Thai Timed Text Style Guide
- 35 characters per line.
- Do not translate proper names (e.g., Peter, Suzanne), unless Netflix provides approved translations.
- If there are no official translations, please transliterate the English character names.
- Nicknames should only be translated if they convey a specific meaning.
- Do not use ellipsis when a sentence is split between two continuous subtitles.
- Use an ellipsis to indicate a pause or an abrupt interruption. In the case of a pause, if the sentence continues in the next subtitle, do not use an ellipsis at the beginning of the second subtitle.
Subtitle 1 ถ้าฉันรู้...
Subtitle 2 ฉันคงไม่โทรไปหาเธอหรอก
- Do not use ellipsis to indicate mid-sentence pick-ups. e.g. when resuming subtitling plot-pertinent background speech, like news on TV, after giving precedence to dialogue:
- Use a hyphen followed by a space to indicate two speakers in one subtitle, with a maximum of one speaker per line
- Font style: Arial as a generic placeholder for proportional SansSerif
- Font size: relative to video resolution and ability to fit 35 characters across the screen
- Font color: White
- Forced narrative titles should only be included if plot-pertinent.
- Forced narratives that are redundant (e.g., identical to onscreen text or covered in the dialogue) must be deleted.
- Forced narratives should be enclosed in parentheses (), except for foreign dialogue.
- Never combine Forced Narratives with dialogue subtitles.
- If at all possible, try to avoid interrupting a line of dialogue with a forced narrative.
- When a forced narrative interrupts dialogue, use an ellipsis at the end of the sentence that precedes it and at the beginning of the one that follows it.
- Foreign dialogue should only be translated if the viewer was meant to understand it (i.e., if it was subtitled in the original version).
- When using foreign words, always verify spelling, accents, and punctuation, if applicable.
- Foreign words or phrases should be translated when possible (i.e. hello, goodbye, thank you, merci) or transliterated when no accurate translation exists.
- Do not use italics.
- Maximum two lines.
- From 1 to 10, numbers should be written out.
- Above 10, numbers should be written numerically: 11, 12, 13, etc.
- When a number begins a sentence, it should always be spelled out.
- Note that the above rules may be broken if line length and/or reading speed are a factor.
- There are no periods - sentences should be separated with a single space.
- Never use question marks - exclamation marks can be used.
- Double quotation marks (“ ”) without spaces
- Single quotation marks for quotes within quotes:
- Quotes should be used at the start and end of a sentence and not at the start of every subtitle.
- Adult programs: 17 characters per second
- Children’s programs: 13 characters per second
- Words or phrases that are repeated more than once should be translated with Thai repetition marks - ไปไกลๆ
- A space should be added after the Thai repetition mark, but not before:
- Only subtitle plot-pertinent songs if the rights have been granted.
- Do not Italicize lyrics.
- Use ellipses when a song continues in the background but is no longer subtitled to give precedence to dialogue.
- Punctuation: punctuation should not be used in songs.
- Main titles: do not subtitle the on-screen main title card.
- Episode titles: do not subtitle episode titles if they do not appear on-screen. If on-screen, either as part of the principal photography or burned into the video, please obtain approved translations from Netflix.
- Titles of published works, existing movies and TV shows: use official or well-known translations. If none are available, transliterate the original title.
- All plot-pertinent dialogue should be subtitled and takes precedence over background dialogue.
- Dialogue (including expletives) should be rendered as faithfully as possible, without using dialect or words that would otherwise introduce a level of obscenity not implied in the content.
- Deliberate misspellings and mispronunciations should not be reproduced in the translation unless plot-pertinent.
- Both formal and informal language styles are acceptable, depending on the content. Please make sure to always be mindful of creative intent and language usage of the source material.
- Include as much of the original content as possible.
- Do not simplify or water down the original dialogue.
- Reading speed can be increased to:
- Adult Programs: 20 Characters per second
- Children's Programs: 17 Characters per second
- Truncating the original dialogue should be limited to instances where reading speed and synchronicity to the audio are an issue.
- All same-language audible songs should be titled if the rights have been granted.
- Song lyrics should be enclosed with a music note (♪) at the beginning and the end of each subtitle.
- Use brackets [ ] to enclose speaker IDs or sound effects.
- Only use speaker IDs or sound effects when they cannot be visually identified.
- Use a generic ID to indicate and describe ambient music (e.g., rock music playing on a stereo).
- Sound effects should be plot-pertinent.
Revised section 3 Continuity - 3rd bullet point revised, example added
Revised section 13 Reading Speed – words per minute removed
Revised section 14 Repetitions– 2nd bullet point added
Revised section 16 Titles – 1st bullet point revised
Revised section 17 Special Instructions – 4th bullet point added
Revised section 18 SDH Guidelines - rewritten for clarity
Revised section 19 Reference - rewritten for clarity