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Re: Captions, Transcriptions, and Translations

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From: Cousins, Earl
Date: May 22, 2015 1:04PM


Hi John,

No problem with too much information ; )

I have some English videos with English captions that also have text transcripts in French and Spanish.

I also have a bilingual English / Spanish video that currently only has English subtitles.

My understanding is that the former should be compliant, and the latter needs proper bilingual captions and possibly transcripts as well.


Thanks much!


Earl Cousins | Accessibility Technical Analyst
Scotiabank | Enabling Solutions & Support Management (ESSM)
Information Technology & Solutions
44 King St. West, 9th floor, Suite 902, Toronto, Ontario, Canada  M5H 1H1

<EMAIL REMOVED>
416-866-6460
Scotiabank is a business name used by The Bank of Nova Scotia



-----Original Message-----
From: John Foliot [mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> ]
Sent: Thursday, May 21, 2015 2:02 PM
To: WebAIM Discussion List
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] Captions, Transcriptions, and Translations

Cousins, Earl wrote:
>
> Hi All
>
> This has come up a couple of times where there's confusion about when
> we need captions and transcripts, and there is further confusion when
> the videos need to support multiple languages. I've looked around and
> can only find unilingual information.

Hi Earl,
This is going to be a some-what lengthy response, but the TL;DR is that you need Captions, Video Descriptions, and Transcripts to be WCAG AA compliant.
WCAG does not directly address multi-lingual requirements, *but* the requirements do apply to all content, regardless of language of resource. In your context it will take some intelligent thought towards applying WCAG requirements to the content you have.


Taxonomy:

* Captions: Text version of the audio stream, including all dialog and appropriate sound effects (e.g. [clapping]) interspersed. Time synchronized to the media asset.
*Primary* audience (not exclusive) is deaf users. (Note, in this context and in the following, it is acknowledged that these additions can benefit many if not all users in some fashion, but with regard to disability accommodation, I am indicating the primary accommodation mode.)

* Sub-Titles: Text translation of "foreign" or secondary language presented as audio. Normally will not include the important sound effects information ([music]). Time synchronized to the media asset.
*Primary* audience (not exclusive) is users who do not speak a/the second language.

* Video Description: Audio file (and now perhaps a text file voiced by TTS
engines) that provides information about what is happening on screen (e.g.
Narrator: "David crosses the room and closes the door"). Time synchronized to the media asset.
*Primary* audience (not exclusive) is blind users.

* Transcripts: Text version of both dialog, sound effects, and scene movement/description. Think of it as a "screen play". While time-synched Transcripts are now emerging (to take advantage of some cool interactive things we can do with HTML technologies), traditionally Transcripts are not time-synched, nor are they required to be.
*Primary* audience (not exclusive) is deaf/blind users.

>
> I've recently come across some English videos with English captions
> and available French and Spanish transcriptions and am wondering if
> these are sufficient or if we would need a separate video with each
> language in both audio and captions. The speech is voiceover with
> nothing being demonstrated in a time-sensitive manner.

Seeking a bit of clarity here with regard to what you have, and what you *need*. (See taxonomies above.)

Assumptions:
* you want to be WCAG AA compliant
* you want accessible video content for internal employees

While ensuring a video is fully accessible involves multiple considerations (for example, there is a long set of requirements for how different PwD will interact with your media player - see also:
http://www.w3.org/TR/media-accessibility-reqs/), from a content production perspective, you need (IMO) the following (yes, all 3):

* Captions
* Descriptions
* Transcripts

Which maps to the following user-groups:

* Deaf
* Blind
* Deaf/Blind


WCAG Success Criteria involved:

1.2.1 Audio-only and Video-only (Prerecorded):
For prerecorded audio-only and prerecorded video-only media, the following are true, except when the audio or video is a media alternative for text and is clearly labeled as such: (Level A)
Prerecorded Video-only: Either an alternative for time-based media or an audio track is provided that presents equivalent information for prerecorded video-only content.

"The intent of this Success Criterion is to make information conveyed by prerecorded audio-only and prerecorded video-only content available to all users... An example of pre-recorded video with no audio information or user interaction is a silent movie. The purpose of the transcript is to provide an equivalent to what is presented visually."
http://www.w3.org/TR/UNDERSTANDING-WCAG20/media-equiv-av-only-alt.html

(JF: Points to the term 'Transcript' in quoted text above)


1.2.2 Captions (Prerecorded):
Captions are provided for all prerecorded audio content in synchronized media, except when the media is a media alternative for text and is clearly labeled as such. (Level A)
"The intent of this Success Criterion is to enable people who are deaf or hard of hearing to watch synchronized media presentations. Captions provide the part of the content available via the audio track. Captions not only include dialogue, but identify who is speaking and include non-speech information conveyed through sound, including meaningful sound effects."
http://www.w3.org/TR/UNDERSTANDING-WCAG20/media-equiv-captions.html



1.2.3 Audio Description or Media Alternative (Prerecorded):
An alternative for time-based media or audio description of the prerecorded video content is provided for synchronized media, except when the media is a media alternative for text and is clearly labeled as such. (Level A)
"The intent of this Success Criterion is to provide people who are blind or visually impaired access to the visual information in a synchronized media presentation. This Success Criterion describes two approaches, either of which can be used.

