to edit.
  • For the language option, you will like to edit, in the “Subtitles” column select Edit.
  • For the automatic captions, select Duplicate And Edit >> Continue to overwrite your previous draft. 
  • Now tap on the caption text you want to edit.
  • Click on Publish edits after editing.
  • You will see both the “English” and “English (Automatic)” captions listed under “PUBLISHED”.
  • Remove the “English (Automatic)” captions and select English (automatic).
  • Click the Unpublish button.
  • The edited “English” captions are the only caption option to be made available to people who view your video.
  • Now you can edit/remove automatic captions on YouTube.

How to Remove YouTube Automatic Captions

To disable captions from showing on your video, you can delete them totally from your video and Google Account. Follow the steps below to achieve this:

  • Log in to YouTube Studio.
  • Select Subtitles from the left menu.
  • Select the language you will like to delete in the “Subtitles” column, select Options Delete.
  • You will be asked to verify if you want to delete the captions. Click DELETE CAPTIONS.
  • Immediately the automatic captions are deleted for a video, you can’t turn them back on.
  • That’s it! Now you can edit/remove automatic captions on YouTube.

How to Download and Edit YouTube Caption Files

To edit timestamps, you need to download the caption file using a plain text (.txt) editing program like TextEdit or Notepad to effect the edits and save the changes. Follow these steps below to download and edit captions files: 

  • Log in to YouTube Studio.
  • From the left menu, choose Subtitles.
  • Select the video you will like to edit.
  • Under the Subtitles option, click on EDIT next to the language you want to edit.
  • Tap on Options and select Download subtitles
  • Your web browser will download a file containing the captions track.
  • Edit the file downloaded and save it.
  • Follow the on-screen instructions to upload the captions to your video again.

Once you have uploaded a video to YouTube, you may discover that YouTube’s automatic captions are enabled. Whether you have uploaded your captions or have created captions with YouTube’s transcription interface, the platform will still display auto-captions as an option for your video viewers.

YouTube also admits that their automatic captions are not the most accurate (with one study estimating about 60-70% accuracy), but a wrong automatic caption can also be a detriment to your video’s search engine optimization (SEO) and viewing accessibility.YouTube automatic captions

How to Edit YouTube Caption Timing

It’s possible to edit the timing on your caption tracks directly in the YouTube captions editor or by downloading your caption files directly. Follow the steps below to edit the timing on your YouTube captions:

  • Log in to YouTube Studio.
  • From the left menu, select Subtitles.
  • Click the specific video you will like to edit.
  • For the language, you will like to edit, in the “Subtitles” column, select Edit.
  • Choose a specific line in the caption track panel.
  • Adjust the timing by editing the two timestamp boxes beside the caption track.
  • Once you are done making the changes, click Publish.

How to Replace or Hide Automatic Captions

Are you thinking of totally removing YouTube’s automatic captions? Technically you can’t remove them, but you can always upload your own (more accurate) captions and hide the automatic captions.

Peradventure you added your captions and for some reason, you want to remove this file (maybe it’s not correct, or maybe you uploaded the wrong file by mistake), you can delete the uploaded caption files. Follow the steps below to achieve this:

  • Navigate to your Video Manager and click Edit next to a video.
  • Choose the Subtitles/CC tab.
  • Choose English (Automatic), or the language that’s been used.
  • Tap on Unpublish.
  • Choose Upload from the Actions menu to add a new caption file.

In case you haven’t done so already, you can replace the automatic captions with the caption file you downloaded. It’s possible to upload your caption file, create captions on YouTube, or submit your video for captioning with the use of a third-party vendor to add accessible, compliant, and SEO-friendly captions instead.

I am sure you have been able to edit/remove automatic captions on YouTube with all the procedures listed above. Let’s know if you have been able to edit/remove automatic captions on YouTube at your end in the comment section below.


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