Closed Captions

How do I avoid problems when delivering closed captions?

To avoid common problems when delivering closed captions, read the iTunes Closed Captioning Testing Guide available in Resources and Help.

What are the requirements for closed captions?

By June 30, 2015, TV content deliveries for the U.S. iTunes Store must include closed captions. Be aware of the following special cases:

  • TV episodes that are not in English and have never been broadcast in the United States don’t need captions. However, these TV episodes will need burned-in English subtitles. Use the reason code NO_CC_SDH_FOREIGN_LANGUAGE_ENGLISH_SUBS for these episodes.
  • TV episodes that are in English are required to have closed captions. This applies whether they’ve been broadcast in the United States or not.

Only currently valid reason codes will be accepted. Without a valid reason code, content without closed captions can no longer be offered on the iTunes Store in the United States, and will be removed on or after June 30, 2015. Be sure that you update your content with valid reason codes before then.

If you’re not sure which of your deliveries has closed captions, you can get a status list in Catalog Reports.

Learn more in the iTunes Package Film Specification and the iTunes Video and Audio Asset Guide in Resources and Help.

Are subtitles or MLF supported for TV?

Currently TV only supports original version audio and Closed Captioning.

What is a scratch encode?

A scratch encode is a low-resolution copy of the video asset that was delivered to iTunes. A scratch encode is usually used by partners to sync closed captions to episodes already delivered to iTunes.

Scratch encodes are available by doing a metadata lookup in Transporter.