All films and videos online must include captioning

September 30, 2011 § 3 Comments

If this is a film that includes a deaf or hoh person, include captioning – on the trailer too. Make that ALL films and all videos online.


with thanks to deaf news.


Open or Closed Captioning?

September 29, 2011 § 2 Comments

Open captioning is visible to all and cannot be turned off. 
Closed is when you or someone else must find the control and
turns it on, be it for videos online, movies/cinema, theater, other media.. 
Problems with closed captions (compared to open captioning
For all) include the following: 
a. It's often very difficult to find how to turn on the cc - systems vary so much online.
b. Millions do not know it's there at all.
c. We have a huge issue of communication access for all across the country (and globally). 
We suggest continuing education and advocacy for inclusion of much more captioning universally (e.g. on all videos online).
d. An argument for closed captioning reminds us of the folks who complain loudly (we are told) in the cinema when captioning is showing - we say, get used to it. 
Focus on the communication that works for you - speech, text, whatever. 
e. Use the language you need and prefer; it's nice to have a choice, so many do not have any choice - they have no cc at all for much online.



Continuing Internet Captioning (and Netflix)

September 28, 2011 Comments Off on Continuing Internet Captioning (and Netflix)

Good blog here is suggested reading:

the final paragraph is so important – one way or another – we seek equal communication access now! the Internet is part of everyday life, no doubt about it.


Internet Captioning

September 26, 2011 Comments Off on Internet Captioning

A new comment is now online about this important topic –



More About Theater Captioning Achievement

September 25, 2011 Comments Off on More About Theater Captioning Achievement

This is copied from a special edition of the newsletter EMERGE. (The web address for this issue is here:

