I am astounded to discover, as a new customer, that your movies on demand do not come with subtitles. How am I supposed to watch them, then, as someone with hearing problems. This is shockingly bad in this day and age. I'd switch to sky but I'm not allowed a dish on my flat. I cannot express how disappointed I am in this. All I can find on your website is a document that was last updated in 2010 saying you were 'looking at it'
Our TV On Demand service allows you to access thousands of TV shows, including those on BBC iPlayer, ITV Net Player, 40D and Demand Five, plus over 500 movies and thousands of music videos.
Since we launched our TV On Demand service, we’ve been aware that the lack of access services has been a source of frustration to the many customers who rely on subtitles or audio description. The problem is that, while on demand programmes look and feel like ordinary TV shows, the technology behind them is very different. This means that providing access services is very complicated – not just for us, but for on demand services from all providers.
That’s why we’re delighted to announce that the first version of our new TiVo product can deliver subtitles on BBC iPlayer.
Here’s how to find them:
1. Go to ‘BBC iPlayer’, and choose a programme to watch’
2. Now press the Left arrow button to go to the S option (which means subtitles are available) and press ‘OK’
3. Subtitles appear at the bottom of the screen
********************************** I work for Virgin Media - but all opinions posted here are my own
Why were we lead to to believe - in a posting in 2010 I think - that you were going to put subtitles on your
on demand services in the near future??? What on eart ii the point on getting subtitles through your
bbc iplayer - I prefer to watch it on mhy computor. BBC Iplayer, sky and ITV player all manage it. I would
like the deaf community to make a noise about your failure. Also - why when on the "on demand"
screen do your awful adverts for other programs/have to so LOUD. KIt is really irritating. I like so many other
deaf people ironically find sounds that are too loud v. pailful - so always have to remember to turn the sound
down before I go to the "on demand" option.
You seem stuck in the attitude now that you can do nothing about it. The popultion is aging, most people grow a bit deaf as they get older - and I would like people to know how you have failed the deaf community before they sign up to you.
I find it very annoying as well and it's the main reason I don't really watch on demand as I can't follow programs just by listening to them as I'm profoundly deaf. Even some of the TV channels don't have subtitles so I can't always follow them. The only way I can is by using headphones but then it means no one else can hear it.
Thank you all for your concerns regarding the ondemand service and the lack of subtitling. I can understand your frustrations both personally and professionally.
As a service provider we have to rely heavily on content supplied to us by 3rd party companies such as the likes of Sky, BBC, Channel 4 and S4C. As your no doubt aware, BBC, Channel 4 and S4C can rely heavily on subtitling or audio description services.
Some movies provided to us to load into our ondemand service can come with subtitles, whether they hardcoded (1 file which has the subtitles already included) into the movie or they can come supplied as 2 separate files which we would load onto our servers. (The process is a little more complex but I wanted to give you a feel of what can happen). It is possible that the file containing the subtitles can be missed off accidentally and this can be corrected quite easily.
The main thing is that most of the ondemand content does not have this information provided to us. We get given the files and this is then loaded onto our servers. This is not a fault with the video ondemand service as the content provider is not giving us the information to begin with.
We are working closely with these companies to try and improve upon this.
I am sorry that I am unable to offer any assurances or alternatives but the purpose to this post is that we are here listening to what you guys are saying. We are always looking at ways at which we can improve our services that we offer.
I went to Canada for a three week break and stayed with a friend in Canmore. He has a digital cable TV provided by Shaw Direct. I was astounded to see all of the on demand films were subtitled. They have the technology in place. What is even more impressive is I put a DVD on, switched on the subtitles (for the DVD itself), I found duplicate subtitles appearing - one from Shaw and another from the DVD itself. I simply switched off the DVD subtitles and found the Shaw subtitles to be very accurate. Now that is impressive. I do not understand why Virgin Media continues to struggle to provide a similar setup for the Tivo customers.