Deaf or hearing impaired

Choosing accessible movie sessions

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With so many big movies being released for the Christmas season, including Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Jurassic World and Arthur Christmas, it’s important for people with a hearing or vision impairment to find out the most accessible way to experience them, in a cinema session offering captions or audio description.

People watching a movie in a cinema


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Interest in mobile accessibility continues to increase: report

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The Mobile Manufacturers Forum (MMF) has released a report suggesting that there has been an increased interest in the availability of accessibility features on smartphones and tablets.

Left hand holding a smartphone with floating squares emerging from the screen

The MMF released statistics related to its Global Accessibility Reporting Initiative (GARI) on the International Day for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities on 3 December.


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Sydney Festival expands accessibility

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The innovative program of events to be staged at the upcoming Sydney Festival is set to be more accessible and inclusive than in past years. The festival runs throughout January 2016 and will feature many performances with specific accessibility components for those with vision, sensory, hearing and mobility impairments and disabilities.

Image of the sensory-friendly ‘Sunny Ray and the Magnificent Moon’ show.


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Cortana now available to Australian Windows 10 users

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Support for Cortana for Australian users has been added in the latest November update for Windows 10, allowing the feature to be officially enabled locally.

Cortana logo above the text "Hi, I'm Cortana."

Digital media and technology: 

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European Commission proposes making products and services more accessible

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The European Commission has proposed a European Accessibility Act which will set accessibility requirements for key products across the European Union (EU), making them more accessible for people with disabilities. The products include ATMs and banking services, telephones, TV equipment, transport, e-books and e-commerce.

European Union flag flying atop a flagpole


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Feedback on captioning regulation wanted

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The lead-up to the end of the year has seen a little burst of consultation around captioning issues. The Federal Department of Communications and the Arts has released a policy consultation paper on the Captioning Regulatory Framework.

Businessman holding an open pair of scissors up to a line of red tape


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Ofcom releases fourth caption quality report

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The UK communications regulator Ofcom has released its fourth and final report into the quality of live captioning on television.

Ofcom: Measuring live subtitling quality. Results from the fourth sampling exercise


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Accessible film festival hosts free gala screening in Sydney

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Access All Areas Film Festival (AAAFF) will be celebrating the International Day of People with Disability on 3 December with a free screening of Last Cab to Darwin starring Michael Caton and Jacki Weaver.

Michael Caton as Rex in Last Cab to Darwin


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Anger with American Airlines over inaccessible inflight entertainment

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Hundreds of people have taken to social media to express their disappointment with American Airlines after the airline responded to a query on the accessibility of its inflight entertainment.

Passengers seated on an airplane, with inflight entertainment systems visible

The query came from Nyle DiMarco, one of the final four contestants on the 22nd and final season of America’s Next Top Model. DiMarco is the only contestant in the show’s history who is Deaf.


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Handel’s Messiah live streamed and accessible

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Streaming live events on the internet allows people who cannot attend to experience the performance. A more recent innovation is to include accessibility services to allow people with disabilities to also enjoy the show.

Handel's Messiah at the Sydney Opera House. Image credit: Sydney Opera House

Sydney Opera House is providing a live-streamed, fully-accessible version of Handel’s Messiah on Sunday 6 December 2015 from 12.50pm AEDT.


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