One approach is to provide audio description of the video content... During existing pauses in dialogue, audio description provides information about actions, characters, scene changes, and on-screen text that are important and are not described or spoken in the main sound track."

(JF: Notes that while text-based Video Descriptions are not mentioned in WCAG, the technology has emerged to allow for TTS rendered descriptions which are not produced as audio content, but still meets the SC requirement. This will require a determination on your part on how pedantic you wish to be on the interpretation of the existing SC which specifically uses the term "Audio Description" as opposed to the [IMHO] more accurate "Video Description")

"The second approach involves providing all of the information in the synchronized media (both visual and auditory) in text form.[*] An alternative for time-based media provides a running description of all that is going on in the synchronized media content. The alternative for time-based media reads something like a screenplay or book"
http://www.w3.org/TR/UNDERSTANDING-WCAG20/media-equiv-audio-desc.html

(JF: * My read and interpretation of this is that a time-synched Transcript would meet the Success Criteria - although the ability to consume ONLY the transcript should exist for those users where both vision and hearing are impacted, and thus the requirement to actually have the video playing is almost secondary, as those users cannot consume the video content at all.)


1.2.5 Audio Description (Prerecorded):
Audio description is provided for all prerecorded video content in synchronized media. (Level AA)
"The intent of this Success Criterion is to provide people who are blind or visually impaired access to the visual information in a synchronized media presentation. The audio description augments the audio portion of the presentation with the information needed when the video portion is not available. During existing pauses in dialogue, audio description provides information about actions, characters, scene changes, and on-screen text that are important and are not described or spoken in the main sound track."
http://www.w3.org/TR/UNDERSTANDING-WCAG20/media-equiv-audio-desc-only.html

(JF: see my comments above regarding defining "descriptions")


Regarding multi-language support, I suspect that you will need to determine
*why* you have French and Spanish translations. If they serve to actually provide full multi-language support across the three languages, then you will need Captions, Descriptions and Transcripts in all three languages, programmatically bound to the video(s) produced. If the 'sub-titles' serve to only provide clarity to users who cannot understand the second language (i.e.
a multi-language audio track, where English is the primary language, but occasionally M. Francois speaks in French and 'sub-titles' is being provided in English for English-only users) then a modification of your English Captions and Transcripts will need to reflect that fact. For example, the caption file would render:

M. Francois [in French] - "Welcome to the WebAIM Mailing List"
Mr. Smith - "Thank you Monsieur Francois"

(Captions should always be in the native language of the video)


Hope this helps, happy to try and provide additional clarity if you have more questions.

JF
​
--
John Foliot
Principal Accessibility Consultant
Deque Systems Inc.
<EMAIL REMOVED>

Advancing the mission of digital accessibility and inclusion

On Thu, May 21, 2015 at 6:58 AM, Cousins, Earl < <EMAIL REMOVED> >
wrote:

> Hi All
>
> This has come up a couple of times where there's confusion about when
> we need captions and transcripts, and there is further confusion when
> the videos need to support multiple languages. I've looked around and
> can only find unilingual information.
>
> I've recently come across some English videos with English captions
> and available French and Spanish transcriptions and am wondering if
> these are sufficient or if we would need a separate video with each
> language in both audio and captions. The speech is voiceover with
> nothing being demonstrated in a time-sensitive manner.
>
> The audience is internal employees, if that is a factor.
>
> Thanks!
>
> Earl Cousins | Accessibility Technical Analyst
> > Scotiabank | Enabling Solutions & Support Management (ESSM)
> Information Technology & Solutions
> 44 King St. West, 9th floor, Suite 902, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M5H
> 1H1
>
> <EMAIL REMOVED> <mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> >
> www.scotiabank.com<;http://www.scotiabank.com/>;
> Scotiabank is a business name used by The Bank of Nova Scotia
>
>
>
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--
John Foliot
Principal Accessibility Consultant
Deque Systems Inc.
<EMAIL REMOVED>

Advancing the mission of digital accessibility and inclusion