Whenever Chris Pratt has a movie to promote, there’s a 98% chance Chris will open his mouth and say something dumb several times, and his press tour will turn into an apology tour. Chris is promoting Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, and he’s already said some things that have required him to slip into PR-sanctioned apology mode. His latest apology was delivered in ASL because he pissed off the hearing impaired.
According to People magazine, Chris got into trouble after he posted an Instagram video with subtitles and instructed viewers to ignore the subtitles and turn the volume up. (Instagram’s default setting is to play the videos on mute until you decide you want to hear it). That didn’t sit well with people who need those subtitles to understand what’s going on. Earlier today, Chris posted another video apologizing in sign language and an explanation why.
Instagram does this thing where it mutes all the videos it shows and forces you to turn on the volume in order to hear them. (maybe because most people are watching those videos at work when they should be working and don't want to get caught. I know that's when I do it. 😬) So when I made a video recently with subtitles, and requested that people turn up the volume and not just "read the subtitles" it was so people wouldn't scroll past the video on mute, thus watching and digesting the information in the video. HOWEVER, I realize now doing so was incredibly insensitive to the many folks out there who depend on subtitles. More than 38 million Americans live with some sort of hearing disability. So I want to apologize. I have people in my life who are hearing-impaired, and the last thing in the world I would want to do is offend them or anybody who suffers from hearing loss or any other disability. So truly from the bottom of my heart I apologize. Thanks for pointing this out to me. In the future I'll try to be a little less ignorant about it. Now… I know some of you are going to say, "Hey! Chris only apologized because his publicist made him!" Well. That is not the case. As always I control my social media. Nobody else. And I am doing this because I'm actually really sorry. Apologies are powerful. I don't dole them out Willy-Nilly. This is one of those moments where I screwed up and here's me begging your pardon. I hope you accept my apology. And on that note. Why doesn't Instagram have some kind of technology to automatically add subtitles to its videos? Or at least the option. I did a little exploring and it seems lacking in that area. Shouldn't there be an option for closed captioning or something? I've made them lord knows how much money with my videos and pictures. Essentially sharing myself for free. I know they profit. So… GET ON IT INSTAGRAM!!! Put closed captioning on your app. #CCinstaNow
Chris didn’t sign the entire apology and that’s a cop out. If Chris was really sorry, he would have signed his entire apology. It would have taken forever and he’d screw up a lot, but I feel like that’s something people who know sign language would appreciate. The screw ups, not the effort. I can imagine it’s probably pretty funny to watch a person who isn’t fluent in ASL sign: “I really sandwich cactus my mistake.”