Request to add Spanish subtitles to YouTube videos

It seems that the Python course I’ve just started here is in Spanish but only the UI and questions-answers part. I’ve checked if there was any way to contribute to translate the video subs but I can’t find anything in the Forum nor in the Crowdin projects.

So, I would like to request a Crowdin project to translate the YouTube video subtitles to Spanish, like the one there already is for Chinese subs, and start collaborating in it.

Hi @sdo98

Thanks a lot for your interest in helping add CC for Spanish to our YouTube videos.

Let me clarify the Crowdin project first. This project was created specifically for the Chinese language because we happen to have the videos republished on Bilibili, a platform similar to YouTube popular within mainland China.

I do not think we have plans for adding CC to our videos on our YouTube channel. We have been focusing on internationalized channels on YouTube instead.

YouTube stopped allowing community contributions to CC, which was a helpful feature in the past. Right now we only have the option to upload CC to videos ourselves, but it comes with its own logistical challenge which is getting the original transcript to a platform like Crowdin.

A lot of the videos that we have are very long and exhaustive courses. So in short the effort that would be required to come up with a standard workflow for internationalized CC would be pretty daunting.

Instead, we are working on ways to make the curriculum interactive and localize them instead. An interactive curriculum is more efficient in reinforcing the concepts than videos as you may agree.

So long story short. we think our efforts (including those of translators, and contributors like you) are best used in working on the curriculum.

On a side note, can you confirm that the Auto CC on youtube doesn’t work, for you? I would totally understand if there are nuances to it because I am not a Spanish speaker.


My two cents here: You don’t need to use the crowdsourcing CC feature, you can just sync the subtitles from Crowdin to the YouTube data API.

I’m not familiar with a script that does that automatically but we can consult Crowdin and see if they can help.

Or one of the students would like to take it, this way we can use Crowdin for translating subtitles as well.

And there’s this (I can’t add more than 2 links in a single post yet):
https ://

1 Like

About the efforts for the embedded videos, as someone who was a volunteer for the internationalization efforts, and now staff team for that, my two cents:

The team is developing the new Python curriculum as we speak.
Translating all the videos would require a lot of time and effort, the word count is more than double than the current whole curriculum, YouTube auto-subtitles are not that bad.
All that time and effort is best spent on keeping the curriculum translated, translating or creating articles and creating tutorials in the target language.

I’m not saying translation is a worthy effort but it should be possible, the translators can decide if it’s beneficial or not.

Setting up a project on crowdin also requires effort from the dev team…

If you want to work on a specific video yourself, you could request the subtitle file, and then send it back completely translated.


Thanks for researching this.

We all are on the same page on the “possibility” of doing this. The question for us is more about doing it in a standard way, and hence the deliberation about worthiness.

The most crucial aspect of this is the copious amount of time and effort spent by our volunteer i18n team on helping translate our resources. We have come to channel their efforts in a very effective way, by looking at the usage (from the analytics we have) we get from our resources.

To be clear, what we are saying is yes it’s possible but we do not think it’s the best use of the time of our volunteers right now.

However we welcome independent contributions, so if someone is willing to independently help create those subtitles we may consider adding those to the videos, but it’s highly unlikely we will use Crowdin for it.

1 Like

I fully understand your point yet still, if it’s possible and worthy the translators will come.

Regarding necessity: each individual has a different memorization method so some will benefit from plain text, the rest will prefer an interactive guide and some will prefer the audio/visual channel.
Assuming the interactive courses cover all the curriculum for all the different subjects then most of the students will be fine except those who prefer the audio/visual channel.

Since there is lots of material covered in the video, myself, as a translator, can decide if the effort is right for this kind of material, in case there’s an overlap of both interactive and audio/video the translator can decide where to put his efforts first.

Maybe it’s not the right time for the project to expand that way but learning through videos is still very popular and even if it won’t happen now it’s a very important resource for translation, as in some cases it could be the only learning resource for this language about a certain subject.

