Recently, new legislation, the “Twenty-first Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act of 2010,” takes us one step closer to universal access of content on the Web.  The new law speaks directly to UU values and urges us ever closer to offering accessible video content throughout our web sites.  Not only is captioned video the law but it is one component to a sound SEO strategy to boot.  In a recent blog post by our captioning vendor, 3Play Media, Josh Miller summarizes the legislation and its impact.

The UUA’s ITS Web Team strives to meet the highest accessibility standards because we know that captioned video and transcribed audio is necessary for the 36 million people in the US who are hard of hearing.  I don’t know the numbers internationally.  It’s also a valuable aid for ESL students around the world.

If you post a video on UUA.org, we encourage you to supply a transcript if you have one.  Further, we can act as broker with 3PlayMedia on behalf of your staff group to produce captions and transcripts for your video in just a few days. The process can be pricey at $1.50 to $3.50 per minute, depending on the video quality, length, and number of speakers.

If you are just starting to work on making your video accessible, YouTube has a decent low/no cost option. The captions aren’t perfect, but the price is right.  When you post the video on YouTube, it can create captions for you but you’ll need a little sweat equity and help from 3Play to make them usable on UUA.org and elsewhere.

If your staff group or district office has video to post to UUA.org or your own website and needs to discuss best practices or tools, please contact multimedia@uua.org. Information about posting video and audio on UUA.org  is online, including a form you can use to let us know about your video.

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Tim Griffin

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