One of the biggest advantages to hearing-impaired people are closed captioning services. With this service on their television, they are able to see text of what is being said on news programs, television shows and many movies. This can be a great benefit in allowing them to get information and entertainment from their television sets in the same way people who do not have hearing issues are able to.
In the past, captioning services or subtitling services were only available on a very limited number of programs. To obtain closed captioning a person had to purchase a stand-alone box, which would be hooked up to their television set. Eventually it was determined it would be more economical to provide the hardware to receive broadcast captioning in television sets. Today most analog and digital televisions must provide this hardware in their devices. This can make it much easier for a person with hearing issues to be able to obtain the service.
Since the late 1990s it has been required for most broadcast and cable stations to provide closed captioning services for the programs they air. While this has been a great advantage, there have been some programs that are difficult for a hard-of-hearing person to understand all of the information being conveyed on the programs they are watching.
Many times the quality of the video captioning being displayed on the television is of poor quality. It might skip words, misspell others and sometimes randomly stops displaying information. This could make it difficult for a person to be able to follow the program without having questions about the information that was missed.
In addition, the pictures on the television do not always match the words being spoken. Sometimes one character or speaker will be shown on the television screen while the words of another person are displayed on the screen. This can become very confusing and for some people not worth the effort to try to figure out what’s really going on.
Because of these issues and problems, new rules have been set up that will eliminate these problems. Now it is required for services to provide higher-quality captioning of programs and make sure the words are synchronized to match what is taking place on the screen. This should make watching television much more enjoyable for anyone with hearing issues.