Belfast Telegraph

Chris Pratt apologises for offending hearing impaired fans

The star wants app bosses to add closed captioning to all video posts.

Actor Chris Pratt has learned sign language to properly apologise to hearing-disabled fans after making an "incredibly insensitive" request for his Instagram followers not to rely on video subtitles.

The Guardians of the Galaxy star is known for posting footage of himself online, often giving fans a look behind the scenes of films and press events, but in one recent upload, he asked Instagram users to turn up the sound for the clip instead of using closed captioning.

The request was met with some criticism online, amid claims Pratt overlooked those who are hard of hearing.

The actor, who has developed a reputation as one of the nicest guys in Hollywood, took note of the feedback, and promptly filmed an apology, using sign language.

In the accompanying caption, Chris insisted he meant no harm by his volume request, but he is deeply sorry for anyone he may have upset.

"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...," he explained in the lengthy note.

"HOWEVER, I realize now doing so was incredibly insensitive to the many folks out there who depend on subtitles," Chris continued. "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."

The actor also had a message for anyone who may be doubting the sincerity of his apology, as he continues to promote his new blockbuster, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.

"Now... I know some of you are going to say, 'Hey! Chris only apologized because his publicist made him!'," he added. "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."

Pratt concluded his extended caption by calling on Instagram officials to automatically incorporate closed captioning into video posts on the app.

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