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Thursday 15 November 2018

Queer Eye’s Karamo Brown urges Netflix to address subtitles complaints

Deaf viewers have complained about the quality of subtitles on the streaming service.

Queer Eye hosts Jonathan Van Ness, Bobby Berk, Antoni Porowski and Karamo Brown (Charles Sykes/Invision/AP)
Queer Eye hosts Jonathan Van Ness, Bobby Berk, Antoni Porowski and Karamo Brown (Charles Sykes/Invision/AP)

By Keiran Southern, Press Association Los Angeles Correspondent

Queer Eye host Karamo Brown has urged Netflix to address complaints from deaf viewers who say its subtitles censor and simplify dialogue on various shows.

Deaf fan Rogan Shannon sparked a debate after tweeting the streaming giant demanding to know why its subtitles were not a word-for-word representation of what was being said.

He accused Netflix of being “insulting” for altering speech when it is not in “perfect” English.

Brown, 37, acts as the culture expert on makeover show Queer Eye and said reading comments from fans breaks his heart.

He wrote: “Reading everyone’s comments breaks my heart. I don’t know how much power I have but know, the next time I’m at Netflix I’m going to bring up this issue internally & wont stop until something changes.

“Deaf & HOH (hard of hearing) people should have the same experience as everyone else!”

As well as the claims that Netflix censors text for clarity and brevity, other Twitter users claimed the service fails to caption foreign language inserts.

Responding on Twitter, Netflix said it was looking into the issue.

It said: “We’ve heard about the caption issues on the service, specifically for @QueerEye.

“After looking into it, there’s lots of dialogue missing from the Fab 5 that shouldn’t be. We’re fixing it.

“In some cases, we do bleep incidental profanity from our unscripted series.”

Subtitles can be created in a variety of ways.

They include being written manually or generated using audio recognition software.

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