As web video increases in popularity it is becoming more and more evident that closed captions are a necessity, not only to make videos accessible to the hearing impaired but also to aid in translation so that people around the world can watch video clips, auto-translated into their own native languages. YouTube understands the growing importance of closed captioning and has teamed up with a number of vendors that can help content creators add captions to their videos. Read on for a list of 12 YouTube Ready vendors that can help you make your videos more accessible with closed captions.
Not only do captions make your YouTube videos more accessible, but they also make your videos more discoverable. As web video becomes more and more prominent, it will be increasingly important to add captioning to your content. YouTube has compiled a list of YouTube Ready caption vendors. All of the YouTube Ready vendors are certified by the Described and Captioned Media Program (DCMP) and adhere to the following criteria:
- Have passed a DCMP caption quality evaluation
- Have a YouTube channel as well as a website where content creators can learn more about their captioning services
- Have agreed to post their rates for YouTube related services
There are currently twelve YouTube Ready vendors. Check them out below, as well as their informational videos. Unfortunately, from most of these videos it is clear that these companies deal in captioning and not so much in video production value. Additional information, such as pricing, can be found on each vendor’s website.
Though the rest of our list is in alphabetical order, VITAC gets a special place up front because they’ve got the best promotional video, as well as one of the clearest understandings of why captions are so great for YouTubers. On their site, they write about how YouTube captions not only make your videos more accessible and searchable, but also enhance the audio by making it clearer. VITAC offers 100% verbatim captioning as well as transcription for YouTube videos. Check out their great tongue twister video below.
Aberdeen Captioning, Inc.
Aberdeen Captioning provides a variety of services, including premium captions, budget captions, transcription and multi-language captioning in pretty much every language around the world. They charge according to the length of your video. Matthew Cook, one of the founders of Aberdeen Captioning, says, “We look at each project as if it was our own and that really is what Aberdeen Captioning is all about.”
Aegis RapidText has been in the captioning industry since 1988. They pride themselves on their attention to detail, professionalism and quick turnaround. They provide captioning services and transcription services in English, as well as in all languages. They also have a pretty goofy video providing information about their services, which you can watch below.
Broadway Video Digital Media
Broadway Video has been in the video production business since 1979. They deliver quality captioning services for TV, Internet and film. Their YouTube captioning services offer one to two day turnarounds and provide captioning as well as translation services.
Caption House is a caption and subtitling service located in Miami. Interestingly enough, they don’t offer any information about their YouTube captioning services on their website. However, they are still a part of the YouTube Ready vendor list. Caption House offers captioning, subtitling and transcription services in English, Spanish and Portuguese. You can learn more from the video below. The production quality is not great, but the captions are perfect.
Caption and Subtitle Services
Caption and Subtitle Services has been involved in captioning since 1995. They offer English and Spanish services, as well as other foreign languages, including Asian fonts. YouTube content creators can easily upload videos in .mp4 format to the company’s FTP website for captioning services.
CaptionMax has been in the industry for about 20 years. They provide captioning services for YouTube and the rest of the Internet, as well as for traditional media sources. They provide captioning and translation services and pride themselves on their accuracy and dead-on captioning and subtitling timing. They provide realtime captioning, audio description, as-broadcast scriptwriting and more.
CPC Computer Prompting and Captioning
CPC has been the leading closed captioning provider since 1986. They patented the world’s first and only software closed captioning encoder and their service is used to caption Obama’s YouTube videos. The company offers a variety of services to YouTube users. Their eCaptioning service transcribes and creates captions automatically. They provide captioning as well as translation services.
Critical Mass Productions
Critical Mass Productions provides YouTube Ready captioning in English. They offer untimed video transcripts as well as timed caption files. They charge on a per video basis and have a four to six business day turnaround.
eCaptions is a full service captioning agency. They provide competitive rates and offer transcription and captioning services for YouTube videos. All you have to do is send eCaptions the link to your YouTube video and they will create a caption file for you.
Elrom provides both Budget Friendly and Professional Grade captioning for YouTube videos. The company subtitles, captions and dubs content. YouTube content creators can upload their videos directly to the Elrom website for captioning.
Video Caption Corporation
Video Caption Corporation has provided captioning, subtitling and related services since 1997. They offer captioning for English-language videos as well as English transcription services and claim to offer one of the fastest turnarounds in the industry. Content creators can upload their videos for captioning to the company’s FTP server.
When you are looking for a vendor to caption your YouTube videos it is important to do your research. Don’t just choose one of these twelve vendors at random. Contact a few companies that sound good to you and ask them what they can offer you. Remember that sometimes paying a little bit more is worth it for great customer service, a fast turnaround and quality work. If you can find a great captioning vendor then you can use them in the future to make all of your videos more accessible, searchable and clear.
Have you worked with any of the caption vendors in our list? What was your experience like?