What is Rev.com? Can You Earn Money As Transcriptionist or Captioner?

Should you consider transcribing and captioning on Rev.com?

Are you looking for work online but don’t know where to turn with all the get rich quick schemes, surveys, and blogging opportunities you read about every day.

There are other work from home jobs available but finding something legitimate can be hard. This review of Rev.com might give you some ideas of alternative work.

There are good and bad reviews to be found online for Rev, so in this review, I’ll go over what you need to know to get a good idea if this might be for you.

Rev.com review


Pros: Free to join, work from home when you like, regular weekly payments, variety of projects
Cons: Admission test quite hard, your account can be terminated if you don’t meet the quality grades, poor pay
Owner: Jason Chicola
Price: Free to join
Website: https://www.rev.com
My opinion: A legitimate work opportunity that could be a good choice for you if you have typing skills and you’re ready to work for low pay.

What is Rev.com?

Founded in 2010 and based in San Francisco, Rev offers companies transcription services for audio or video files, captions for videos, foreign subtitles for videos and translation of documents or websites.

For freelancers, Rev offers job opportunities as transcriptionist, captioner or translator. In this review, we will look at the transcription and caption services.


Who is Rev for?

If you think you can convert a spoken English audio file into a written document, add captions (written chunks of text at the appropriate time slots) to videos or movies or translate documents into another language then this could be for you.

You will need a desktop or laptop computer with working speakers or a headset and an internet connection. You will need a good knowledge of English and it will be an advantage if you are a fast and above all accurate typer.

Many transcriptionists also use a foot pedal. This will help you control the audio or video playbacks, making your transcriptions faster. But for the moment if you’re just starting you don’t need to consider this.

Being a patient person will also help. The audio files or videos may be hard to understand, so you will have to listen to them several times before you understand.

Applicants can be from any country as long as they are able to open a PayPal account to be paid.

You don’t need any experience for the transcription or captioning work but there is a screening test. Once accepted you can set your own schedule to work when you want.


The Application Tests


The test is designed to give the applicant an idea of what working as a transcriptionist is really like and Rev will see if you have the accuracy required.

There is a grammar test, a short writing assignment and then after a short guide on the best transcribing practices, you have to transcribe a short audio file.

To transcribe the audio file you have to use the Rev Online Transcription Editor. There is a small learning curve but everything is explained and you can return to the guide as needed.

Rev transcription editor

When you are accepted there is a tutorial to complete then you can start working and earning money.


The start of the test is similar to the transcription test but you have to caption a video which is a little more complicated than just doing a transcription. In addition to transcribing you have to add the captions in the correct place, you will use Rev’s caption editor to complete the test.

Once you have been accepted after the first test you have two more videos to caption. You will hear quite rapidly from Rev whether you have been accepted or not.

Apparently, Rev only accepts about 12% of captioners. One of the complaints I have often seen online is that the would-be captioners get no feedback about the mistakes they have made.

I can understand it is annoying for the people applying not to know why they have not been accepted but if Rev had to provide feedback for everyone perhaps they would have to charge a fee to cover their expenses. This wouldn’t be well received either!

The video below shows you how captioning works.

Once You’re Accepted

When you have been admitted as a transcriptionist or captioner you can accept work almost as you like. The subject of the audio files, the pay, and deadlines are made clear so you can choose jobs that are a good fit for you. You work when you want, the hours you choose, and you are never forced to take any job.

Typing is only part of this work.

You may think typing what you hear isn’t too difficult. But it’s not that simple. Some audio files or videos may not be easy to understand, there may be foreign accents or poor audio quality.

You may have to go back over certain sections several times to get it right. Judging from the comments online this is often the case especially with the shorter videos or audio files you can transcribe when you are starting.

You may have to use Google to research any terms you’re not familiar with. You will have to proofread accurately. Having a good understanding of grammar and a decent vocabulary is a necessity.