Welcoming the Deaf & Hard of Hearing to Live Performances at Chrysler Hall
Emerge Special Edition ~September 2011 VOL. # TWO ISSUE #4
Interview with Angela Hill-The One Who Spearheaded National Open Captioning Initiative coming to Hampton Roads, Virginia
Q. What is the National Open Captioning Initiative?
A. The National Open Captioning Initiative is a partnership between selected performing arts venues in the country and the Theater Development Fund (TDF) which is based in New York City. TDF supplies the incentive grant for one year to certain venues to provide open captioning enabling the Deaf and Hard of Hearing community to attend live performances, giving them an opportunity to fully appreciate and experience in action how the spoken, sung, and/or uttered words are displayed as text in a synchronized fashion. Hopefully at the end of the year the venues will continue to provide open captioning on their own. TDF’s website is
Q. What can you tell us about your involvement with open captioning?
A. My involvement with the Open Captioning Initiative actually began quite informally. To understand how it got to this point would mean going back to over a year ago. I was just utterly frustrated with being left out of attending a number of social events that were happening in the area due to my profound hearing loss. I remember around the spring of last year (2010) how I would ride in the car with my husband, passing the Seven Venues board, at the intersection of Brambleton Avenue and St. Paul’s Blvd, with its bright lights, scrolling to announce upcoming events and feeling some-what dejected because I knew I couldn’t go without having communication access in the form of captioning or even CART (Communication Access Real Time Translation). Eventually, I decided that no one will know what I or others like me needed if I didn’t voice my concerns. Soon thereafter, I began putting in requests for CART/captioning at a number of venues. One request was adamantly denied. However, Willett Hall in Portsmouth, Virginia; Chrysler Hall in Norfolk, Virginia and Sandler Center in Virginia Beach, Virginia accommodated, although they never had a request for CART/Captioning and really didn’t know nor understood what it entails. After attending my first play with CART at Willett Hall, I researched and came in contact with the Collaborative for Communication Access via Captioning (CCAC) and Mrs. Shirley Confino-Rehder, Chair of Norfolk Mayor’s Commission for Persons with Disabilities who made this initiative a reality in Norfolk. The website for CCAC is
“No one is as capable of gratitude as one who has emerged from the kingdom of night.” ~Ellie Wiesel
Angela Hill, Advocate
Shows at Chrysler Hall 215 St. Pauls Blvd. Norfolk, VA 23510 Box Office: 1-800-745-3000 (Voice
Rain: A Tribute to the Beatles, Saturday, October 1, 2011 at 2:00 pm Beauty and the Beast, Saturday, November 5, 2011 at 2:00 pm Straight No Chaser, Friday, November 11, 2011 at 7:30 pm Cirque Dreams Holidaze, Saturday, November 26, 2011 at 2:00 pm Rock of Ages, Saturday, January 7, 2012 at 2:00 pm Wicked, Saturday, March 10, 2012 at 2:00 pm Hal Holbrook’s Mark Twain Tonight!, Friday, May 4, 2012 at 7:30 pm
Q. What are your goals for yourself and open captioning?
A. My goal with captioning, in general, is to make sure it
continues to find its rightful place in society not only at venues
but at houses of worship and other places where
communication access with this auxiliary aid is needed.
Actually, I would like to expand beyond just captioning but
other forms of accommodation that can benefit someone with
hearing loss, sight loss and dual sensory impairment. I guess I
feel so passionate about captioning because I want to enjoy it
while I can since I also have retinitis pigmentosa.
Q. How would you describe yourself?
A. Wow! That is a tough one. Smile. Basically, I would say
that I am pretty much a private person who would much
rather be in the background, not making any waves. Yet, I
realize that staying quiet never gets anything done, especially
when you see people enjoying and doing things that others
take for granted. It’s easy to just accept the status quo and
just go with the flow. Yet, sometimes a person has to make
noise and request what they need, not so much to benefit
themselves but others who share the same challenges. When
necessary, I can be relentlessly persistent. (smile)
Q. What has been your greatest reward thus far?
A. My greatest reward, thus far, is seeing how all of this is
coming together with the Open Captioning Initiative. This
time last year I would have never ever known that the end
result would lead to this. I’ve met some wonderful people
along the way and it has certainly made me a better advocate.
Q. Tell us something that no one would know about you.
A. People who will meet me, seeing that I have a profound
hearing loss, would find it interesting to know that I graduated
cum laude over 20 years ago, with a degree in……………of all
things……….Music Education, with a focus on the piano.
Smile. Although I no longer play music and have not done so
in a very long time, due to my progressive hearing loss, I feel
with such advancements in technology that anything is
Q. What keeps you motivated?
A. First and foremost God! Hands down. Also knowing that
my parents are somewhere up there rooting for me, as well as
having the support of my husband makes it all worthwhile.
Q. What is the one piece of advice you would give to the people
who would benefit from open captioning?
A. The piece of advice I would give a person concerning the
