Cinema & arts

Petition launched for more audio description on iTunes

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Accessible media advocate Phillip Chalker has launched a Change.org petition calling on iTunes to provide more movies with audio description for people who are blind or vision impaired.

Young girl using earphones connected to a tablet device

Digital media and technology: 

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Accessible cinema technologies introduced on the Gold Coast

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The Arts Centre Gold Coast has introduced a new line of personal captioning and audio description devices intended to enhance cinema access for moviegoers in the region.

Mayor Tom Tate and Kerry Campbell using captioning glasses to watch a movie.

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The most popular accessibility stories of 2015

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As the year comes to a close, here’s a look back at some of the most popular articles and events regarding consumer accessibility across the web, digital technology, education, TV, video, cinema, arts, policy and research in 2015.


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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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Accessible live events conference

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Making live events accessible is a growing area. Whilst captioning of live events such as theatre, sports and television programs has been available for many decades, live audio description is a much more recent service, especially outside of arts performances.

Audience seated in a theatre


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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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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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Blind activist launches petition for accessible inflight entertainment

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Philip Chalker has launched a petition on Change.org, asking that Virgin Australia provide audio description for people who are blind or vision impaired on its inflight entertainment systems.

Little boy wearing headphones inflight


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