Captions make it easy for viewers to digest the content of your videos. They’re a critical part of accessibility, but they are also helpful for longer form and educational content in any language. Wistia captions are also interactive, which means they’re searchable and viewers can jump right to a certain point in the video by clicking on a section of subtitles.
Whether you’re trying to make sure people can get the message of your video (even without the sound), looking to expand your viewer base with multilingual captions, or just searching for a little more love in the video SEO department, Wistia Captions can help.
Let’s jump in to creating and using your captions!
If you spot an error in the automated captions we produce for you, or just need to update your SRT file, you can do that easily by selecting the Edit option in thearea of the Customize panel.
SRT stands for “SubRip Text,” which is a basic subtitle format. If you’d prefer not to order your captions through us, SRT files can be created and edited using most text editors.
The correct formatting for an SRT file is comprised of four parts:
The number for each subtitle (begins with 1).
The beginning and ending time for each subtitle, formatted as
hours:minutes:seconds,milliseconds, and separated by
-->. There should be one space between the starting time and the
-->, and one space between the
-->and the ending time.
The subtitle text. This can be on one or more lines.
A blank line before the start of the next subtitle.
Want an example? Sure thing!
1 00:00:00,500 --> 00:00:03,840 You can add captions in any language to your Wistia videos. 2 00:00:03,840 --> 00:00:06,337 French, Spanish, Japanese, Arabic. 3 00:00:06,337 --> 00:00:08,420 When your viewers click the closed captions button 4 00:00:08,420 --> 00:00:10,711 on the player, they can choose their preferred language 5 00:00:10,711 --> 00:00:11,800 from a drop-down menu. 6 00:00:11,800 --> 00:00:15,180 Croatian, Czech, Hungarian. 7 00:00:15,180 --> 00:00:17,520 Now your video's message is accessible to anyone 8 00:00:17,520 --> 00:00:19,004 from anywhere. 9 00:00:19,004 --> 00:00:19,820 Anywhere. 10 00:00:19,820 --> 00:00:22,270 Persian, Latin.
SRT files need to follow the above formatting exactly, otherwise the upload to Wistia will fail. If this happens, we’ll provide you with an error message pointing to the problem area, like this:
This message will point you right to the line that needs fixing so you can edit it as needed. Save your edits and try uploading again.
Familiar with using command line applications via your computer’s terminal? If so, you can use the handy tool Subcheck to scan whole SRT files for errors. It can even make automatic adjustments to the file. This tool is a favorite of the Wistia Customer Champs 😃
Speaking of the Champs, if you’re having trouble working out the exact issue with an SRT file, you can always reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance!