Text-to-speech, epilepsy triggers and masking filters are just a few ways TikTok is optimising its platform for accessibility. With the development of their new auto-captioning feature, let’s dive into TikTok’s current plans to make their platform more accessible, and how other social media platforms line up.
What are they doing?
TikTok is launching a new feature on its service, allowing creators to add auto-generated captions, making their platform more accessible. The platform is offering this in two languages initially, American English and Japanese.
TikTok said “Auto captions automatically generate subtitles, allowing viewers to read or listen to content. As creators make content, they can select auto captions in the editing page after they’ve uploaded or recorded a video so that text is automatically transcribed and displayed on their videos.”
What does this mean?
Simple- inclusivity for all, but that’s not the only driving factor. Not only will this new feature allow for more accessibility as a whole, but it also adds more presentation features to the app and allows users to watch silently.
How do other platforms line up?
Instagram already has auto-caption features for IGTV, and is developing these features on reels and stories. TikTok creators have been known to use Instagram Threads to caption their TikTok’s previously. Facebook has created a dedicated page for accessibility. It also boasts automatic alt text, providing descriptions for those with visual and hearing impairments.
What do we think?
In the age of social change, it’s both exciting and overdue that platforms are making progress for these communities. Previously, TikTok has been questioned for its lack of accessibility, so creating these features is a win-win for everyone. Continuing forward, social platforms should create more awareness around these features. In developing new ways to lay out their platforms, they can make them more user-friendly- we can’t wait to see what comes next.