United Kingdom

CHRISTA D'SOUZA argues having the subtitles on is about how you absorb information

It’s the last tolerated prejudice. But Femail’s had enough. It’s time we called out those day-to-day moments when we’re patronised for no longer being young... 

Subtitles or not? It’s a big issue in our bubble here in Wiltshire, and the tone of it is very ageist.

Every time I meekly ask if we can have them on, there is always a giant outcry. An outcry of the ‘We must get you your hearing aids, musn’t we?’ variety.

Christa D'Souza (pictured) says subtitles could be helpful because attention spans are getting shorter and they should be almost compulsory

I take real offence at this, particularly since a lot of the outcry comes from my partner, who is 67 and is pretty deaf.

Having the subtitles on is nothing to do with whether I am deaf or not (or even what language the show is in), it’s about the way I absorb information. If I didn’t have them on for Line Of Duty, with all its endless acronyms, I’d miss half the plot.

This isn’t me being doddery. Millennials, with their dwindling capacity for concentration, are doing it too, thank you very much. It’s a thing. Several reports suggest that children’s reading and decoding skills can be improved immeasurably by using subtitles.

In an age where everyone’s attention spans, irrespective of their age, are getting shorter by the minute, and mumbling gets more and more fashionable, I’m thinking subtitles should almost be compulsory.

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