Edit Menu: Labels

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Items in the Labels  cascading Edit menu enable you to add and edit labels.


Click, or hover, on any menu item in the image to read about that command.  Skip the image
File MenuEdit MenuSelect MenuView MenuTransport MenuTracks MenuGenerate MenuEffect MenuAnalyze MenuHelp MenuExt-Bar MenuExt-Command MenuMenu BarUndoes the most recent editing actionRedoes the most recently undone editing actionRemoves the selected audio data and/or labels and places these on the Audacity clipboardRemoves the selected audio data and/or labels without copying these to the Audacity clipboardCopies the selected audio data to the Audacity clipboard without removing it from the projectInserts whatever is on the Audacity clipboard at the position of the selection cursor in the project, replacing whatever audio data is currently selected, if anyCreates a new track containing only the current selection as a new clipFor more "advanced" removal of audioCreate or remove separate clips in the audio trackThese commands are to add and edit labelsLabeled Audio commands apply standard Edit Menu commands to the audio of one or more regions that are labeledThe Metadata Editor modifies information about a track, such as the artist and genrePreferences let you change most of the default behaviors and settings of AudacityBrings up a dialog box showing all of your labels in a keyboard-accessible tabular viewCreates a new, empty label at the cursor or at the selection regionCreates a new, empty label at the current playback or recording positionPastes the text on the Audacity clipboard at the cursor position in the currently selected label trackWhen a label track has the yellow focus border, if this option is on, just type to create a labelEdit-LabelsMenu.png
Mac users: Ctrl = and Alt = Option. So, for example, Ctrl + Alt + V = ⌘ + Option + V


Edit Labels

This command invokes the Labels Editor which lets you add or remove Label Tracks and edit their labels entirely using the keyboard, so is particularly useful for visually impaired users.

It brings up a dialog box showing all of your labels in a keyboard-accessible tabular view. Handy buttons in the dialog let you insert or delete a label, or import and export labels to a file. See Labels Editor for more details.


Add Label At Selection Ctrl + B

This command will place a new label at your current cursor position or selection. See this page for more details.

Creates a new label at the position of the editing cursor or selection region. You can then title the label by typing with the keyboard and hitting "Enter" when you're done. When you click in the label later it will recall the position of the editing cursor or selection at which the label was created. See Label Tracks for more information on how to use label tracks.


Add Label At Playback Position Ctrl + M

This command will place a new label at your current playback or recording position. See this page for more details.

Like Add Label at Selection but the label is added at the current position during playback or recording.

On a Mac the shortcut for this command is (⌘ + .).


Paste Text to New Label Ctrl + Alt + V

Pastes the text on the system clipboard (or text from a label stored in the Audacity clipboard) to a new label at the cursor or region position in the currently selected label track. If there is no selection in the label track a point label is created. If a range is selected in the label track a range label is created. A new label track is created if none exists.

The most recent text cut or copied to either clipboard is pasted. If you have copied or cut a label to the Audacity clipboard, the text of that label will be pasted. If you have cut or copied text to the system clipboard from an application other than Audacity, that text will be pasted.

In the example below, the text "Question 1" was copied from a word processing document then the "Paste Text to New Label" command was executed.

EditMenuLabels AddLabel 1.png
EditMenuLabels AddLabel 2.png


Type to Create a Label (on/off)

When the label track has the yellow focus border as in the image above you can, if preferred, just type to create a label containing that text rather than first using the menu or shortcut to create the label. This default behaviour can be turned off, if required, in Tracks Preferences by unchecking the "Type to create label".

  • When enabled (default), if there is already a label track that has the yellow focus border, you do not need to use "Add Label at Selection" or its Ctrl + B shortcut to create a new label. Just type your required label text to create a new label at the position of the editing cursor or selection region. If the label track does not have focus, use the Up or Down arrow keys on your keyboard to move focus into the label track.
  • When this preference is disabled, typing never creates a label in the focused label track. This lets you use shortcuts (for example, transport shortcuts to play audio related to the editing cursor or selection) without accidentally creating an unwanted label. When you want to create a new label, use "Add Label at Selection" or Ctrl + B or "Add Label at Playback Position" Ctrl + M.
Even if "Type to Create a Label" is enabled, you cannot type to create a new label:
  • if audio is playing, recording or paused, and the cursor or selection is at the same position in waveform and label track
  • if there is already a label at the exact same position in the label track.
You can still use Ctrl + B to add a new label even if it's at the same position, or Ctrl + M to add a label at the playback, recording or paused position.

You can also create a label at the same position by moving focus to and typing in another label track, as long as there is no label yet at that position, and if audio is playing, as long as the cursor or selection in the waveform is at a different position.




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