Feature update; Twitter launches automated captions for voice tweets

By Arya M Nair, Official Reporter
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Twitter Captions
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Twitter, the microblogging platform, has planned to launch captions for voice tweets on its main platform as well as in Twitter Spaces, its Clubhouse-like social audio rooms.

In June 2020, it launched voice tweets, which were criticized because they lacked captions, causing accessibility concerns.

Voice tweets are currently available only for iOS users since the technology has not yet made its way to Android. These captions will be automatically created in one of eleven languages, English, Japanese, Spanish, Portuguese, Turkish, Arabic, Hindi, French, Indonesian, Korean, and Italian.

Users need to tap the CC icon in the top-right corner of the tweet window to see captions for voice tweets. Older tweets will not benefit from the feature because captions will only be generated for new tweets.

At the time of voice tweets launch, it was revealed that Twitter did not have a dedicated accessibility team. Back then, employees had to volunteer their own time for accessibility work. since then, the company has fixed this gap, with teams dedicated to accessibility issues formed during September last year.

Gurpreet Kaur
Gurpreet Kaur
Global Accessibility Head

“As part of our ongoing work to make Twitter accessible for everyone, we’re rolling out automated captions for Voice Tweets to iOS. Though it’s still early and we know it won’t be perfect at first, it’s one of many steps we’re taking to expand and strengthen accessibility across our service, and we look forward to continuing our journey to create a truly inclusive service.”

Later this week, it announced the end of Fleets, its year-old feature. Within a year of its introduction, the company concluded that Fleets had no future and announced that it will be closing down on August 3, 2021.

Related: Twitter is working on new features to offer better control over tweets