Common Mistakes by Speech-to-Text Converters

Common Mistakes by Speech-to-Text Converters

People want fast and efficient, especially when it comes to doing such a grueling task like transcribing. Time, effort, and concentration are required when transcribing bulks or audio or video recordings. Unfortunately, not all people have the time, effort, and focus for this task. This is why speech-to-text converters and free transcription services are a blessing to some – you simply upload your recording and your transcript is automatically generated within minutes.

However, you shouldn’t rely on speech-to-text converters entirely. Though they’ve greatly improved over time, they’re still not perfect and can contain noticeable mistakes. Before you can make use of your automated transcriptions, you need to look for these errors and polish them. Here are common mistakes that can be found in transcripts by speech-to-text converters:

Recognizing foreign pronunciation

Speech-to-text converters will have trouble recognizing foreign languages as well as heavily-accented speakers in an audio or video recording. As a result, misheard transcription will be inevitable. Speech-to-text converters will produce these as unintelligibles or simply inaccurate terms.


Homophones are perhaps the most common mistake by speech-to-text converters. No matter how clear the audio is or how obvious the speech or the speaker is, homophones will be points of failure. 

Homophones are a type of homonyms, referring to words that sound the same but have different meanings and spellings. And since speech transcription technology oftentimes lack the understanding of context and grammar, it’s easy for them to mistake one word for another. Sooner or later, you’ll encounter “there” instead of “their”, “won” instead of “one”, and a lot more. 

Wrong names, places, or brands

Some people’s names may be influenced by various cultures and races, therefore, not the generic names speech conversion engines are accustomed to. Names of places may sound different or unusual, and brand names might be spelled differently or are stylized in a specific way. In these cases, speech-to-text converters will have trouble transcribing these and can result in several errors. 

Missed or wrong punctuations

Punctuations are not the topmost priority when it comes to automatic speech transcriptions. Because of this, missed punctuations or wrong punctuations are typical. Now you may think that punctuations are insignificant, but they can change the context, meaning, or the tone of the speaker. This can also lead to run-on sentences on your transcription, which can be difficult to read. 

Simple spelling errors 

There’s also a huge chance of seeing simple spelling errors when using speech-to-text converters. These simple spelling errors can be extra letters, misplaced letters, or excessive words that may or may not be connected to the dialogue in the audio or video. 

How can you correct these mistakes?

No matter how much you may want to prevent these mistakes from happening, it’s unavoidable for speech-to-text converters and other speech transcription technology to get a couple of things wrong. It will be your responsibility to make sure it’s accurate. Here are several things you can do to correct these mistakes and polish your transcriptions:

  • Use an online spell checker or grammar checker.
  • Manually proofread and double-check everything.
  • Hire an editor.
  • Avail editing services and have professionals do it for you.