CAPTIONING BEHAVIORS

How Much Video is Being Produced and Published?

When respondents were asked how many hours of recorded video content they produce or publish annually, 63% indicated that they're publishing or producing up to 100 hours.

How Much Video Is Being Captioned?

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Website: www.3playmedia.com
Email: info@3playmedia.com
Phone: (617) 764-5189

WHAT WE DO

3Play Media provides closed captioning, transcription, and audio description services to make video accessibility easy. We are based in Boston, MA and have been operating since 2007.

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58% of the State of Captioning respondents said that they caption all or most of their video content, 34% said they caption some or very little of their content, and 8% said that they caption none.

Learn more about current captioning behaviors across all industries.

63% of the 2019 State of Captioning respondents said they record 0-100 hours of video content annually, 13% said they record 101-250 hours, and 24% said they record more than 251 hours.

When respondents were asked how much of their video content they're currently captioning, 58% of respondents said that they caption most or all of their videos.

When respondents were asked how many hours of recorded video content they produce or publish annually, 63% indicated that they're publishing or producing up to 100 hours.

When respondents were asked on which video platforms they are currently captioning, 32% of respondents indicated that they are captioning video hosted on YouTube. Facebook was the second-most used video platform for captioned video at 12%.

On Which Platforms Are Videos Being Captioned?

A giant YouTube bubble depicts that YoutUBe is the most used platform for captioned video. Next to it, a smaller Facebook bubble depicts that Facebook was the second-most used platform for captioned video.

YouTube remains the most-used platform for captioned video for the second year in a row.

Captioning on Social Media

Captions Benefit Everyone

When respondents were asked why they caption videos on social media, 78% of respondents said that they are captioning on social to make their videos accessible.

How Are Captioning Needs Being Addressed?

When respondents were asked how they're currently meeting their organization's captioning needs, 27% said they use a mix of in-house and third-party solutions.

in 2019, 27% of the State of Captioning respondents said that they use a mix of third-party and in-house captioning solutions, 23% said they use only third-party, and 19% said they use only in-house.

Learn more about how automatic captions are being used for video content.

AUTOMATIC CAPTIONS

How Are Automatic Captions Being Used?

When respondents were asked how they use automatic captions, 37% said they start with captions and then edit them, 36% said they don't use automatic captions at all, and 5% only use automatic captions. The remaining 22% indicated other uses of automatic captions.

From 2018 to 2019, the number of respondents who indicated that they do not use automatic captions went from less than 1% to 36%, and it's a good thing!

Automatic captions are typically no more than 80% accurate, which is not accessible.

WHAT'S NEW?

Read the Blog Post

What Type of Video Are Automatic Captions Being Used For?

When asked what types of video they are using automatic captions for, 37% of respondents indicated that they use automatic captions for Educational Videos.

Learn why automatic captions don't cut it for educational video.

Read the Blog Post
When asked what type of videos respondents are captioning, 37% answered educational video, 16% answered social, 16% said marketing, 21% said training, and 10% said other types of video.

Types of video being captioned

Do Automatic Captions Fulfill the Legal Requirement?

We asked respondents if they believe automatic captions fulfill the legal requirement to caption videos.

It was a toss-up.

When asked if they think automatic captions fulfill the legal requirement to caption, 50% said no, 37% said unsure, and 13% yes.

Let’s settle this - do automatic captions fulfill legal requirements?

Read the Blog Post

Learn more about captioning policies and procedures across all industries.

CAPTIONING POLICIES AND PROCEDURES

Clear Captioning Policy for Legal Compliance

When respondents were asked if they have a clear policy for captioning compliance, 37% said "yes" and 27% said "no."

On the other hand, 11% said that a captioning policy was currently being established and 18% said it is on their roadmap.

When asked if respondents had a clear captioning policy, 39% answered yes, 27% answered no, 18% said it's on their roadmap, and 11% said it's currently being established.

Centralized Procedures and Process for Captioning

When we asked respondents if their organization currently has a centralized process or procedure for captioning, 38% said yes and 24% said no.

