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Re: Transcript vs. Caption


From: John Foliot
Date: Dec 18, 2014 9:12PM

Jonathan Avila wrote:
> So, if you take the stance of full audio description being a hard
> requirement and the fact that most multimedia will not have pauses for
> then from what I've read and seen discussed before SC 1.2.5 AA cannot
> be met on a technicality of the definition of audio description.

Not exactly. Professional movie studios (Pixar of particular note) are doing
just that now - but as I noted, it is a costly and tricky process, and far
from perfect (there are still the occasional collision of audio tracks). I
recall once chatting with an MTV executive about this, and he indicated to
me that it did add a non-insignificant amount to the final cost of
production. I also remember a particular conversation with a blind colleague
who noted that when he watched Shrek, the audio descriptionist voice was
chosen to "blend" into the other cartoon-like voices, for a more seamless
integration. (That sounded way-cool to me at the time!) His point however
was that while providing the script as text (for a TTS engine to render)
that it needed to be evaluated towards the total presentation: in the case
of Shrek, if it relied on the 'stock' synthesized voice (cranked to 200+
words per minute) it would have intruded into the movie experience, as
opposed to augmenting it. Just something to contemplate on...

With the ease of posting videos on the internet today however, the ability
to fulfill this requirement will be (I conjecture) difficult for all but the
largest shops.

This is why I am both concerned about the requirement for "audio"
descriptions (as providing the text 'script' is significantly easier to
accomplish) along with the fact that outside of the Chrome plugins Loretta
referenced, the actual tools to successfully deliver on the SC are sparse to
non-existent today, making achieving 1.2.5 (AA conformance) extremely
difficult. Not impossible, but without the technical support at the end-user
level, it will require that the content producer fill in the missing User
Agent/AT gaps.

> So
> you could run into a situation where you meeting SC 1.2.7 extended
> audio description and you could meet 1.2.3 with a transcript but you
> could not meet SC 1.2.5. I do see that the WCAG working group as g8
> Extended audio description as a sufficient technique for SC 1.2.5 -- so
> I hope that we can all agree that an extended audio description would
> meet SC 1.2.5 despite the definition of audio description in 1.2.5
> implying the AD should fit in to the pauses.

Well, if you use the "must fit into the pauses" as the deciding criteria, I
suppose that yes, you've found the loophole (while noting that in fact, that
seems to be the distinction in WCAG today). When we were working on the MAUR
(pronounced Mow-er) - The Media Accessibility User Requirements - we
actually envisioned the need for the end user to be able to pause or "shift"
the primary stream long enough to listen to/process both the video
description and/or extended description. See: