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Complying with the Integrated Accessibility Regulation (IAR): Captioning and Describing Web Videos

By Geof Collis
June 28, 2011
Now that the Integrated Accessibility Regulation (IAR) is Law it is time to start implementing an often overlooked aspect of Web Accessibility, Captioning and Describing Web Video.

The good folks at Inclusive Media & Design, Inc. have compiled some Tips for you to consider and also have the solution for implementation.

Ten Reasons to Caption your Web Videos:

  • Captions compensate for noisy backgrounds or where sound isn’t allowed.
  • They provide a solution for poor audio quality.
  • Quickly browse the video by reading the associated text as you drag the controller as the captions are always visible.
  • View the correct spellings of people, places, and things.
  • Catch details that normally slide by unnoticed.
  • Meet or exceed compliance with the W3C Web Accessibility Guidelines adapted by many state, provincial (AODA in Ontario) and federal governments.
  • Caption content can be accessed by search engines.
  • Provide additional support for people who are learning English as a second language.
  • Make your content fully accessible to people who have hearing loss.
  • Video on the web or media player can even look better when the captioning is on.

Ten Reasons to Describe your Web Videos:

  • Video Description helps to focus on details that may go missing, even for sighted viewers.
  • Learn names and labels that you wouldn’t get from the dialog alone.
  • Multi-task while listening to video described content.
  • Turn television into radio, and listen to your favorite shows
  • Put video described shows on your iPod, and listen while walking, jogging, or driving.
  • Provide additional language support for English as a second language users.
  • Combine video descriptions with captions for rich search engine retrieval.
  • Meet or exceed the W3C Web Accessibility guidelines, adopted by many state and federal governments.
  • Your audio sounds even better with audio description.
  • Make your content fully accessible for people who are blind or have low vision.

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