Flash Your Captions to The World

Though we are stuck in one location with one official language in one country, it doesn't mean the videos that we post on the Internet are limited to one's geographical location. It's time to go global since the Internet doesn't have limitations on audience, language, cultures, etc. Producers should aim to go global by adding different languages in the captioning/subtitling when they post their videos on the Web. This way they are getting exposure to billions of people in a very inexpensive way.  However, this may be an obstacle when the know-how or technological skills are in the way.

When you post your video, opt to choose Flash video if possible since Flash is cross-platform so it can play both in Mac or Windows OS. It can also play in Android OS. This means Flash is not operating system specific and will guarantee a broader audience. Though Apple iOS is still not allowing Flash to work on their system, Android smartphones are still the reigning champions in the market share (50% Android OS vs 25% Apple OS, as per Nielsen Mobile Insights, March 2011). Therefore, your video is accessible through all desktop web applications as well as the majority of smartphone web applications.

Another advantage is that Flash video player is currently the only one that can display captions/subtitles in different languages. The other video players (Windows Media or Quicktime) cannot have a CC menu that can display options to choose your preferred CC language. Of course, you would need XML files for the captions/subtitles of each language. Some player, such as Ooyala, can incorporate all languages into 1 XML file.  Then the Flash video player skin need to be customized through some settings and coding in the Flash editing software to incorporate up to 100 different languages. Imagine that! Out of 6809 different languages in the world (as per Ethnologue organization), only 17 languages are spoken by 3.653 billion of people (that's more than 60% of the world's population). They are in order of number of speakers: Chinese, English, Spanish, Hindi/Urdu, Arabic, Bengali, Portuguese, Russian, Japanese, German, Punjabi, Javanese, French, Vietnamese, Korean, Turkish, and Italian.

Knowing the above exposure and what it can bring to your videos, it is a no brainer as to why you need to immediately start planning where to post your videos and how you can capture the market share easily. It's just a few clicks and settings away in Flash Video Editing Software. Don't lose the momentum and this opportunity!

Note about the author: Arif Kusuma is a Chief Technical Officer at Aberdeen Captioning. He has  Bachelor's degree in Chemical Engineering and Computer Information Systems, as well as a Master of Business Administration. He has a passionate drive for technology, both hardware and software, and like many people, loves to be the first to get the latest cutting-edge gadgets.