Cinema

UK cinemas consult on closed caption technology

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The UK’s Cinema Exhibitors’ Association (CEA), representing around 90 per cent of cinema operators, is undertaking research into technologies that assist people who are Deaf or hearing impaired enjoy movies.

Through a survey and invitation to attend an event demonstrating access technologies, the CEA hopes to garner consumer feedback on available technologies which display closed captions in the cinemas. The attendees will watch the Disney animation Wreck-It Ralph screened with a range of closed caption devices. They will then share their insights on the devices in a focus group.


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Audio description at the Adelaide Fringe

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The parade of the Adelaide Fringe will be audio described, bringing access to the opening night festivities for people who are blind or vision impaired for the first time. The parade will see King William Street transformed into the world’s largest dance floor with DJ Trip and thousands of street performers getting the city’s biggest party started.

Audio description (AD), which conveys the visual elements of the event, will be broadcast live on Radio Adelaide 101.5. The AD is being provided by Access2Arts, a newly established Adelaide-based company which specialises in audio description of live events.

Gaelle Mellis from Access2Arts said, "It is hugely exciting that the Adelaide Fringe is audio describing its iconic Fringe Parade. This opens up a highly visual event to many people who are often denied these experiences, and is demonstrating that arts and cultural events can be more accessible.”  


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Accessible cinema questionnaire results

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From June to December 2012, Media Access Australia ran a questionnaire for the general public on technology issues surrounding the use of closed captions and audio description in cinemas. The answers have now been collated and shared with members of the Accessible Cinema Advisory Group, as well as post-production houses creating captioned and audio described movies.

The questionnaire was designed to pinpoint technical issues that affect the quality of the access feature delivered that could possibly be fixed during the post-production phase of a movie. It was hoped that answers could also point towards issues around specific cinemas which could be addressed.

There were just 51 complete responses to the questionnaire. 41 were around captions and the remaining 10 for audio description. Due to the small number of responses, the results cannot adequately identify the post-production issues that may be present.


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