Video Meeting Transcription

Just Say No.

That sums up my experience of outbound video calls and the wave of 'AI' automated video meeting transcription services.

Even with internal meetings, I've seen transcription cause disengagement.

Google Meets has a remarkable live transcription. People tend to be amazed when first encountering it. Yet pretty soon, the disparity between their bot's written word, and the nuance of meaning, the emotion behind the words, and its actual force of priority dulls initial excitement.

Then there's those external meetings.

Despite the hype, I'm yet to witness a 'client' accede to a 'vendor' request to record their video session, let alone make a live transcription of it.

And there's reasons for this. From both sides, it's tricky terrain.

For all its apparent stunning time-saving promise, audit trail creation and summary production, there's a trio of downsides which, I suggest, outweigh the allure.

Here's a succinct threesome of pointers as to why problems emerge.

Privacy, IP and passivity.


You never recorded in-person meetings or phone calls, so why now do so for video calls?

People - specifically here, buyers - want to keep themselves to that moment.

Whatever the assurances to the contrary, where might their most personal data, in terms of unscripted remarks, end up?

Recording seen as something that only happens in a police station. And who wants to turn a pitch atmosphere into that of an interrogation room when under arrest?


Our Intellectual Property is often all we've got. How we think, unique to us. Sacred. If Coke's Ingredient X were published, the damage may be terminal.

The dangers - however slim - of confidential company information being captured and then shared loom large for those keen to stay a step ahead or in the shadows.

This with also a knock-on effect of potentially having what you want to make the killer point, being diluted. As these tools can keep all your slides and shared screens with commentary attached. When you may (often) want to a key, singular, stark message to soak in, what can happen is it gets lost among the fog of all the noise that surrounded it at is you delivered.


Well, there's no way of sugar coating this. But recording makes people less engaged in real-time. And on occasion, lazy.

I've only seen this in internal meetings [note, I do not permit my clients to record sessions with me]. Yet there's a noticeable reduction in frisson around proceedings when recording is on. Energy flows weakened. And I'd say, results are dimmed.

:: :: ::

Overall, with all-things AI burning through the workplace psyche, there will be pressures to engage in the power live meeting transcriptions and associated full recording for posterity could bring.

If pushed to ask it of your prospects, pushback with the facts that meeting quality and outcome will suffer.

If pushed by your prospects, pushback with the IP angle. As it could well smell rather nastily of someone wanting to pass on your nuggets to a different, preferred supplier or forearm those wishing to see an alternative direction taken.

Finally, I'd say that there remains a potent edge to gain from summarising the meeting your way, old school.

One of my frequent steers these past couple o' years of mass zoomin' adoption, is to make a note of every question your prospect asks on a video call.

Then at the very least, you can afterwards send a summary of questions asked, with answers confirmed.

It's less work than you may think. And crucially, it makes them feel listened to.

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