April 24, 2019 By David Appelt

The Universality of Digital Video and the Need for Closed Captions

Your Video Now Lives in the Digital Age. The Digital Age still needs closed captions.

If your organization doesn’t use traditional broadcast television, it is easy for subtitles or closed captions to become an afterthought in your production. You might also be tempted to neglect closed captioning, thinking that the digital age is shrinking its need in the marketplace. However, the world where your content is competing is a world where closed captions and subtitles are necessary, if not more necessary than ever—according to multiple digital media usage studies.

Growing use of mobile video and enduring subtitle use

Our world today is constantly shrinking. But digital video is expanding. Even small budget productions can find international reach. Today, your media is more mobile than ever. Gone are the days when your audience could only see your show if they were in their living room with their television set. According to a study by Promo, people watch roughly 38 hours of video content every week—nearly 40% of which is streamed, mainly on mobile devices. People can (and do) use video content all day long. They may be at the office, in a plane, at the gym, or in a waiting room. We are people who love our video!

Closed captions or subtitles are not only for the hard of hearing community. When in noisy or public environments, where today’s audience often finds itself, people turn to subtitles and captions. Nearly 44% of people watch more than 5 videos per day, and while watching those videos 44% of people use subtitles and closed captions while watching! In a study by Deloitte, it’s reported that people under the age of 51 average 12% of all video viewing on their smartphone alone. More than ever before, your video is accessible and on-the-go with the viewer.

No matter where they find themselves, added accessibility from closed captioning and subtitles ensures that your media is never out of reach.

If almost half of your digital audience use your subtitles and closed captions, then you need to be there with quality captioning for half of your audience! Accurate, professional subtitling means that your fans won’t have any speed bumps when watching your show, no matter where they are watching. Don’t neglect your closed captions or subtitles—and don’t underestimate the value they bring to your audience (or your potential audience).

For more information on digital video viewing habits, look at these resources:

David Appelt

David is our special projects manager and part of the StationDrop team. He is a central Ohio native and Capital University grad with a media and communications background. David is here to make sure that they stay on track while providing as much value to you as he can. Over the years, David has picked up experience in many creative realms: writing, audio, video, and design. After work, David is probably writing, serving at his church, spending time with his family, or (trying) to play golf.

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