Closed Captions and Subtitles on Netflix Instant View!

NO! Sorry, Netflix still hasn’t figured out how to provide captioning for online viewing of their instant view features.

Despite having millions of PAYING customers, Netflix’s Deaf and Hard of Hearing customers, along with those who will become deaf or hard of hearing in time, along with children, and english as a second language viewers who use captions to help learn to read english, are not worthy of being provided with access to the dialogue for the instant view features on Netflix – at least not for another year.

Netflix excuse?

“The technologies we use for streaming do not yet adequately support closed captions”.

But, somehow, many FREE online videos do have captioning options. We have been able to view optional captions on Google video for years, and more recently, Hulu.

Even YouTube added options for captioning videos (see the above “Ballad of the Barefoot Runner” example), and the television network websites even provide options for viewing captions on many online programs.

The only explanation, obviously, is that Netflix is simply making excuses for not providing captioning on instant view features for their paying customers.

Netflix’s response to my feedback on this topic (2009 January 02), was,

“that is being worked on, and it is something we hope to include in future versions of our instant watching feature. In the meantime, you will find that the films included in our instant watching service our also available on our DVD’s, which do include closed captioning”

Where’s the advantage of that? We’re still paying the full price for our subscription (which supposedly includes online viewing), and yet being able to watch streaming videos, is denied us, simply because Netflix doesn’t value my deaf wife as a customer as much as they value “normal” customers!

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6 comments on “Closed Captions and Subtitles on Netflix Instant View!

  1. I am a long time user of Netflix. Started when it was only a year old. As to closed captions, it really is time for Netflix to get this onto Watch Instantly. Google is about to make some major leaps is the industry and will become a leader of all of this. It is totally absurd for Netflix to claim tech problems. CC on streaming has been available for a long time. The real problem I suspect is that Netflix management simply does not know how to let go of some of its original goals. The world is changing and eventually broadband will be widespread across the planet. This means that watch instantly will become the norm and snail mail disks will fade into the background. This is what Netflix is having difficulty with: changing its priorities and service. Either evolve or go the way of the dinosaurs.

    At that time I first joined Netflix it was a fairly good system. Disks were clean and viewable. But the system is in deterioration and nearly a 3rd of what I get in the mail is really badly damaged to the point of making most of them not viewable. Of course you can return them and Netflix will send another disk. This really does not work well if you are watching a TV series and also the exchange disk is often no better than the first disk.

    I have no idea how this will all turn out. But the first company to provide instant watch at a reasonable cost with closed captioning will get my business.

  2. Wow! I just noticed that on the YouTube video (see above) the captions can now be translated into various languages! This is wonderful… Nevyn is probably right, we’ll all soon be getting rid of Netflix, for full-service on-line movie rentals.

  3. The world needs to finally realize how much the deaf community has been discriminated. From the insurance world right on down to Netflix and Amazon on demand, as well as other such providers. Insurance companies cover glasses for those who lack sight, but does not cover for hearing aides for those who lack hearing. The on Demand world caters to the hearing world and ignores those who lack hearing just because there is no law forcing them to provide better service. DISCRIMINATION IS DISCRIMINATION no matter how you look at it, nor what issue you speak of. It is the sickest trait anyone company can have or any one person has as part of their character. Should I really expect anything different from MONEY whore businesses who care less about to whom they discriminate??

  4. time for a class action lawsuit. it is easily done, simply have 2 videos, one with captions and one without.. hulu does it, youtube does it, netflix can do it, they just dont want to.. we need a nice big public lawsuit, then they will.

  5. i can’t live without closeed captions i’ve been deaf since 1yr old. i want and demand CC instant movies & shows now!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! hurry up netflix,and get on with it, what’s taking so long!!!!!!!!!!!

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