US access committee reports on Internet video captioning

Monday, 18 July 2011 09:45am

The the Video Programming Accessibility Advisory Committee has released a report to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), which proposes a timetable for the compulsory closed captioning of all Internet video content originally broadcast with captions on American television.

The committee’s report was one of the requirements of the 21st Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act, which was signed into law by President Obama last October. Now that the FCC has the report, it has six months to set new closed captioning rules.

Once the rules are in place, the committee has proposed the following schedule for the mandatory captioning of TV programming distributed on the Internet.

  • Within 6 months, all prerecorded programming which has not been edited
  • Within 12 months, all live and near live programming
  • Within 18 months, all prerecorded programming which has been substantially edited

The report also discusses some of the technical issues and requirements relating to closed captioning on the Internet, and recent developments in the area.

For more information, see the Broadcast Law Blog.

In Australia, the ABC’s iView is currently the only Internet ‘catch-up’ TV service which provides closed captions.

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