Vimeo enhances accessibility

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Thursday, 9 January 2014 10:41am

The video sharing website Vimeo has introduced several new features, including support for closed captions and foreign language subtitles on its video player.

Until now, YouTube was the only social video sharing service which allowed videos to be made accessible to Deaf and hearing impaired viewers. As reported by the Drum, with this added function, Vimeo will be more competitive and viewers will have access to a larger amount of content.

As well as allowing people to share videos, Vimeo launched an On Demand service last year which enables video creators to sell their work directly to the public. If video producers have the Vimeo player embedded on their website, this can now also now be used as a point of sale.

While Vimeo’s main competitor, YouTube, introduced support for closed captions in 2006, the level of captioning on online videos remains frustratingly low in most countries, including Australia. Media Access Australia highlighted the issue in a report released last year, Captioning on Video on Demand: It’s Time for Australia to Catch Up.   

In another long awaited move, Vimeo has improved the overall accessibility of its website. Now, those who use screen readers can access the control bar and play/pause videos. Like YouTube, there is still no support for audio description (a second audio track describing the visual elements for viewers who are blind or vision impaired).

For more information, see this article on the Drum website.

How to caption a YouTube video

Providing closed captions for a video on YouTube is easy. Simply follow our step-by-step guide.

You can also follow our instructions on how to caption a Vimeo video.

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