Just another volunteer but if you are absolutely sure it is ilegible, maybe mark it as nothing to transcribe but tag it as illegible. Don't know if the moderators would agree but that way someone who reviews will know to take a stab at it before accepting.
1 person found this helpful
The "nothing to transcribe" box should only be used for pages that are blank, or consist entirely of images or a printed template, for example unused pages of an address book or diary.
If the whole page is illegible, meaning several lines of text that you cannot understand, I would just put a pair of brackets and a question mark ( [?] ) in the transcription box. Whether I would just save or submit for review in that state depends on my certainty that no one else will be able to read it either. Using a bracketed question mark follows the letter of our instructions and lets the transcriber or reviewer after you know that someone else looked at this page but could not read it. Perhaps they will be able to decipher the writing, or maybe they'll feel confident that no one will be able to, knowing that another volunteer was also stumped, and will approve the page. This is one reason I really appreciate our peer-review system, which allows users to build on each others' experiences and skills.
If you have an example page that prompted this question, please share that link as we may be able to provide more detailed guidance. The age-old joke in archives is that the answer to most things is "it depends" and that applies often to transcribing archival documents as well! A good way to tell if something is transcribe-able is to post it in the forum where several volunteers will be able to take a look and give feedback.