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Byword: A blog by and for the TW community

New Web Server in British Columbia Protects Data, Opens Doors

To meet the requirements of privacy legislation in British Columbia, TypeWell collaborated with Post-Secondary Communication Access Services (PCAS) to establish a new Canadian Web Linking server in Vancouver, B.C. This enables transcribers in Canada to use TypeWell to stream data to Canadian clients so the data never resides on TypeWell’s U.S. servers...

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Call for Volunteers! 2016 TypeWell Conference Planning Committee

We're due for another TypeWell conference, don't you think?

Volunteer for the Conference Committee! We hope to schedule the next big professional development event for early Summer 2016. Organizers will develop a conference theme, secure a location, raise funds, find sponsors, develop a call for proposals, manage a selection committee, schedule sessions, organize catering, and all of the other logistics that go into planning a successful event...

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Deducting Home Office Expenses

Shameless plug: TypeWell is co-hosting a webinar with a Certified Public Accountant from Independent Contractor Tax Advisors on Wednesday, April 22, 2015, Tax Strategies for Independent Contractors (free webinar)

While we are on the subject of deductible expenses for transcribers, here is one that applies primarily to those of us working remotely from our homes. We can deduct a portion of our rent or our mortgage payment, provided we have a room in our home or apartment specifically dedicated to our jobs.

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Deducting Job-Related Educational Expenses

Sometimes the answer to a question we receive from a transcriber can benefit others as well, so we’re sharing this one with you.

Q: Can any of the courses taken through TypeWell's LEO (Learning & Enrichment Online) be deducted on my taxes?

A: Yes, you can deduct the cost of continuing education courses — whether taken through TypeWell or elsewhere — with just a few stipulations...

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A Transcriber Among Students

The TypeWell transcriber's professional Code of Ethics prohibits the transcriber from participating in the class discussion or activities. This can create a distance between transcribers and the rest of the class — a distance that some students and instructors want to bridge.

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Coordinator Spotlight: Tina Cowsert at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

I interviewed Tina Cowsert recently about her process of acclimation to her new position as Access Specialist for Deaf/HOH and Blind/Low Vision students at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. 

Disability Resources and Educational Services (DRES) is a bustling and extensive department, and I was aware that TypeWell was likely only a small portion of Tina's position, particularly in the first few weeks, so I checked in with her about two months after her start date for this interview.

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On-Demand Transcribing: communication access, whenever you need it

Even for transcribers who have relatively stable part-time or full-time transcribing gigs, there are still gaps where the work (and the money) slows down. Transcribers aren’t earning income during holiday breaks, exam weeks, or when students cancel services due to illness. To fill in those gaps, one could simply hop onto a website like Shiftboard to pick-up available short-term jobs.

But in an interview with the New York Times, one economist said, "Can you imagine if this turns into an economy where everyone is doing piecework at all odd hours, and no one knows when the next job will come, and how much it will pay? What kind of private lives can we possibly have, what kind of relationships, what kind of families?”

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Transcribing for My Dad

My father is an active, funny, interested (and interesting!) 76 year old man. He's also late-deafened. Three years ago, when he and my mom were celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary at a couple of different parties with friends and family, I transcribed the events for him.

I was pretty focused on my screen, but once in awhile I glanced up and saw...

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