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Subtitles for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing

Recent legislation in Scotland and abroad requires many more video products to be made accessible to everyone, including the deaf and hard of hearing. Accessibility also allows film-makers to reach a whole new audience with minimum effort. For some, it is a criteria to satisfy to be able to access certain funding and support.

At Screen Language we believe in inclusion, and we work hard to produce high quality Subtitles for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (SDH).

Subtitles for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (SDH), or closed captions, are created by adding to the subtitles track information that is not accessible to deaf or hearing impaired audiences. This can include background sounds and noises and stylistic features such as name tags, colour coding and positioning that help the viewers identify the speakers.

The criteria of relevance is used to decide whether including or omitting some information, for example the fact that a certain character is speaking with a particular accent or intonation, or in case dialogue needs to be shortened to fit in the space and time available. Whenever possible, the clients are involved in this process, as these decisions can affect the way the film is perceived by its audience.

We strive to keep constantly up-to-date with the changes of this rapidly evolving sector and to ensure that our subtitles are fully compliant with the current requirements for accessibility including Creative Scotland, British Film Institute and Ofcom requirements for Disability Access Materials.

Screen Language can currently produce subtitles in a wide variety of formats including .srt, .ssa, .stl (EBU), .vtt, ttml, .smil, .xml. Subtitles can be text-based or image-based. Image-based subtitles are larger folders that can be imported into editing software such as Final Cut Pro, Adobe Encore and DVD Studio Pro.

Did you know? There are more than 11 million (one in six) people with some form of hearing loss in the UK alone (source: Royal National Institute for Deaf People).

Subtitle Services Enquiry

Please contact us via email (or use the handy form) to find out more about costs and turnaround time.

To get started, we will need to know the duration of the film you want to subtitle.

If you have a trailer, website or excerpt of the film on-line, please send us the links so we can check them out.

To help us work out the best product and quote for your needs, it would be great if you could also tell us:

  1. Type of film: documentary, fiction, commercial, advertisement, public awareness video, etc.
  2. Intended audience: UK or US deaf audience, viewers in a public space with no access to the soundtrack, etc.
  3. Format you need the subtitles in, or intended screening mode: VOD, DCP, DVD, etc.
  4. Whether you have a dialogue list available – the cost will be lower if you do!
  5. Whether the video has previously been subtitled – the cost will be lower if it has!