FCC, Federal Communications Commission

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American media regulator releases online captioning approach

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The US media and communications regulator, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), has released its draft approach on captioning of online video content. This is a major step in identifying how America will regulate captioning of online materials.

The Commission Document makes it clear that regulation does not apply to user-generated content. This is complementary to the 21st Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act of 2010 that states that a TV station that shows one of its captioned programs in an offline version must retain the captions for the online version.

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FCC reminds broadcasters to make emergency information accessible


The US communications and media regulator, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), has published a Public Notice reminding broadcasters, cable and satellite television operators and all other domestic video program providers to provide access services on emergency information.

Given the recent floods and tornados across the United States, the FCC emphasised the importance of ensuring that people who have vision or hearing impairment have access to emergency information, especially all ‘critical details’ pertaining to the emergency, and how to respond.

The requirement applies to all distributors of video programming to American households, with no exceptions. All distributors must ensure the information they provide is accessible, whatever signal or medium they use to distribute the contact.

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American disabilities association argues for sensible audio description regulations


The American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) has made a submission to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), making numerous recommendations about how audio description should be regulated when it is introduced as a compulsory service on television next year.

Under provisions of the Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act of 2010 rules regarding mandatory levels of audio description will be reinstated on 8 October 2011, with required hours of described programming beginning in the first quarter of 2012.

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FCC to ensure deaf-blind Americans have access to 21st century communications technology


The US media and communications regulator, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), has announced that it will spend US$10 million per year to provide low-income people who are deaf-blind with access to 21st century communications technology.

In line with the 21st Century Video and Communications Accessibility Act of 2010, the pilot program will help ensure that individuals who are deaf-blind have access to the Internet, and advanced communications, including interexchange services and advanced telecommunications and information services.

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