Digital TV

UK Labour MP supports VOD access campaign

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Labour MP Lillian Greenwood has submitted a private member’s bill to the House of Commons in support of Subtitle It!, a campaign to improve the accessibility of video-on-demand (VOD) services.

Lillian Greenwood holding a sign which reads 'Subtitle It! Whatever we watch, however we watch it #SubtitleIt'


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UK regulator releases access requirements for 2016

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The UK communications regulator Ofcom has released its list of TV channels which will be required to provide access services – captioning, audio description and signing – in 2015.

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Digital TV regulation submissions released

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The Federal Government has released the submissions it has received in response to its review of digital television regulations, with a number of them focusing on accessibility issues.

Silhouette of a man with glasses watching TV. Image credit: XiXiDu via Flickr

Media Access Australia’s submission to the review makes four key recommendations:


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Report on the state of captioning in Europe released

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The European Federation of Hard of Hearing People (EFHOH) has released a report which looks at the levels of captioning on television, video-on-demand (VOD) services and cinema in EU countries.

European Federation of Hard of Hearing People (EFHOH) logo


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Report shows British TV channels are exceeding access requirements

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The UK communications regulator Ofcom has released its Television Access Services report for 2014, which shows that all 72 domestic channels have met or exceeded their access requirements, and many have done considerably more than required.

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Ofcom requires broadcasters to submit bi-annual reports giving the percentage of programs which have captions (called ‘subtitles’ in the UK), signing and audio description.


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Media Access Australia launches report on the accessibility of video-on-demand services

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Media Access Australia's latest report on the state of play for accessibility on video-on-demand (VOD) services recommends that captioning be introduced on all catch-up TV services by the end of 2015, and all VOD services by the end of 2016.

Access on demand: captioning and audio description on video on demand services cover

Media Access Australia has today launched Access on Demand, a comprehensive report on the accessibility of VOD services in Australia and other countries.


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Netflix introduces audio description

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Daredevil, a TV series about a blind superhero, has become the first program on Netflix to have audio description for people who are blind or vision impaired.

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ABC launches trial of audio description on iview

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The ABC has today launched a trial of audio description on its online catch-up TV service iview. The trial will last 15 months, during which 14 hours of audio described programs will be added to iview each week.

Audio Description logo and ABC iview logo

The audio description is initially available on iPads and iPhones only, and people will need to download the latest version of the iview app to receive it. The trial will be extended to desktop PCs in mid-May, Android devices in June, and to HbbTV enabled TVs (which are connected to the internet) in July.

Digital media and technology: 

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Caption reporting retained as communications amendment bill passes House of Reps

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A bill to amend sections of the Broadcasting Services Act, including some sections relating to captioning, was passed in the House of Representatives last night. However, amendments to the original bill mean that broadcasters will have to continue reporting on captioning compliance, while a scheduled review of the captioning rules will go ahead.

Young girl watching TV. Image credit: Mr Jan, Flickr


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Red Bee publishes results of caption survey

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The captioning provider Red Bee Media Australia has published the results of a survey it conducted about the positioning of captions on the Seven Network program My Kitchen Rules.

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