Centralize Video Accessibility Efforts at Your Organization
38% of respondents said they do have a centralized procedure for captioning, 24% said they don't, 19% have it on their roadmap, and 18% are currently establishing a process.

Confidence with Legal Captioning Requirements

When asked to rate their level of confidence about their understanding of legal captioning requirements laid out by accessibility laws, 42% of respondents said they they are pretty confident, 22% said very confident, 28% said not very confident, and 8% said not very confident at all.

We asked respondents to rate how confident they are that they understand what it means to be in compliance with the closed captioning requirements laid out by accessibility laws.

STATE OF CAPTIONING 2019

Who Was Surveyed?

Why Does It Matter?

Welcome! Thank you for reviewing the third annual State of Captioning report by 3Play Media, which tracks current trends in captioning across many industries. You'll be presented with fresh data focused on captioning behaviors, automatic captioning, captioning policies, and much more. Curious about how this year's data stacks up against last year's data? You'll find comparative analyses throughout this report comparing the results of this year (2019) and last year (2018). Keep your eyes open, too. We've linked to valuable, relevant blog posts that will give you more insight into current captioning trends.

INTRODUCTION

For the 2019 State of Captioning survey, we surveyed 1,007 respondents from multiple industries like higher education, corporate, media & entertainment, government, and  religious organizations. The survey was distributed through email and social media.

The information gathered in the State of Captioning report is valuable because it will give you a better understanding of how organizations and businesses are using captions for their video content. When reading this report, you will discover how much video is being used, why organizations are captioning their videos, and barriers that keep them from captioning.

Are you thinking about becoming an advocate for accessible video at your place of business? The State of Captioning report is a great place to start. It's where you can gather knowledge about captioning trends and brush up on valuable resources which detail important information, like why automatic captions aren't truly accessible.

Table of Contents

CAPTIONING BEHAVIORS

AUTOMATIC CAPTIONS

CAPTIONING POLICIES AND PROCEDURES

CAPTIONING DRIVERS

CAPTIONING BARRIERS

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Learn more about what drives organizations to caption their video content and how they expect their captioning needs to change in the coming year.

Captioning Drivers

Captioning drivers are a powerful thing. The top captioning drivers are the same as they were in 2018.  When asked what they're main driver for captioning was, respondents indicated that legal compliance, engagement, and learning enhancement were the main drivers.

Main Drivers for Captioning

Some Things Stay the Same

How Do You Expect Your Captioning Needs to Change?

2018

In 2018, the majority of the State of Captioning respondents reported that they saw their captioning needs increasing in 2019.

2019

In 2019, respondents reported that, on average, they saw their captioning needs staying the same or increasing moderately next year.

Video camera icon

That doesn't mean video isn't growing, though! Respondents may be seeing a lull in their video production, but experts predict that video will make up 80% of the internet's traffic in 2019.

More Online Video StatsBack to Table of Contents

Learn more about common barriers to captioning in specific industries.

Barriers to Captioning

Barriers to Captioning by Industry

For the education, government agency, and education content creator industries, cost/budget is the top captioning barrier. For Entertainment, web content creators, church/religious broadcast, and private enterprise, resource time is the biggest barrier.

Overall and across all industries surveyed, respondents indicated that cost of captioning and resource time for captioning were the top two barriers. Across the board, 36% said that cost/budget was the greatest challenge, and another 35% said that resource time was the top barrier. 

When asked about main drivers for captioning in 2018, 26% of respondents said that legal compliance was the top driver, 22% said engagement, and 20% said learning enhancement. In 2019, things stayed similar. 28% said that legal compliance was the top driver, 22% said engagement, and 22% said learning enhancement.
The Cost of Captioning

Annual Captioning Budgets

We asked about annual captioning budgets. In 2018 18% of respondents said they had a $0 caption budget whereas in 2019, 29% said they have a $0 caption budget. Budgets are decreasing across the board compared to 2018.

Last year we saw captioning budgets grow significantly, and though we didn't see the same growth this year, 54% of people are still reporting up to a $10,000 captioning budget. Still, 29% of respondents reported having a $0 captioning budget.

If you have a zero-dollar captioning budget, how can you get buy-in for captioning? 

