The other night, my hubby and I snuggled down to have some quiet time in front of the TV when it occurred to us that the closed captioning feature was activated on one of the channels. As we fiddled with the remote, I began to wonder: How do all the shows and movies get these captions? Better yet, is this a potential job opportunity that would allow me to work from home? A little research, and to my surprise, the answer was YES!
Not only can you work from home watching classic TV shows, movies, and YouTube videos, many of these closed captioning positions also pay well. Talk about a win-win.
Where can you find these fantastic closed captioning jobs that allow you to work from home? No worries, we’ve done the research and the work for you.
Below, we’ve found some of the best companies hiring right now for closed captioning jobs that allow you to work at home.
Working at Home as a Captioner: What You Can Expect
Before we dive into where you can find captioning jobs that allow you to work at home, we thought it might be helpful to get a quick overview of what closed captioning entails and what you could be working on in this position.
You might already know that closed captioning are those descriptions that appear at the bottom of a TV screen during a show or movie. These captions help deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals understand the content of the program.
As a captioner, you’ll watch shows or videos (how fun is that?!) and type what you hear.
You should be comfortable working on a computer and typing accurately and quickly as well. Some captioners can type around 225 WPM (words per minute)! Aside from these qualifications, you will need a reliable internet connection and headphones. Check the equipment requirements before applying to ensure you have what you’ll need to succeed as a captioner with the company.
There are also two types of captioning positions you should be aware of as you start your closed captioning work at home adventure:
- Offline captioning
- Live captioning
Offline captioners are what many of the companies below want. These transcribers caption pre-recorded TV shows, movies, or educational videos.
If the program isn’t “live” on the air, it’s noted as offline captioning. This position offers the most flexibility, allowing you to set your schedule since the shows are pre-recorded.
Real-time captioners, as you may have already guessed, provide captioning to live broadcasts. Think meetings, newscasts, events, court reporters, etc. These positions require that you type at an extremely fast speed and generally require professional certification or schooling.
Some companies provide training or a “practice run” before hiring.
Most companies hire remotely for these positions, making these captioning jobs the perfect work-at-home opportunity.
Ready to earn some cash watching TV? Sounds crazy, I know, but believe me, it’s all true!
Check out these companies hiring captioners below.
Aberdeen hires remote real-time live broadcast captioners. For this position, you’ll need a typing speed of 180-220 WPM, have two computers, three phone lines, and closed captioning software. Before getting hired, you’ll need to pass a real-time captioning test with 98% accuracy.
CaptioningStar is a captioning company that hires real-time freelance captioners. There’s not much information on their website about the positions, so you’ll need to contact them for further details.
This company hires in-person and remote transcribers, real-time captioners, and offline captioners. To apply as a captioner with Captionmax, you will need some experience (typically 1-2 years). Read through the requirements to see if it’s a good fit for you, and then press that “apply now” button.
4. Caption Media Group
Caption Media Group hires US-based closed captioners with two years of experience. They don’t have a career page on their website, but you can check sites like LinkedIn and Indeed for openings.
CrowdSurf hires freelancers from around the globe to transcribe audio clips into text documents. To start on CrowdSurf, you’ll need to create an account and pass a brief assessment. Once that’s complete, you’ll begin working on transcription tasks. As you prove yourself on the platform, you’ll be able to work on higher-paying tasks like captioning. In this freelance role, you can work anytime, and you’ll receive payment per task. This is an excellent place for beginners to try out captioning and transcription jobs.
6. Daily Transcription
If you’re a transcriber, captioner, or subtitler, check out Daily Transcription. To apply as a captioner or subtitler, you must live in the US or Canada and have prior experience. In these roles, you’ll work as a freelancer, and payments are made weekly by check.
This is one of the more popular closed captioning sites. Their application is straightforward, and you can apply to multiple positions under the “captioning” umbrella. Positions on Rev include transcriptionists, captioners, subtitlers, and translators.
Each of these positions has its own application process, so apply to one or all. Rev hires beginners who can pass a grammar test and provide a satisfactory closed captioning sample. Payments go out weekly via PayPal.
Aside from the great captioner positions available, this company looks like a fun place to work. They embrace the idea of mixing business with pleasure, and the overall company culture seems warm and inviting.
Be sure to check out this opportunity and investigate their other positions posted. Along with their current freelancer and internal positions, TransPerfect has a general freelancer application, so you can register with the company for current and upcoming jobs.
9. Vanan Captioning
Vanan Captioning hires freelancers for translation, closed captioning, open captioning, offline captioning, video captioning, and more. According to their website, they provide captioning services for platforms like Netflix, YouTube, Amazon, and Facebook. There isn’t much information about these roles on their website, so check out Indeed and Glassdoor for reviews.
VITAC hires in-person and remote (location-based) captioners for real-time captioning and offline closed captioning jobs. There are different requirements for the various roles, and the full-time positions offer benefits to employees. To find the remote positions of their site, look for the keyword remote in the job listing.
Looking for More Closed Captioning Jobs? Try These!
As a work-at-home mom, I’ve dipped onto job boards here and there to investigate companies that might be hiring. If you’re seeking closed captioning work, online job boards and are another great place to look!
