It’s certainly no secret that Spanish language media in the United States is growing at an exceedingly fast pace. All you have to do is turn on the television or look on the internet to see the large number of shows and videos that are produced in Spanish. “So what does this have to do with closed captioning?” you may be thinking. Good question. Well, just as the FCC has rules and regulations for English closed captioning, it also has captioning requirements for Spanish. Let’s take a look at what’s going on in the world of captioning.
From the beginning to present day
This story actually began in 2010 when the FCC required that all Spanish language content on broadcast television must be captioned (a rule that is still in place today). In 2012, the FCC asked for another requirement: that 75% of all pre-existing Spanish content on TV be captioned. And now since 2014, the captioning requirements for English, Spanish and bilingual English/Spanish captioning is actually identical.
“What about languages other than English and Spanish?” you ask. Another good question. Closed captioning rules for other languages are actually exempt from the FCC’s requirements all together. The FCC also says that non-English and non-Spanish videos which contain small amounts of audio in English or Spanish do not need to be captioned.
Now here’s where it gets a little tricky – that is, discussing the topic of IP-delivered Spanish and bilingual English/Spanish programming. If you aren’t familiar with the term, “IP-delivered” refers to videos that are posted on the internet. The 21st Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act (CVAA) explains all of the rules for IP-delivered programming that had at one time been on TV with captions. Basically, the rules state that all new English, Spanish and bilingual English/Spanish programs must be captioned.
As of March 30, 2015, the deadline to caption these IP- delivered programs will be within 30 days of going online. On March 30, 2016, that 30 day deadline will be decreased to 15 days. Again, exemptions relate to programs that are in languages other than English, Spanish or bilingual English/Spanish. Exemptions may also be possible for self-implementing and economically burdensome reasons. If a programmer finds the captioning project too economically burdensome, they can petition the FCC. Programmers with self-implementing reasons must meet requirements set forth in the one of the FCC’s 13 Criteria.
Let us help you with your project
Confused yet? Don’t be! If you have a captioning project, we will take care of everything for you here at Metro Audio & Video. Our team of expert realtime and offline captioners have trained for years and are world-class experts in closed captioning. They are completely up-to-date on the latest FCC requirements, and are the most reliable and accurate in the industry. If you want to work with the leading captioning company in the United States, the choice is clear: Metro Captions.