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Re: Captions/Transcripts


From: Jared Smith
Date: Apr 25, 2016 4:03PM

John Foliot wrote:
> Hi Julie,
> Not to contradict my colleague Jon Avila, if you are mandated to be WCAG
> 2.0 AA compliant, then you need captions, transcripts, and (audio)
> descriptions:

Not to contradict my friend John Foliot, but transcripts are not
strictly required at Level AA.

1.2.1 deals with audio-only (e.g., an MP3 file) or video-only (video
with no audio component). We'll assume you're talking about multimedia
(audio and video together), so this wouldn't apply here.

For multimedia, 1.2.2 (Level A) requires captions. If the multimedia
has visual-only content, then it must have either a descriptive
transcript OR audio description to meet 1.2.3 (Level A). However, if
the multimedia has visual-only content, then it *must* have audio
description to meet 1.2.5 (Level AA).

So if your multimedia does not have visual-only content, then only
captions are necessary for both A and AA. If it does have visual-only
information, you must provide audio descriptions at AA. A descriptive
transcript is then not required until AAA.

Of course this does not optimally meet the needs of users. We
recommend (see http://webaim.org/blog/wcag-next/) that a better
approach is to swap the audio description and descriptive transcript
requirements - treat descriptive transcripts as AA and audio
descriptions as AAA.

Much of the confusion regarding these requirements comes from WCAG's
unintelligible terms. For example, they call descriptive transcripts
"an alternative for time-based media" - a term made only more
confusing if you read its definition -