There's A Problem With 'Queer Eye's' Closed Captions And Karamo Brown Vowed To Help Fix It

"Deaf & HOH people should have the same experience as everyone else!"

UPDATE: Good news! Netflix heard fans — and Karamo Brown — with the concern over closed captioning. Here's a Twitter exchange between Netflix and the Fab 5 member:


Original Story: Each and every episode of Queer Eye shows us Karamo Brown proving he can relate to people who are different from him. That's why it doesn't come as a surprise that he's used his platform to stand up for the deaf community and those hard of hearing.

Folks have recently been voicing their concern over Netflix's closed captioning for the uplifting reality show. One user said it really isn't awesome that the streaming site was "bleeping profanity AND changing the profanity used." They added that "it fundamentally changes the experiences of the television show for anyone who is deaf and/or hard of hearing and — perhaps most importantly — they're doing so "without their consent." This, they note, is "seriously ableist."

Someone else said it seemed to them that Netflix was just making the closed captioning "more concise" by rewording things to be more brief while keeping the central idea intact. This, to them, seemed like an "odd choice" and they questioned what was wrong with the original quote as it was.

That's when another user chimed to say that this is "censorship and it's patronizing," and closed captioning, as a rule, should "read exactly as what anyone is hearing, that's it, end of story." This, they suggest, should be true for any channel or program — not just in the instance of Queer Eye.

After becoming aware of these concerns, Brown took to Twitter to voice support for those in the deaf community and those who are HOH. He vowed to use whatever power he has to get something done about it at Netflix about it.

"Reading everyone's comments breaks my heart," Brown tweeted. "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 & won't stop until something changes. Deaf & HOH people should have the same experience as everyone else!"

By promising to take action, Brown proves to be a true ally for the deaf community and those who are HOH. It might not be an issue that directly affects him, but he — like Chris Pratt did for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 — felt as if it was his job to ensure that Queer Eye would be reflected authentically for those with special needs. Brown isn't the first start to call attention to the need for better closed captioning as Nyle DiMarco, who is deaf himself, advocated for that after trying to see Black Panther in cinemas and found the experience to be less-than-ideal.

There's clearly room for improvement on this issue. Luckily, the deaf community and those who are HOH have allies with their best interests at heart.

(H/T: Twitter)

Cover image: Kathy Hutchins /


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