There is also a time deadline. When you take a job you must meet the deadline or you risk having the job taken from you and the work you have put in will be lost. This may seem harsh but is to ensure the customer receives the work in the specified delay.

After you submit a job, you can go back to the jobs list to find the next audio file or video that interests you!

Getting Paid

You get paid every Monday via PayPal based on all the audio files you transcribed or videos you captioned in the prior week.

According to Rev.com, the top transcriptionists earn $1500 per month and the top 5% earn $900 per month. The average Rev transcriptionist earn $156 per month.

The rate of pay for a transcriptionist is $0.40 to $0.65 per audio minute and for a captioner $0.40 to $0.75 per video minute. For a 10 minute project with pay of $0.50 per minute, you would earn $5.00.

However, you will spend a lot longer than 10 minutes working on the project. It will probably take you more than 1 hour when you start but you will get faster as you gain experience. The speed of your transcription will vary depending on several factors – audio quality, accents, subject and number of speakers.

There are lots of remarks online about having to work long hours for relatively little pay. Even people who enjoy the platform grumble about the rates of pay. Don’t go into this thinking you will be able to earn a lot of money.

Rev has 3 tiers of transcriptionists and captioners.

  • Rookie Level – you will start at Rookie level. Your first transcriptions will be reviewed and graded. You will work on shorter transcription jobs. You will see the graders feedback so you can improve your work.
  • Revver Level – if you receive good grades at Rookie level you will be promoted to Revver level, where you will earn 25% more than the Rookie Level. You will be able to select the work you want and will continue to receive feedback.
  • Revver+ Level – you will be able to choose transcription jobs before the Revvers. At this level, you can take the Graders test. If successful you will be paid to assess the work of others.

The Grades

Rev grades

The grades are based on 2 categories:

  • accuracy – correctly transcribing the words and also who said them
  • formatting – communicating the words in a way that is easily readable

The categories have major and minor errors.

For example – precision, using the wrong words or the addition or omission of content are major errors. Spelling or the use of the inaudible tag when you don’t understand certain words are minor errors.

There are many comments to be found from people who have had their accounts closed after having grades not quite up to standard and also complaints about inconsistent grading.


Rev Help and Support

Rev provides a resources section with tutorials, editor demo, transcription style guide and some practice jobs.

The forum is probably the best resource for getting help and finding information. One part of the forum that transcriptionists find very useful is the “lend an ear ” section. When you have some words you don’t understand in your job you can ask the forum for help. You will usually get help very rapidly.

Rev also has a support section with FAQs and you can submit a ticket if you can’t find what you’re looking for.


What Their Freelancers Are Saying?

There are many commentaries or reviews about Rev.com. Overall the feedback is fairly neutral with one point that comes up very often – the poor rate of pay.

Many people enjoy the fact that you can work when you like and you are paid on time. The committed Revvers also seem to enjoy the work and find it interesting.

You can see some of the reviews on Glassdoor.com or Indeed.com.


My Final Opinion

Rev is definitely a legitimate option to earn money online. If you need money quickly, you have nothing to invest and you have the necessary skills this could be a good option.

You can’t consider this as a full-time job as the pay is not good enough unless you put in many hours. Even then your future isn’t secure as if you have some bad grades your account may be deactivated.

Worth trying as a side hustle if you’re ready to work for a few dollars per hour. You go into it knowing the biggest drawbacks.

An Alternative

If you’re not desperate to earn money quickly and you have a few dollars to spare I recommend starting your own online business. That’s the road I took and I now have a business that earns me a passive income every month.

To achieve this I followed an online training course that offers all the tools and support you need to get started. You can even join for free to see if it’s a good fit for you.

If you’ve had any experience with Rev.com or you can recommend any other transcription platforms that could be good for our readers, let us know in the comments area below.


  1. Dave January 18, 2018
    • Peter January 21, 2018
  2. Anita Alig January 17, 2018
    • Peter January 18, 2018
  3. Murphy G January 17, 2018
    • Peter January 21, 2018

Leave a Reply