In Broadcast - November 2014 - 42

I N T E R N A T I O N A L

WWW.INBROADCAST.COM | ISSUE 37 - NOVEMBER 2014

N E W S

InPREVIEW

Captioning or subtitling increases the number of people who can access the content

More Platforms, Less Accessibility?
42

By Andrew Lambourne
Business Development Director,
Screen Systems

A

s the broadcast industr y
continues to morph into
the content delivery industry, it
reaches ever-more platforms at
ever-increasing resolution.
It's easy to forget the constraints
of "broadcast" in these days of
online content on demand, likewise
we now take HD for granted and
yet as recently as ten years ago
the rollout of HD was stymied by
the conundrum "no content, so no
sets sold, so no content". Regular
HDTV broadcasting in Europe only
started in 2004 when Belgium's
HD1 took the deliberate step to
break this impasse by serving up
content to stimulate the takeup
of sets. A similar impasse faced
efforts to stimulate interest in 3D
broadcasts, although the buying
public appears to have rejected
the proposition of wearing 3D
glasses at least for now. Ultra High
Definition could be regarded as the
latest initiative to achieve product
churn. In parallel, advanced digital
compression, fast broadband and
mobile/tablet technology all catalyse
consuming content any time, any
place on any device.
The breakout from broadcast to
broadband which accompanied
the advent of digital TV heralded
the start of a revolution which has

yet to reach a conclusion. Greater
reach delivers new commercial
opportunities for all the players in
the content production, aggregation,
delivery and consumption chain as
they target more eyeballs in more
ways on more devices. Yet the dash
for divergence has overlooked the
fact that the technology to deliver
subtitles across the new platforms
has not kept up with the delivery
capability, and accessibility is still
very much hit and miss. Why does
this matter? Partly because subtitles
are a legislated-for part of broadcast
content at European Parliament level,
with Member States encouraged
to apply ever-increasing provision
targets as channels are licensed,
and partly because access services
make sense: why disenfranchise
a significant proportion of the
potential viewership who might
otherwise consume the content
but are not able to because they
cannot hear the soundtrack or
cannot understand its language?
The wording of the European
Audiovisual Media Services Directive
of 2010 is clear: "Member States
shall encourage media service
providers under their jurisdiction
to ensure that their services are
gradually made accessible to people
with a visual or hearing disability."

However, the regulatory touch is still
light. In the UK, for example, live web
streams of broadcast programmes
are subject to the access services
requirements of television services,
whereas on-demand content is
not subject to statutory regulation
in the same way. It then falls to
voluntary provision, which in the
UK is stimulated by the Authority for
TV On Demand, or ATVOD.
In its 2013 report, ATVOD
highlights that the buck is being
passed between platform operators
and content providers regarding
who has responsibility for ensuring
that access services are delivered.
Few new services were introduced
during the preceding 12 months,
with issues such as operational or
technical difficulty, and cost, being
offered as "obstacles". A cynic might
argue that this is clear evidence
that self-regulation is not going
to work: indeed lobby groups are
pressing for regulation in this area
of content delivery, and government
may consider this if voluntary
progress is not made.
The United States FCC introduced
rules governing captioning of nonexempt online media content in
April 2012 (the IP closed captioning
rules), which set the time allowed
for captions to be added to online
content which had been captioned
when originally broadcast. The
time leeway gradually reduces to
15 days by March 2016. In April
2014 additional requirements came
into play concerning the quality
of captions in terms of textual
accuracy and timing.

Sticks should not be needed: the
carrot that captioning or subtitling
increases the number of people who
can access the content must be
good news for content providers.
And technological difficulty can
no longer be cited as a barrier:
Screen Subtitling Systems has
demonstrated at IBC2014 a feasible
and cost-effective solution for
providing good quality subtitles to
accompany web-delivered live or
recorded content. Broadcasters and
platform operators will no doubt be
heartened by this news - not least
because it can increase reach.
As far as production of subtitles
is concerned, much of the recent
development work by companies
such as Screen has been to facilitate
re-use across different technical
platforms. This minimises oncosts: once subtitles have been
prepared for given content, they
can be repurposed for broadcast
or streaming or VOD as required.
So the cost-effectiveness of the
already minimal additional cost of
producing subtitles - a fraction of a
percent of content production costs
- is increased the more platforms are
addressed. So cost cannot really be
cited as a barrier. Ultimately the true
value in access services is in the
delivery of additional audience - not
just people with hearing impairment,
but also those who use subtitles to
assist with language learning. In a
world where eyeballs count, access
services provision makes absolute
sense across as many platforms
as possible.


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In Broadcast - November 2014

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of In Broadcast - November 2014

In Broadcast - November 2014 - Intro
In Broadcast - November 2014 - Cover1
In Broadcast - November 2014 - Cover2
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 3
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 4
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 5
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 6
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 7
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 8
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 9
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 10
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 11
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 12
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 13
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 14
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 15
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 16
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 17
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 18
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 19
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 20
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 21
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 22
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 23
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 24
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 25
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 26
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 27
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 28
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 29
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 30
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 31
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 32
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 33
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 34
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 35
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 36
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 37
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 38
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 39
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 40
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 41
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 42
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 43
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 44
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 45
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 46
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 47
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 48
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 49
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 50
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 51
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 52
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 53
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 54
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 55
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 56
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 57
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 58
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 59
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 60
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 61
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 62
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 63
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 64
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 65
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 66
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 67
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 68
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 69
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 70
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 71
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 72
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In Broadcast - November 2014 - 77
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 78
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 79
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 80
In Broadcast - November 2014 - 81
In Broadcast - November 2014 - Cover4
In Broadcast - November 2014 - S1
In Broadcast - November 2014 - S2
In Broadcast - November 2014 - S3
In Broadcast - November 2014 - S4
In Broadcast - November 2014 - S5
In Broadcast - November 2014 - S6
In Broadcast - November 2014 - S7
In Broadcast - November 2014 - S8
In Broadcast - November 2014 - S9
In Broadcast - November 2014 - S10
In Broadcast - November 2014 - S11
https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202406
https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202405
https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202404
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https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202308
https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202307
https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202306
https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202305
https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202304
https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202303
https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202302
https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202301
https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202212
https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202211
https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202210
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https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202208
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https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202206
https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202205
https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202204
https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202203
https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202202
https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202201
https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202112
https://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_202111
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http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201912
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http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_NewYork2019
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http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201909
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http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201908
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http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/CTA-DAY1
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/CTA-VISITOR
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201906
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/CTA-PREVIEW
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201905
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201904
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_NABSHOW2019
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201903
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_cabsat2019
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201902
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201901
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_INREVIEW2018
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201812
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201811
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_NewYork2018
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201810
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_inshowguide2018
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201809
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201808
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201806
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http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201804
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_NABSHOW2018
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201803
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http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_cabsat2018
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201801
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201712
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201711
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201710
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_NABSHOWNYexpo2017
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201709
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_inshowguide2017
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201708
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201707
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201705
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_NABSHOW2017
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http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_cabsat2017
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201703
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http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_201701
http://europe.nxtbook.com/nxteu/lesommet/inbroadcast_INREVIEW2016
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