Türkiye's parliament to introduce AI assistance for stenographers

Türkiyes parliament to introduce AI assistance for stenographers
Date: 24.10.2023 15:00

In a move to modernize its legislative processes, the Grand National Assembly of Türkiye (TBMM) is gearing up to introduce artificial intelligence (AI) support for its stenographers.

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Traditionally, stenography, the practice of rapidly transcribing spoken language into written text using shorthand notation, has been carried out using a specialized machine known as a steno-typewriter. In Türkiye, stenography training is exclusively provided by the parliament, and stenographers work solely within the Parliament.
According to Muhsine Çevik, head of parliament's Stenography Services, this transformation comes as part of the ongoing TBMM Information Transcript System Project, developed in collaboration with The Scientific and Technological Research Institution of Türkiye (TÜBİTAK). The project's primary objective is to enable AI to recognize the voices of parliament members and transcribe their speeches into written text. 
Çevik explained that the AI system would offer advanced capabilities, stating, "In the Transcript Information System, after the speaker delivers their speech, our stenographers will now work like expert stenographers, reviewing the transcribed text." This change would streamline the process and improve accuracy, which is crucial in the context of parliamentary proceedings.
The project has been in development for approximately 1.5 years, and Çevik described the multifaceted approach to its implementation. She highlighted the importance of thorough checks in the transcription process, mentioning that "Our experts will review it through a computer, followed by our deputy president." This ensures that the transcriptions meet the highest standards of accuracy.
Despite the incorporation of AI, Çevik noted that there would always be a need for human stenographers during sessions where emotions run high and debates become contentious. "AI cannot comprehend heated arguments," she said. "In case of disputes, we cannot utilize standard audio recordings because the voices overlap, making it impossible to distinguish between them. This is where stenographers come into play."


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