Thanks :slight_smile:

1 Like

that’s why one of the goals for each language is to have a youtube in channel in that language!
So to have

  • interactive curriculum (without the videos once the final python curriculum is ready)
  • publication ( for each language)
  • youtube channel completely in target language, like this Bengali youtube channel
1 Like

And that will require less effort than just translating the subtitles?

1 Like

I’m with Yaron with this. Altough I agree an interactive curriculum will be better, in the meantime we can translate de captions which it isn’t that big of a trouble.

Google Translate makes the automatic job quite good but it’s flawed. More than translating the whole captions it would be fixing and correcting the ones we already have machine translated.

I don’t know how long will it take until the interactive curriculum publishes but I think we can all agree that Spanish is one of the most spoken languages in the world so it could be really worth it given the minimum effort it requires to fix CC.

May not be the definitive solution but it’s a patch for what we have now and I think that’s way better than having nothing.

No, but it’s way higher quality content than translated subtitles. We are opinionated about quality here.

Sadly, that’s not how it works, and we have metrics to show why it doesn’t work.

For instance, we have enabled dozens of languages on Crowdin for our basic interactive curriculum and we have had success with only languages that have a dedicated language translation lead or a team.

And these interactive challenges are the core of the learning platform. And in case we were not clear earlier, we are working on literally swapping the video-based python course on its whole with an interactive curriculum, meaning the work of adding subtitles which itself will take a while for the whole curriculum will not be the best use of our volunteers time.

1 Like

And we welcome you to do that one your own for the language that you are interested in. Once you have it ready for say one-two videos, we can do a sanity check and add them to the videos.

If it all looks good, we will get back to you to continue translating on your own for all the videos that you are interested in.

BTW, we have a Discord where you should hang out with fellow translators: Contributors chat room.

1 Like

Crowdin has a video plugin, it should be good enough for context and will surely affect the final product quality.
Recording all the material from the top beats the purpose because if someone can record it he can probably have a competing product and we don’t want to encourage that (or do we?).

Motivation is a magical thing but we can set thresholds in case it’s not enough, I’ve also discovered that proving someone wrong is a very good motivation so preloading the translation with machine translation and disabling it by default can increase translation engagement once the translators will find it :smiling_imp:

For example: only a completely translated subtitles can be successfully submitted and the subtitles will be split per video so it will be very easy to follow and complete a whole course.

You’ll probably find it hard to believe but I fully support interactive challenges and these are much easier to maintain and translate but what are we going to do until all the interactive courses will be ready? What about the less popular content? What about the students that prefer video content?

Can you provide the original subtitles on demand? It could be a nice solution.

I’m more of a Matrix guy but I’ll give it a try :slight_smile: thanks.

Remember that volunteers pick you just as much as you pick them, their motivation is almost not affected by the amount of required work, impact is more important.

What’s wrong with that? Joy, for example, who is managing the Bengali youtube channel has his own channel from before he joined freeCodeCamp.

if you email Beau, if he is not busy, he is happy to provide the file.

If you want to start I have the file for the video tutorial on creating the Discord Python bot. I never finished translating it.

lol, yes, it is - it’s why the workflow for new languages is changing to start with the publication, instead of the curriculum.

Comparing the number of translated languages for curriculum to the number of original video languages shows that it’s too rare and it’s not a common approach.

Cool, is there a way to provide them without Crowdin? Just a list with links? (and possibly Beau’s mail address for submission)

Publication is part of the impact of course but if it’s important enough and the conditions are that if it’s not 100% complete it won’t be published then I’ll probably think twice if I want to start doing it but at least some of the videos (probably the shorter ones) will be translated first by people who want to contribute but don’t have enough time to translate several hours of subtitles.

it would be the .srt that once translated can be sent back to Beau ( - change the text but leave the timestamps unchanged

This is the one for the discord bot with python tutorial:

this is the video:

1 Like

It’s certainly a good path, if there will be enough interest we can check adding that to Crowdin, in the meanwhile, do you mind adding that link to the video comment? (Censor the mail address or add a link to this thread for submission instead).

Thank you :slight_smile:

I don’t understand what you are asking about