Why is Subtitle Localization Necessary?

June 13, 2022

Do we need to do subtitle localization? As we know, the global market for content that requires subtitles has its own problems in the area of "locality".

Because there are many differences between the cultures of one country and another. especially in its grammatical characteristics, which are the main foundation so that people can understand the interactions that occur in the content.

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The increasing number of TV programs around the world that include subtitles in their content causes translators to need to prevent missed communication. However, changing the language alone is not enough. That's why it still requires localization of subtitles.

So, what exactly is subtitle localization?

What is Subtitle Localization?

Subtitle localization is a process that adapts content so that information on the results of the subtitle can be "reached" to the local audience who is watching.

Why is Subtitle Localization Necessary?

If we 'localize' subtitles into a language, apart from getting positive feedback in the form of expanding content distribution—the internationalization of content occurs. So this localization also emphasizes the strength of cultural values for the targeted market share. Especially if the management of SEO content is classified as good so that it can penetrate the defenses of search engines around the world.

How to Localize Subtitles?

At least there are some guidelines for localizing a subtitle. starting from adjusting the length of the subtitles, processing the rhythm of speaking speed, and adjusting the subtitle text formatting of the content.

There are some conditions for adjusting the length of the subtitles. Usually, the subtitle sentences that we often see in videos consist of only one or two lines. With a note that has a character length of 35–43, located in the middle of the video or to the left of it all (must be even).

However, in fact, clients (for television programs or films) always provide requests in the form of subtitle localization consisting of 60 characters. Then, this text must also continue to appear on the screen for a duration of 6-7 seconds. This is so that the audience has time to read the text.

Every second, the subtitle must contain approximately 10-12 characters. So that each line of the subtitle only has about 60-70 characters in the text. If possible, try to keep this text template the same every time it appears or disappears from the screen.

Then, why do we need speech rate adaptation? Because, in the end, the purpose of subtitles is to make them readable according to the reading speed of humans in general.

This means that the capacity of a text should be able to contain up to 150 words per minute. In this case, it is intended so that the duration of the subtitle does not quickly disappear or appear on the screen for too long. Thus, audience satisfaction also increases.

Furthermore, there are also stages for placing subtitles. The placement of subtitles is one of the important aspects of localizing content. In general, this text will be placed at the bottom of the screen. This is done so that the level of readability is maximized. In addition, don't forget to set subtitles in VTT or SSA file formats.

That's the discussion about why subtitle localization is needed. In essence, this localization process is needed to improve the quality of content that targets the local target market. Hopefully, this article will be useful.

Also read: 5 Best Family Movies Non Animated You Should Watch
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