WHAT'S NEW?

How to Get Buy-In for Captioning

How Have Budgets Changed from Last Year?

In 2019, most people reported that their budgets hadn't changed since last year. However, 30% of respondents indicated that their budgets have increased.

Captioning budgets generally haven't decreased since last year. This is good considering the growth of online video and the increasing need for accessibility.

Captioning budgets in 2019 haven't grown much compared to 2018. For example, in 2018, 18% of respondents reported their budgets growing whereas only 11% reported the same in 2019.
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More video is uploaded to the web in one month than TV has created in three decades. (High Q)

78% of people are watching videos online every week. (High Q)

The Era of Video Is Upon Us:

80% of people who use captions aren't deaf or hard of hearing. Captions benefit everyone because they improve dialogue, clarification of terminology, concentration, and engagement. (Ofcom)

WHAT ARE SOME OF THE BENEFITS OF CAPTIONING?

Legal Protection

Better User Engagement

Improved Video SEO

Online video trends are anything but stagnant. Online video is expected to keep growing and with it the need for captioning. Even if your captioning needs are generally staying the same right now, that doesn't mean things could change at any moment. Be sure to stay on top of captioning today so that you're prepared for the growing video usage of tomorrow.

Despite video production reported on this survey being on the lower end, that doesn't mean that online video isn't growing. In general, the amount of video content is still expected to increase significantly.

Despite video production reported on this survey being on the lower end, that doesn't mean that online video isn't growing. in general, the amount of video content is still expected to increase significantly.

ABOUT 3PLAY MEDIA

TAKEAWAYS

That concludes the State of Captioning 2019 report. We hope you learned some valuable information about captioning perceptions and usage and that it will help you on the road to video accessibility. Before you go, we'd like to wrap up this report and send you off with some key takeaways. 

Organizations can no longer rely on automatic captions to make their videos accessible. Don't get us wrong - automatic captions serve as a great starting point, but editing and quality control must follow. With an accuracy rate of no more than 80%, automatic captions just don't cut it, and based on the results of this report, many are beginning to realize that. In 2018, less than 1% of respondents said they don't use automatic captions at all, but that number rose to 36% in 2019! That's a huge step in the right direction, not to mention that another 37% of respondents take the time to edit automatic captions.

CONFIDENCE IN COMPLIANCE

DECREASED USE OF AUTOMATIC CAPTIONS

The number of digital accessibility lawsuits nearly doubled in the course of one year, growing from 814 cases in 2017 to 2,258 cases in 2018. Needless to say, the need to comply with accessibility laws is more important now than ever before. The good news is that 22% of respondents are very confident in their understanding of legal requirements and 42% are pretty confident. The key to avoiding a lawsuit is to know what's expected of your organization and to take steps towards accessibility today.

CAPTIONING FOR REASONS BEYOND THE LAW

RALLY SUPPORT FOR VIDEO ACCESSIBILITY

This year, just like in 2018, more respondents said that their main driver for captioning is legal compliance. Of course people want to comply with accessibility laws, but many also see that captions add value in other areas. User engagement and learning enhancement as a driver came in a close second and third to legal compliance, revealing that motivations for captioning go beyond the law.

In 2019, more people said that their captioning budgets remained the same, and less people indicated that their budgets grew compared to 2018. Zero-dollar captioning budgets increased this year, too, and the amount of those who reported a zero-dollar budget rose by 11% in 2019. Regardless of the benefits of captioning, if neither time nor budget is available, captioning can be an extreme challenge. That's why getting captioning buy-in from your organization is so important. Knowing the facts and rallying support for video accessibility is crucial in gaining buy-in for captioning efforts.

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Those who don't use automatic captions at all when from less than 1% in 2018 to 36% in 2019.
22% of respondents are very confident in their understanding of legal requirements, and 42% are pretty confident.
Why do people caption? To comply with legal requirements, to better the user engagement, and to improve learning experience.
How to get buy-in for captioning? Build awareness, demonstrate ROI, and suggest doing a pilot program.

KEY TAKEAWAYS

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HAPPY CAPTIONING!