A question about the use of <br> in subtitles


Hi, I’ve been translating on the viki for a few years now, but recently I had a question about the use of the in sentences, what is the rule? That I use the < br > in a sentence with more than 3 lines?

I see translators using it in one or two lines, I even got into a discussion (friendly discussion), about how and where to use it.


These are the only official guidelines for adding breaks in subtitles.


Well If they are short phrases like Yes, No , Maybe, Ok, etc. like you get when 2 people are talking over each other on a talk show, then 3 lines MAX. You don’t want the subtitle box covering too much of the screen. and if there are too many different speakers, the segmenter should have cut the sound bites smaller so that each person has their own segment or, if short sentences then only 2 people in the same segment.


I usually avoid three lines. But…

  1. …there are some (Chinese) subtitles which physically don’t fit into just two lines.
  2. …if on top of a long, two-line worth sub comes a translator explanation, I put the latter into the 3rd line.

Those are the only two times I would use three lines in a sub.