Closed Captioning Quality Issues in Canadian Digital Television


In 2013, I wrote a major research paper part of my graduation requirements in the BA, Radio and Television Arts program at the RTA School of Media at Ryerson University.

If you would like to read the paper, feel free to get in touch.


This Major Research Paper examines the quality of closed captioning on Canadian digital television. Closed captioning, a text transcription of all dialog, music, and sound effects in a television program, is typically used by deaf and hard of hearing television viewers as a substitute for audio. The research in this paper highlights the issues that this demographic (as well as hearing individuals and those who use closed captioning by association) are experiencing and their root causes. The issues were determined through a Canada-wide survey that gave study participants the opportunity to detail their experiences. Information gathered included geographical area, service provider, and equipment type to determine the root causes of these issues. Additionally, a literature review provides background on the history of closed captioning and media accessibility not only in Canada, but also around the world. With the information gathered, this Major Research Paper seeks to provide suggestions on how to change the Canadian broadcast industry to be more inclusive and accessible to those who are deaf or hard of hearing.