NCI Voice Writing Achieves 99% Accuracy

Posted by on September 1, 2013 in NCIblog | 0 comments

September 1, 2013


NCI Voicewriting Achieves 99% Accuracy




NCI was formed in 1979 to make the vision of closed-captioning, proposed by PBS,

the National Bureau of Standards, and others, a reality. NCI introduced closed

captioning in 1980 using court reporters and steno machines. A lot of hard work

followed as NCI developed software, selection criteria, curricula for steno

captioning, dictionaries, procedures and techniques. Much of this knowledge

base has been adopted by other companies who followed NCI into the captioning

industry. Steady progress was made and by 1982, NCI had consistently achieved

95% accuracy. Since 1992, NCI’s steno captioners have routinely achieved 99%+

accuracies on all types of programming. A span of 10 years was needed to bring

accuracies from 95% to 99%.


Voice Writing


In 2002, NCI was captioning 68,000 hours of programming a year, and the number

of hours was growing rapidly due to FCC mandated coverage. To recruit sufficient

numbers of new captioners, NCI began to perfect voice writing – captioning using

speech recognition technology rather than steno machines. This task was as

difficult as the development of steno captioning in the 1980s, but in order to

access a much larger labor pool, NCI began to develop the technology, while

continuing to further refine steno captioning.

The development of NCI Voicewriting paralleled the development of steno

captioning, requiring software, selection criteria, curricula for voice writing,

dictionaries, procedures and techniques. Because the software component was

so critical and so advanced, NCI acquired a technology company to develop

captioning systems based on speech recognition. After 4 years in development,

NCI Voicewriting achieved greater than 96% accuracies in 2006.


NCI Voicewriting achieves 99% accuracy in 2013


NCI Voicewriting achieved 95% accuracy internally in 2005 and reached the 99%

mark in 2013. This was accomplished in a span of 8 years because NCI

Voicewriting was able to use NCI’s 20 years of steno captioning development to

complement our proprietary voice writing software programs. In the past five

years, NCI has captioned a quarter million hours of programming using voice

writing at well above industry average accuracies of 98%.


Today’s accuracies in real-time captioning

NCI   Average Industry Average
Steno 99.4% 98.0%
Voice 98.4% 95.0%

Jill Toschi, NCI’s Vice President for Operations, states, “NCI Voicewriting exceeds

industry standards by combining NCI’s vast closed captioning experience with

custom-tailored, state-of-the-art technology. NCI’s highly trained and

professional Voicewriters, who are committed to maintaining NCI’s superior

quality standards, are the key to achieving accuracies in excess of 99%.”


For additional information, contact :

Juan Mario Agudelo

National Director of Sales and Marketing

703-917-7619 (v)