A few months ago, Twitter promised to automatically add captions to any video that was uploaded. After a few months of testing, Twitter is confident they’ve got the bugs worked out and have now rolled out the auto-captions functionality to everyone who uploads a video to the social media platform.
"Starting today, all videos will be auto-captioned,” wrote Twitter support. "To see them, turn on captioning in your mobile device settings, or select the CC button on Web."
For mobile users on Android and iOS, videos will automatically play muted with captions. For web users, there will be a CC button so you can just turn on and off closed-captioning as you prefer. Transcriptions are apparently auto-generated by Microsoft, according to a note placed on each auto-captioned video.
This is obviously a great new accessibility feature for deaf people or anyone who’s just hard of hearing, but it’s also just a great new feature in general. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been scrolling through Twitter only to get blasted with a movie trailer at full volume because I forgot to mute my phone after a call. That’s the sort of butt-clenching surprise I prefer to reserve for family gatherings and medical appointments.
While this feature is great, it’s not perfect. Twitter users are already calling for additional features that’ll let users edit the captions that get applied to video uploads. So far Twitter hasn’t mentioned anything about a caption editor, but strangely, the larger a tech company gets, the slower it is to add services. Patience is a virtue and all that.
On the other hand, maybe things will move a bit faster now that Twitter has a new CEO. Jack Dorsey stepped down at the end of November putting Parag Agrawal in charge. Dorsey had been criticized for not having enough time for Twitter while also being the CEO of another company, so now that Agrawal is heading things, perhaps Twitter will have a more hands-on CEO.
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