Call to caption parliament

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Tuesday, 10 November 2015 11:19am

The Federal Parliament is improving its accessibility to people with disabilities. This includes its digital presence through its website and online services. It also provides streaming video services of the House of Representatives, the Senate, Federation Chamber and various committees when they are in session.

Outside the entrance of Parliament House in Canberra

The successful supplier will need to provide live captioning services for the different chambers and committees. According to the tender documents the service will be ramped up over a period of time, starting with a limited service in the House of Representatives and Senate and building up to all live output after a year. The captions will be output as part of the Parliament’s video streaming services.

Media Access Australia is a technical adviser for the tender process and CEO Alex Varley commended the Australian Parliamentary Services (APS) approach as being thorough and well thought out.

“Providing captions from all chambers and committees is a significant undertaking. APS has sensibly opted for a gradual ramp up of the service to ensure that a high quality service is delivered from the first day,” said Varley.

“The APS team had already done some trials of live captioning its material with some providers, and also attended lots of captioning events and talked to television services and others to really understand how they could potentially deliver the service.”

It is expected that the service will commence with the start of Parliament in 2016 and ramp up during that year.

APS already delivers captioning on prerecorded video content, such as the Parliament Education Office’s range of videos about how parliament works.

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