Open Captioning Initiative is to not allow his or her hearing
loss to keep him or her uninvolved. Come out and enjoy live
performances! Technology is now at our disposal to help us
access the spoken language. Not too long ago, the status quo
was to “accept the hand that was dealt you”, coming to the
conclusion that some places were just off-limit due to our
hearing loss. But, that is changing. We now have this
wonderful opportunity to enjoy something that so many
people take for granted. I believe you will treasure the
Emerge Special Edition ~September 2011 VOL. # TWO ISSUE #4
How can people contact you?
Feel free in contacting me at
Promoting awareness and providing support
for the inclusion of people with disabilities
and their families into faith communities.
I am the Chair for the Norfolk Mayor’s Commission for Persons with Disabilities (NMCPWD). I also Chair the South Hampton Roads Disability Services Board. (SHRDSB) My charge, as with all Commissioners and Board members that serve, is to enhance the lives of persons with disabilities to the greatest extent possible. The ADA is the most familiar law, but regulations have been written that affect employment, housing, transportation, telecommunication, and all areas of recreation. More and more people are now aware of the importance of integration for everyone in today’s society, not because of the laws, but because it is the right thing to do.
I met Angela Hill last September 2010. The SHRDSB held a conference of employment for persons with disabilities in local government and she called to ask if they could accommodate her need for CART services. The City agreed. Introducing herself, Angela spoke about her desire to have Real Life Captioning in our theatres in the Hampton Roads.
Our Commission decided to make that one of the goals for the year. I did some research on who the contacts would have to be then we were ready to prepare the proposals. Angela kept feeding me information about Real Live Captioning around the country.
In the spring, Angela received a note from Don DePew, a vendor representing the Theatre Development Fund’s (TDF) National Open Captioning Initiative (NOCI). He advised her of their search for applicants for their NOCI initiative in Virginia and suggested finding a contact to help advocate this grant. Angela sent me the information.
After a lot of teamwork and cooperation we were told that we won the grant in June.
We will now assist in making sure that the information of the RLC performances is well advertised. Our goal is to encourage patronage so Real Live Captioning will continue with the Seven Venues and reach beyond.
Shirley Confino-Rehder
Chair, Norfolk Mayor’s Commission for Persons With Disabilities
The Collaborative for Communication Access via Captioning (CCAC) is the grassroots not-for-profit captioning advocacy community working for inclusion of text for spoken language wherever needed. CCAC is all volunteers. There is no other captioning advocacy group like this any place.
Emerge Special Edition ~September 2011 VOL. # TWO ISSUE #4
Our Purpose: to assist persons with disabilities in achieving more independence; to promote awareness; and provide a focal point for input from the disabled community into the City’s decision-making process.
NORFOLK DEPARTMENT OF HUMAN SERVICES 741 Monticello Avenue Norfolk, VA 23510
Open/Closed Captioning is the displaying of text on visual media such as TV and LCD screen, etc. The difference between open captioning and closed captioning is closed captioning can be turned on and off. CART(Communication Access Real-time Translation) is also the display of text real-time and is another option for effective communication for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing. CART can be used for virtually any forum; i.e., the school/college classroom for students, courtroom, conventions, seminars, medical appointments, graduations, etc. For those persons who do not know sign language, CART and Captioning are very effective means of communication. The Deaf/Hard of Hearing person/student just needs to request the service and by law, the establishment should provide it. Particularly, the 1973 Rehabilitation Act (section 504) and the Americans with Disabilities Act (Title II or III) entitle the Deaf and Hard of Hearing to such services. Visit the DOJ website for more information: and look at this publication –
Now, many accolades are to be given to Chrysler Hall for reaching out and opening its doors to the Deaf and Hard of Hearing community in Hampton Roads. It’s an exciting time and we’re all thrilled because this segment of the population will no longer be disenfranchised from enjoying the arts. Of course, the decision as to whether to continue to offer this service will depend on the support and demand from the Deaf and Hard of Hearing community. Let’s all do our part to spread the word.
Education, Entertainment, & Exposure is what you will receive at the 2012 Emerge Conference.
Interested in sponsoring?
Email for more information and what benefits you will receive for sponsoring.
Where the Talented Become Stars
Po Box 556
Newport News, VA 23607
Emerge Special Edition ~September 2011 VOL. # TWO ISSUE #4
Lois Boyle
Registered Merit Court Reporter
CART Provider
(757)719-0279 (cell)
(757)627-6554 (work)
If you need a Court Reporter
208 E. Plume Street, Suite 214 Norfolk, VA 23510
Helpful Links
 Theater Development Fund:
 Collaborative for Communication Access via Captioning(CCAC):
 Angela Hill:
 Norfolk Mayor’s Commission for Persons with Disabilities:
 See how open captioning looks:

