Where in the World are my Closed Captions?
Have you noticed the recent buzz about closed-captioning? Just last week, the FCC introduced quality rules for closed captions (CC) on television: TV broadcasters and other video programming distributors now must ensure that captions meet the following quality standards:
- Accuracy: Captions must be grammatically correct and provide essential non-verbal information.
- Synchronicity: Captions must coincide as closely as possible with the audio.
- Completeness: The entire program should be captioned.
- Placement: Captions should be viewable, legible and not block important on-screen information.
While a great step forward for TV, the Internet still lags behind. In a recent Time article, Steve Friess a hearing impaired journalist wrote a complaint against the Internet's inaccessibility for the deaf and hard of hearing. As Steve watched the live-stream unveiling of the new Apple Watch, he realized there were no captions and was frustrated because Apple is often admired for creating devices that break down barriers for people with disabilities. By not providing CC, millions of people with hearing loss could not watch the event in real-time. Next month, HHF is meeting with Apple executives to discuss ways they can offer support for people with hearing loss and promote prevention. If you have a message you would like us to share directly with Apple, please email us.
Similarly, The New York Times thinks requesting CC for NYT.com's videos is "an extremely reasonable request" and plans to roll out CC in the coming months. To read about one person's recent challenge with CC at the movies, check out a blog post
written by HHF Board Chair, Shari Eberts.
Other Articles In This Issue of HHF March E-News