Captiview Reviews

In the interest of informed debate we present you these differing points of view on the Captiview Cinema Captioning system. You can bet your bottom dollar that we at The Rebuttal will will give you the good and the bad so that YOU can make up your mind. Unlike some people we know ;-D

Open Captions and Closed Captions. What is the big deal?

To put it simply, open captions (“OC”) is the words that appears on the screen. Closed captions (“CC”) means there are no words on the screen. You have to use a handset device called CaptiView to watch a movie. Click here   CaptiView looks like.

In my perspective, going to the movies in a CC session is not a nice way to enjoy the movie. You have to ensure that you are sitting in an appropriate seat, ideally at the back seat, so the handset device aligns with the screen. You can’t really snuggle up to someone else or be a blob or be comfortable in your seat while watching a movie. Instead, you have to sit upright and focus on what you are doing in order to use CaptiView effectively. Not only that, but as you can see from the googled picture, the CaptiView device looks inferior. Compared to this day and age where we all have iPhones, iPads and all sorts of fancy technology, this device literally looks like a bad 80s technology. What’s the point of going to see a movie in the cinema if you are not going to enjoy it.

I have always maintained that I am all for new technologies and maximising accessibility for all deaf people to watch a movie. In theory, CC is good in sense that it allows you to watch any movie at any time, whereas, OC is only limited to three sessions a week. My big problem with this is that the cinemas have (and are) completely phased OC sessions out without ensuring the technology used for CC sessions is suitable. There has been no notification by cinemas and no input by the deaf patrons in using CaptiView. Apparently Deaf organisations have been notified of this, and for bizarre reason, they approved it without any obtaining any input from the deaf patrons. To put it simply, OC sessions has been automatically phased out and we are expected to comply with what cinemas are offering us – the inferior CaptiView.

Surely, the cinemas have a responsibility to make sure that the transition from OC to CC is smooth and that it doesn’t disadvantages the deaf patrons. Surely, it would be far much more sensible to trial CC sessions as to generate feedback from deaf patrons, to sort out teething issues and create improvements to the technology, while keeping OC sessions which is only held three times a week. Sadly, this is just a common example of what a company can do to meet the bare minimum requirements to comply with in regards to accessing services for disabled people.

For a much more comprehensive view on this issue, you might find this article good reading:

I would very much appreciate if you could show your support by liking this group as a protest:

Thanks for making time to read this.


My Captiview Experience *only speaking for myself!*

So I saw Harry Potter with captiview yesterday. Bearing in mind I had benefit of watching it with experienced Captiview users, I found it not bad at all, if shown how to get best out of it. Sit in back rows, stretch neck so its tall enough for you to read the box below d screen you can follow the movie easily enough without looking up and down. Font and sentences are small enough so you can read it in one glance.

If this means more cinemas, more timely n frequent screentimes I’d be happy with it. Might be better value-add than long and protracted struggle to get OC up on the screens.

Having said the above – it needs more work. Particularly on user-friendliness and OHS issues. Cinemas should reserve back rows for captiview users otherwise it may open itself for lawsuits on negligent ergonomics.  Kids n seniors will struggle. May not be as efficient for dialogue-intense films. You need enough units to cater for mass audiences for high density locations like city cinemas. Events Cinemas will accept feedback on this but whether they will act on them I dont know. Just my wee 2 cents worth and may I also reitierate – I’m only speaking for myself


3 thoughts on “Captiview Reviews

  1. Its so ironic, they fork out a lot of money for inferior product where it is a lot cheaper to just get a iPad or similar template, and download free subtitle reader from Apps store (good old apple) and I watch any movie as long as there are subtitles on the net to download for free.( I am sure my server pays a small fee to these apps somehow as nothing is really free in this today’s world).

    They could save a bundle of $$ and get the iPad or similar technology, I am sure we would be happy to give our licence or ID details when we get the ipad or similar as security (not gonna be responsible for breakages thank you very much) and put on the seat (need some velcro design or pocket type design for seating – Reading Cinemas have very very tall seat backs and the slope is amazingly steep which is perfect for the placement of the iPad or similar which I have been doing for a year. I just prop it anywhere I want, and position it, then cuddle up to my loved one. iPad is a large screen and subtitles format is a comfortable off-white large text- rather than hideous green flickering at tiny tiny text..

    It boggles my mind how this technology can even be endorsed. The people endorsing it should have their minds reassessed. They’re so out of touch with the deaf community- it is embarrassing.

    My 5 cents !

  2. Tried this for the first time last night! A lot better than Rear View. Yes, I agree, it needs work and improvement. I do hope OC does not disappear, as this is not as good. I am curious why you think we’d need the back rows reserved. I sat in the front. With Rear View I HAD to sit in the back or the words got weaker & smaller. This unit worked anywhere. It was most private and I walked & leaned to test the “neighbor factor”, and it seemed private enough. I would love to see an iPad or iPhone version, but I notice that one of those, when turned on in a theater is far from private. In such a case, THEN we would need the back rows. is this perhaps what you meant?

    I was able to slouch, shift, sit up, all with a slight tweak of the unit. It’s the best thing so far, short of Open Captions. It IS better than the yellow open captions, but black-border yields the best opportunity to stay fixed on the screen.

    My opinion! 🙂

    • Thanks Keith … Hopefully one of those that suggested that the back was better can explain more. I hipe more people wwith a positive view of Captiview will write in so debate can be varied and informed.

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