Three Cheers for CCAC Member Success! Theater Captioning

September 24, 2011 § 1 Comment

Here’s Angela (click on the video link below) and the story of first time inclusion of Theater Captioning in her area. Hoorah with many cheers for her and everyone involved, the networking that started in the CCAC, and the local teams.

It takes a village, never give up. Grass roots advocacy works! The CCAC mission is to advocate for inclusion of quality captioning universally. Much of the world does not get it yet – we need captioning for inclusion – it’s our language; we do not use sign language (fine if you do, majority of deaf, deafened and people with hearing loss do not). See this and join the cheering today:


Great New Article – Mobile CART (Real Time STT)

September 20, 2011 § 2 Comments

Ever want CART for a museum tour? Another walk-about for work, for school, for anything? Read this online, with thanks to our CCAC members! There’s a nice photo too. (Go to: or continue here. Comments invited as always.
Mobile CART
CART, Art and the Metropolitan Museum of Art: Mobile CART at the Met
by Ruth D. Bernstein

I’m a volunteer for the Access Programs at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (Met), (on Facebook and here.) It’s a job I really enjoy, that is why I was pleased to take a walk into the future in the spring of 2011 when I took part in the first demonstration of a mobile CART system at the Met presented by Ms. Mirabai Knight. I attended this very special gallery tour with Rebecca McGinnis, the Met’s Access Coordinator and Deepa Shastri, Live Events Programme Officer of London’s STAGETEXT.
Computer Assisted Real Time Transcription (CART), allows people who have a hearing loss to see what is being said when they go to theater, the movies, attend a lecture or watch TV. The audience is seated and reads the words on a screen, typed by a seated CART provider.
Mobile CART was developed by Ms. Knight, a certified CART provider. The system allows the provider to walk through museum galleries or other venues with a steno machine, typing the words being said by the docent/guide and transmitting them wirelessly to multiple tablets or smart phones. For detailed information about how this system works, click here.)
STAGETEXT is a not for profit organization based in London that has been providing theater captioning for the last ten years. They recently received funding to develop captioning/CART access for public talks/lectures or tours in museums and galleries.
Ms. Shastri, who found Ms. Knight’s service on the web with the help of Tabitha Allum, Chief Executive of STAGETEXT, made the initial contact with the Met through me. She then worked with Ms. Knight, Ms. McGInnis and Christena Gunther to set up the demonstration. She visited Washington D.C. and New York “to see new or similar captioning initiatives within the museum context for deaf, deafened and hard of hearing visitors who may need captioning to supplement their hearing devices because they have difficulty following talks with assistive listening devices alone.”
Here’s Ms. Shastri’s description of what happened at the demonstration:
“Mirabai’s mobile CART was an excellent way to access the live talk. We were able to enjoy the speaker along with the hearing visitors. The Samsung Tablet, although heavy after carrying it for long periods (Ruth, you shared the load with me too), provided the perfect font size to read at a comfortable speed. There were 7 lines, allowing time to look at the images before going back to read the text missed while looking at the images the docent was referring to. During CART museum talks, docents need to make minor adjustments when referring to the images by pointing longer and clarifying when they are talking about a different image. Ms. Knight was well prepared. She preprogrammed key words into her directory so there were very few mistakes. Mirabai’s presence also meant she could hear the questions asked by the participants and type them out. It was a great opportunity for me to see whether it is worth pursuing this in UK and I have to say YES definitely! “
I really enjoyed this captioned presentation and agree with Ms. Shastri’s assessment that mobile CART/Art can expand access opportunities at museums and other venues for people with hearing loss. It is an exciting and welcome step forward for everyone, one the Met staff hopes to be able to repeat in the near future.
Ruth D. Bernstein has been advocating for people with hearing loss for over 25 years. She is a member of the Manhattan Chapter of the Hearing Loss Association of America, was Co Coordinator of the advocates for better communication , an advocacy group allied with the Center for Hearing and Communication and was a member of the Museum Access Consortium Advisory Committee (MAC).

Film Trailer with Captioning

September 15, 2011 Comments Off on Film Trailer with Captioning

Sharing this here – film-maker invited to add comments too, anyone!

Film: Beyond Silence – Shall we talk about it?

September 7, 2011 Comments Off on Film: Beyond Silence – Shall we talk about it?

