Closed Captions vs Subtitles

Some people refer to closed captions and subtitles interchangeably as they are both the text version of audio in a video. However, there are key differences.

Subtitles involve translating the video's language into an alternate language. You'll see subtitles used in many foreign films and programs. On the other hand, Closed Captions are in the same language as the original audio.


Closed captions are created to allow deaf and hard-of-hearing people to experience the video, so they includes background sounds and speaker changes. Subtitles assume the viewer hears the audio and as a result do not contain the background sounds or notifications for speaker changes. 

Interested in learning more about captions? Check out our Complete Guide to Closed Captioning.

Subtitles and Captions have different goals

Subtitles allow people to watch videos even when they themselves don't speak the language. With the growth of global video platforms, many video owners see the value of adding subtitles making their content available in multiple languages.

The growth of Closed Captions has coincided with the growth of mobile video consumption as more people watch videos in public places with the sound muted. 


Why use Closed Captions?

It's clear that accessibility is a necessity for all. Closed Captions provide creators with a tool that ensures that content is accessible to a broader spectrum of people.  With social media feeds dominating the way that we consume content, it makes sense for businesses to incorporate Closed Captions. Closed Captions mean that your message will still be delivered to audiences, regardless of whether or not sound is on.



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