Closed Captioning Timeline

Closed Captioning Timeline by Impact Media

Certified FCC and ADA compliant Captioning Services You Can Trust

Impact Media for Team Success

A Timeline of Closed Captioning in The United States

March 16, 1980: The first closed captioned television series were broadcast for those who had bought caption decoders were The ABC Sunday Night Movie, The Wonderful World of Disney, and Masterpiece Theater.

1982: Real-time captioning debuted.

1990: Television Decoder Circuitry Act of 1990 was passed, requiring all television receivers with screens of 13" or larger be able to receive and display captions by 1993. Also the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 enacted, requiring all federally funded public service announcements to be closed captioned.

1992: FCC adopted technical standards for closed captioning on cable systems.

1993: Requirements from Television Decoder Circuitry Act of 1990 took effect.

1996: Telecommunications Act of 1996 adds Section 713 to the Communications Act, requiring the FCC to prescribe rules, and implementation schedules for closed captioning of television video programs.

1997: The FCC adopted rules that gradually increase the amount of programming requiring closed captioning.

1998: FCC's closed captioning rules went into effect.

2000: The FCC adopts an order, requiring an increasing amount of digital television programming to be captioned, and establishes a phase-in schedule for closed captioning of digital programming.

2006: 100% of all new video programming, with exceptions, had be closed captioned on both digital and analog televisions (new analog programming is programming first aired on/after January 1, 1998; new digital programming is programming first aired on/after July 1, 2002)

2008: 75% of all pre-rule video programming (pre-rule analog programming is programming first aired before January 1, 1998; pre-rule digital programming is programming first aired before July 1, 2002) had to be captioned.

2010: 100% of all new analog and digital Spanish language programs, with exceptions, had to be closed captioned.

2012: 75% of all pre-rule Spanish-language video programming had to be captioned.

2015: Best Practices of Closed Captioning went into effect in March, which included rules for accuracy, synchronicity, completeness, and placement of captions.

2016: Video clips were required to be closed captioned if any portion of the clip appeared on television, or via IP closed captioned at any time.

January 1, 2017: all montage clips must be closed captioned from any prerecorded programming captioned on television or via IP. This applies to any portion of television programs, such as best of or highlights could be considered a montage.

July 1, 2017: "near-live" programming (less than 24 hours after recording must be closed captioned within 8 hours of initial airing. In addition any live programing closed captioned for television must be closed captioned within 12 hours of the broadcast if delivered via IP.

Please note that these new captioning rules require that they meet the new best practices of closed captioning guidelines, and must adhere to accuracy, synchronicity, completeness, and caption placement rules put into place by the FCC in March of 2015.

Check Out Our Services

Impact Media has what you're looking for

To learn more about our services click on our drop down service menu in. There is special information about various services that will help you understand more about what we can do for you.


Closed Captioning Fun Facts

fun facts

Our fun facts about closed captioning features tidbits about the integration of closed captioning into our world today. We also feature our fun facts on our social media pages. Be sure to connect with us social so you don't miss out on the fun

A Variety of Services
Impact Media Broadcast Captioning

Broadcast Captioning

We specialize in captioning TV programming, and have the capability to caption any broadcast video file. Our services also include file conversions to the television station's specifications, and uploaded to the stations ftp, or if needed we will master your TV show to tape. We serve many ministries, universities television stations, producers, and media companies; we look forward to serving you too.

Impact Media Web Captioning

Closed Captioning for the Web

Let all of your videos be heard with adding closed captioning to all your web videos including YouTube. Did you know that if your video airs on broadcast television, and is also available for viewing on the internet then according the FCC rules for closed captioning, your video must be closed captioned on the web too. Rules and regulations aside, there are other reasons for captioning web videos, and they fall into the category off accessibility.

Words with Sound Effects

Subtitles and SDH Subtitles

We provide subtitles for movies and videos, whether they are for Blu-ray, DVD, Internet, or displays. SDH - Subtitles for Deaf & Hard of Hearing with closed captioning format to include sound effects. This option affords the flexibility of subtitles with the advantage of closed captioning, and gives more options for the viewer to change the font size, color, and display features that are often not available with closed captions.