Captioning Enthusiasts,
I much enjoyed this German film last night (from 1996) – Beyond Silence.
Thank goodness for good subtitles (in English).
Have others seen it? Some of the signing was not translated (perhaps on purpose).
While it illustrates the Deaf world and the complexities of being a hearing child of two deaf parents, and at first view, is mainly “D” issues, it might serve as a fruitful discussion piece.
Anyone want to plan a film showing and discussion? …to build bridges – expand deaf studies – e.g. we might be able to use the subtitles also – as they are, for film viewing of course, and even more, to imagine captioning for all the important human beings and everyday situations in this story – the child, her parents, extended family, the teachers, etc. If you watch it, you’ll see where captioning in their real lives might have made some difference too.


ccac is the place to be for captioning advocacy

CCAC Guest Blogger: The Power of Captioning

September 6, 2011 Comments Off on CCAC Guest Blogger: The Power of Captioning

The Power of Captioning – a new blog published here:

And copied here:

The Power of Captioning (c) by Lauren E. Storck

CCAC copyrights the phrase The Power of Captioning – just so you all know! 🙂

We include the symbol for copyright – trademark for this phrase. We’ve noted that some others are beginning to use similar phrases, find with us. Yet the words “The Power of Captioning” belongs to the CCAC, author is L.E. Storck.

Gael Hannan has invited me to talk about captioning – which is my passion and my pleasure. I may not make you laugh, but  I hope to illustrate how extremely important captioning inclusion is for millions of people.

Communication is crucial to relationships; it’s darn hard to have meaningful relations at home, at work, and in society without effective communications.  All people with hearing loss depend to some degree on visual clues to understand – even those who use hearing aids, cochlear implants, loops and other assistive technology to boost or focus sound.   Lip reading gives us 35 to 50% of the conversation, but comprehension jumps to 100% with captioning, which is “speech-to-text” translation, the visual, textual display of all words spoken by all voices in any event. Captioning is delivered in real-time or prepared in advance, such as in the case of non-live television shows.

One in seven people globally have hearing loss and deafness, and the majority of us use speech. Captioning is a powerful component of our communication; it’s our receptive language, a “ramp” for inclusion in our daily interactions and activities.  Captioning inclusion allows us to fully participate in society, to use our skills, our experiences, our knowledge, and our abilities to give back.

“Real time captioning” is immediate and accurate, translating the spoken word to text in meetings, lectures, social events, and important conversations with doctors, lawyers, loved ones, and tax collectors.  In North America, it’s called “CART”, Communication Access Real-time Translation, and is provided by a professional captioner, a real human being who provides the service in schools, on the job, on the telephone, in theaters, to name just a few places.

Other forms of captioning include TV closed captioning which allows the user to turn the words on or off.  In the  cinema, new captioning technologies are being introduced, and in many museums and other cultural and city attractions, captions help make the spoken word understandable. There is a growing need for captioning on the Internet; so much of modern life is online, yet people with hearing loss are still excluded if video voiceovers do not include captioning.

Captioning benefits are not limited to the hearing loss population. Captioning allows participation by people with a variety of different listening and learning styles.

• Learning to read – text in the classroom, on TV, and online help new readers
• Learning a new language – translations are easier with full accurate text
• Business applications – when an immediate written transcript is required, or for anyone when there are often different accents, poor acoustics,  etc.

In spite of all the benefits, when we ask for captioning, our request is often ignored or denied. “What’s CART?” “Why can’t you read lips?” “We can only provide sign language for you!” But contrary to established beliefs, 95% or more of people who are deaf or have a hearing loss do not communicate with a sign language, which is a different visual communication entirely.

We need captioning inclusion now, for news, entertainment, sports and so much more so that we can enjoy healthy and full lives.

For more information on universal, quality captioning inclusion, visit our website run by volunteers: Email us with your ideas and suggestions

Remember this: captioning captures communications for all of us.

About The Author:  Lauren Storck is an Advocate for Accessibility Equality. She is the founder of the grass-roots captioning advocacy network called the CCAC (see above). She inherited her severe hearing loss, as a surprise, about 11 years ago. She wears two hearing aids, and has chosen not to have surgery for implants, for now. With a few decades of experience in other professional pursuits, she is currently involved with the CCAC and other non-profits, to build bridges among people and celebrate our differences. The CCAC blog is one place she loves to talk –

 by  on September 5, 2011 · 
CCAC Readers – Check out this new publication online. Gael has written some great posts, informative for all of us! See

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