Several companies seek closed captioners and often post only to job boards. Type in “closed captioning” or “transcriber” in the search section, and voila! A list of possibilities. Check out these awesome boards for closed captioning jobs at home, and let us know what you find.
Another way of finding captioning work is by posting a job yourself. Check out marketplace sites and post your pay rate and position. Here are two possible places to start:
Finding closed captioning jobs that allow you to work at home (remember you could work more than one!) can be a rewarding and stable source of income. If you love to type, like watching movies and videos (um, who doesn’t?), and enjoy flexible scheduling, then closed captioning jobs are the way to go.
Did you check out any of these positions? Score a job? Have questions about these jobs? Let us know below!
Originally published February 4, 2019. Content updated December 2021.
Rev is currently in a lawsuit for unlawful business practices, such as how they paid me $10 for 6 hours of work. Do any of these actually pay what the work is worth?
Holly Reisem Hanna
The problem with transcription is it pays per audio minute or hour, not per minute or hour worked. It states this on its career page — but people often assume it’s per minute worked. Transcription/captioning is a skill that takes a lot of time to master. It will be interesting to see how it plays out because this is how the majority of transcription companies pay their workers.
So back to your question. I would look at hourly pay rate jobs instead of transcription, captioning, or translation. Customer service, virtual assistant, bookkeeping, and social media management generally pay by the hour worked.
Sounds ideal for my needs and skills. I like the idea of trying to get work by advertising my services, but I’m new at this. Can you give me an idea of what the current price range might be per hourly rate, and what we can expect to be paid by the different companies? Also, how and when do they issue payment? Is it immediate, once a week, or month? Thanks!
Posted on 7/22/19
Holly - The Work at Home Woman
Each company will have their own policies on when they pay, what method they use, and how much. Some companies list the pay rate and info on their websites, and others do not.
I know with Rev, you work as an independent contractor, you’re paid weekly via PayPal, and you’ll earn $0.45-$0.75 per audio/video minute. The other two sites don’t have the info readily available.
You can also check Glassdoor.com — they often have pay rates for companies.
I currently work for a captioning company in an office for the deaf and hard of hearing community who use special phones. Everything is done in real time using the captioner’s voice which captions into text on the clients screen located on their phone. I really love this line of work but would love to work from home. My concern is that I have read reviews for some of these companies such as REV and VITAC. Sadly, these reviews were extremely discouraging. The office I currently work in is the best. The management teams are uplifting and encouraging. They really WANT you to succeed! The atmosphere is always positive. I’m very enthused about working from home but I am afraid of letting go of what I have now in exchange for a dream job of working from home that turns out to be a huge let down. Does anyone currently work at home as a captioner who is having a very positive experience you can share with us? Thank you in advance for your feedback!
Holly - The Work at Home Woman
That’s great that you work in such a positive environment! I’ve not tried Rev or VITAC so I wouldn’t be able to say for sure.
Have you check out https://aira.io/our-agents — they help the blind and visually impaired via video calls. I know it’s not closed captioning, but it may be something to check out.
Good luck and keep me posted!
Thank you so much, Holly! I’m going to check out the link you sent me. I ended up applying at REV in spite of the reviews 5 days ago. I have not yet heard anything back. Praying for something to pop up soon that I could both enjoy and excel at!
I used to do the exact same thing you are doing. A small company in Dallas. We captioned using Dragon and we had a client which provided the phones for the hard of hearing and we captioned phone calls in real time. That client, after almost 5 years, terminated our contract early because they were supposedly doing AI to replace us. Who knows if that was true or just a plot to get rid of us. I was a top captioner for them and did really well. When they dumped us, I was heartbroken because I loved my job so much. I heard about VITAC from a friend, applied and got a call back. I was excited to be in that line of work again only to find out they give you no PTO and a full-time shift for them is considered 12 hours and an 8 hour shift is part-time. Of course this is a sneak move so they don’t have to give you any insurance. plus, you sit idle until work becomes available and you do not get paid during that time. I was shocked. I turned down the job which I got after I passed their tedious and long assessment. In my captioning job before, I worked M-F and had my regular 8hrs and any overtime I wanted because phone calls are never ending. there’s always someone on the phone so we never sat idle. I am determined to find another company that has phone captioners but it seems they hide well or don’t pay well. CaptionCall pays peanuts. Do you mind sharing what company you work for? At my previous company, we had the opportunity to work from home when the pandemic started but because I wasn’t hard-wired to the internet, being at home did not work out for me and I just drove to the office anyway. The building remained open so there were a few of us who still came in. I’d also like to work from home if possible, but I am happy to see someone out there who captioned phone calls like me. If this comment reaches you, please reach out to me by e-mail: [email protected]
FYI: Flexjob link: “Not Found
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Thank you for the article.
Holly - The Work at Home Woman
I just clicked on it and it worked for me. Maybe their site was temporarily down?
Try this link: https://www.flexjobs.com/search?search=closed%20captioners&location=&sub=1033 (affiliate link)
Great info. I had forgotten about this income source. Years ago I worked as a transcriptionist for a telephone relay service for the hard of hearing so perhaps that skill set would be helpful. Will definitely look into it.
Holly - The Work at Home Woman
Good luck, Loretta!
Keep me posted!
Awesome Loretta! Have you gotten the chance to look into it further? Good luck with your work at home journey. Sounds like you already have some experience in this field!