The captioned NFL streaming event will be free to the user and features 2 audio channels with both soundtracks captioned. The first is a regular commentary and the additional track is a Yahoo “enhanced” commentary with more information about the game. Both soundtracks and the captions will be in English.
According to Yahoo’s Director of Accessible Media, Larry Goldberg, this is part of Yahoo’s move to look at live sports broadcasting and delivering captioned content internationally through Video on Demand (VOD) streaming services. Online broadcast rights are growing in popularity and are attracting interest from global providers such as Yahoo.
Yahoo has invested in a major accessibility lab in Boston USA and Goldberg is the head of this new facility which builds on an earlier accessibility lab founded in Yahoo’s California headquarters in 2006. This lab will be providing and managing the captioning service for the game.
Goldberg has many years’ experience in dealing with accessibility from his work at the National Center for Accessible Media where he pioneered accessibility techniques and services for media. Whilst provision of captioning on live television is routine throughout the world, streaming video is trickier due to the range of formats and devices that people can use to access the live footage.
It is expected that the game will be watched by a global audience measured in the millions, although for Australian audiences in the Eastern states the 12.30am start time (Eastern Summer Time on 26 October) will be challenging, except for diehard NFL fans.
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