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Old August 21st, 2010, 02:57 PM   #1
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Closed Captioniing for broadcast

Need to know how to provide closed captioning for a documentary for broadcast. Anyone have some guidance on this? Would appreciate some help. I edit using Sony Vegas Pro 9. Thanks!
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Old August 21st, 2010, 03:24 PM   #2
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What do you mean by "provide"? Apparently, the new version of Sony Vegas (9.0x) lets you embed CC into a video stream, but I believe it only supports it inside the MXF container.
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Old August 21st, 2010, 04:01 PM   #3
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In a conversation with PBS they require closed captioning on any submitted content. Hope that explains it. Would appreciate any guidance -- thanks!
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Old August 21st, 2010, 04:23 PM   #4
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Alright,

Basics are these:

1. Submit audio track to a captioning service. They will make a transcript of the program material, then create a text file of the dialog.

2. The captioning service will then create a "caption file" that contains both the text, and the "timings" of when those captions should appear on the screen. These files come in a multitude of formats.

3. Previously Sony Vegas was not able to read any of these files directly, and you had to type it all in yourself. Apparently this has been changed somewhat, but I haven't updated mine to test it.

4. Normally, in the NLE, you select an option to embed the captions into the video file, and you open the caption file the captioning service has sent you. The file comes in, and you can then see all the captions on the screen.

5. You then export the file using certain parameters that don't show the captions on the screen, but rather it embeds them into signal in the video.

6. You deliver to the broadcaster who will test the file to ensure all parameters are correct. For PBS this is the "Red Book" which can be downloaded from the PBS web page free of charge. It's an excellent guide for ANYONE looking to prepare materials for broadcast.

7. Once the files have been submitted and approved for broadcast, you do whatever else is listed in your contract. Hopefully, that includes getting paid! :)

Preparing CC materials for broadcast is not a drag and drop affair. Especially with something like Vegas which was never intended for this kind of professional work. It lacks a number of features you will need to prepare for a PBS submission, but I suspect you'll find that out once they give you your delivery specifications.

In terms of a captioning service, I use AST (Automated Sync Technologies) and I find their work to be HIGHLY professional, and quite fast. They are also very inexpensive as far as this market goes. I've done about a dozen projects with them. You can call them and speak to a real person which is refreshing. I have no affiliation with the company other than being a very satisfied client.

Hope that helps!
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Old August 21st, 2010, 04:33 PM   #5
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Thank you so much! This is exactly the information I was looking for. As an added note -- I have Premier Pro but have used Vegas so much in the past, I'm more comfortable with editing with it. I don't know if Premier Pro would be better. Anyway, thanks again!!!
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