The Superior Google Technology

We have a Google Voice number that answers for our NRA Election Volunteer activities. As part of that, it’ll e-mail you what it thinks is a transcription of your voice message. As much as swear at Siri for not getting things right, Google’s technology isn’t any better. There’s a certain state of the art, which isn’t that great, and no one really has advanced much past it. Take this nonsensical transcription:

Hi Kate, My name is Dave Abuser. I let me know. I’m not gonna member. I hope you’re fit with you. My address is XXXX when you both Road, New World. And my phone number is XXXXXXXXXX too. Thanks Kate, we’re gonna get the grass. Bye.

When I listened to the audio, it makes absolutely perfect sense. I’ve XXX’d out parts it got right enough to protect the innocent, but you see how bad Google is at transcription. My actual name is close to, but not Kate, and the person certainly was not an Abuser. I am an NRA member, and so is he, but neither of us are “gonna member.” I am certainly not fit, and if I was, it wouldn’t be with you. Maybe Google just can’t understand the Philly accent very well, but it’s not even remotely unintelligible to someone raised here.

I will say, I’ve already gotten more response this year than in any year I’ve had this “position” since I started a few years back. At least 5 calls since the magazine went out a few days ago. Previously I was lucky to get one or two. So I’ll take Google transcribing “We’re gonna get this guy out,” as “We’re gonna get the grass.” I just hope Google doesn’t share their transcriptions with the DOJ.

UPDATE: Seems I’m not the only one who is amused.

7 thoughts on “The Superior Google Technology”

  1. Same experience. Wish I had thought about a google voice number. Gonnasee about setting up a seperate voice mail box. We had at least 15 calls yesterday (though 5 were from the same guy, who my wife thinks isn’t very stable). Had 4 calls today, and maybe 10 emails.

    From my perspective, I just wish I could have more direction from the NRA about strategy in Virginia and how we are gonna utilize the onrush of volunteers.

  2. One of the funniest things I’ve ever read was the automated transcription on Youtube for an excellent bow hunting video done by a man from rural Alabama. He was quite easy to understand but had a strong accent that resulted in some very humorous subtitles.

  3. The translations are entertaining, but I’m glad I don’t pay for the service.

    My. There are a magazine your last couple of days. I was just contact on there for looks like a touring For the elections coming up, wanted to know if there was anything I can Do you please gimme a call back when you get a chance

    1. This must be the same software all those Nigerian royals use when soliciting help in recovering their lost millions.

  4. Yours was funnier than Unc’s.

    I think they use the same software to automatically subtitle live TV shows.

  5. Maybe Google just can’t understand the Philly accent very well, but it’s not even remotely unintelligible to someone raised here.

    Yeah, I think those Wacky East-Coast accents are probably the problem.

    Sometimes I’m not sure if people from out there are even speaking English… (I kid. A little.)

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