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What's new with the Web Action Team
by Jeannette E. Warnert
on May 23, 2011 at 8:13 AM
The idea of captioning videos is overwhelming. I once heard that if the text has most of the same info, then captions are not required. I'm curious to know whether there is any kind of "authority," other than Karl, behind these "guidelines." These sound like best practices, but are there consequences for not following them?
Reply by Karl Krist
on May 23, 2011 at 9:10 AM
The only authority I can provide is my participation in the UC-wide Electronic Accessibility Leadership Team (EALT).  
The idea of captioning videos may feel overwhelming. But imagine how it feels to not be able to benefit from services because of a disability. Being deaf and trying to watch a video while missing out on the audio would probably also be overwhelming.  
Not only is it our goal to make our information accessible to all, but it is also important that we do not open the University up to lawsuits by not making our content accessible.  
According to the EALT report recent submitted to the ITLC:  
"Again, our guiding principal is not creating fear and solely about mitigating risk, but to follow the spirit of Pres. Yudof’s July 2010 letter to “think systematically and creatively about how we serve the growing number of people who, with or without formally disclosing a disability, increasingly depend on a fully accessible electronic environment.”  
President Yudof spoke at the meeting Dave referenced in this blog post. He is serious about the idea of accessibility- so is the Web Action Team. We are not waiting until policy forces us to make content accessible- we are doing it NOW, because we think it is the right thing to do...overwhelming, or not.
by Jon Wilson
on May 23, 2011 at 8:35 AM
I'm not sure about consequences but these guidelines are supported by the UC Office of the President.  
The University of California recognizes Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 as a community standard within public higher education in California. "  
(from the following UCOP document:  
Sections (a) and (b) of § 1194.22 of the Section 508 Amendment to the Rehabilitation Act of 1973:  
(a) A text equivalent for every non-text element shall be provided (e.g., via "alt", "longdesc", or in element content).  
(b) Equivalent alternatives for any multimedia presentation shall be synchronized with the presentation. "  
Read more about section 508:
by Alberto Hauffen
on May 23, 2011 at 1:49 PM
I don't read Jeannette questioning the need to serve people with disabilities. But I believe her concern is a valid one.  
"Overwhelming or not" takes a real meaning when you consider that those extra steps in video captioning adds to our already multi-tasking current duties. Like Jeannette's, mine include system-wide news gathering, news writing, video shooting and editing, etc. etc. etc... (She also manages online content!, which I don't).  
Check websites that offer captioned video and you'll likely see that there was one person (often more) doing each of those tasks, not one doing it all. I just was told that captioning the videos that we produce will take "a couple of minutes." I hope so.  
So, Jeannette, if it helps, you're not alone. I'm also trying to figure out how to add taht new task to my plate.
Reply by Dave Krause
on May 23, 2011 at 2:51 PM
Good captioning will take more than a couple of minutes as most of the automated options do not produce reliable text. In fact, they often produce wrong or offensive results. You can give YouTube's captions a try. I think you'll find the results woefully inadequate for a university production.  
Regarding the extra steps it takes, no one will argue that producing accessible videos isn't time-consuming. However, the necessity of including captions and transcripts has been mentioned at every accessibility seminar I've attended in the past four years.
by Brenda Dawson
on May 24, 2011 at 2:08 PM
Before I enter the video-comment fray, just want to say: Yay for semantics!  
And as for that video stuff: Does this count as transcript and captioning? This was just a transcript, and YouTube added the timing (YouTube also inexplicably insisted on deleting two words...)  
If not, can any of you point to an example of a UC (preferably ANR) video that has both transcript and synchronous captioning? Other than the words spoken, I'm not sure what information should be included in video captions.  
Also, how are the transcripts/captioning displayed/accessed if the video is streaming from ANR?
Reply by Karl Krist
on May 24, 2011 at 2:17 PM
Yes, the YouTube functionality has been given as an example of synchronous captioning. As far as having examples, or "What is ANR doing?" I am not sure...
by Diamond Radiance
on December 20, 2011 at 11:16 PM
Im glad to see that people are actually writing about this issue in such a smart way, showing us all different sides to it.
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