Sharing this excellent long legal perspective to help “deaf” using SL (sign language) to get effective communications they need for medical consultations.

Since 98% or more of mega-millions of deaf/deafened/hoh folks do not use SL, it’s important to have a good legal perspective for us also – many of us require Quality Live Captioning for effective communication. Essentially, the same suggestions apply as in the good article.

Read here:
And raise your own voices.
Join the CCAC if you care to discuss this with others. We hope you do.

Related advocacy piece on our webpages:
CCAC Flyer with logo CCAC and text about the organization


EDUCATION – Teachers, please watch:

April 29, 2017 Comments Off on EDUCATION – Teachers, please watch:

Good new video – as CCAC says for 7 years, just do it.

Much more to share on CCAC webpages – have a look soon.

What is the Power of Captioning?

April 25, 2017 Comments Off on What is the Power of Captioning?

What is “The Power of Captioning”? is an edited article from the CCAC newsletters published during 2012. We welcome your examples in comments here, and your questions, as always.

This is a concept that is vital for mega-millions of citizens who are …

  • Learning to read or wanting to boost reading skills
  • Learning a new language
  • In need of translations
  • Needing immediate transcription (full notes) without requiring note takers or a flawless memory
  • Employed or at leisure with others who have different accents, in situations with poor acoustics, noisy backgrounds (sports places, restaurants and bars, etc.)
  • Managing productive lives with different learning and listening styles (such as auditory perceptual differences, autism, tinnitus without hearing loss, others)
  • Doing business to reach wider markets via Search Engine Optimization – no search without good captions on any media online
  • Using captioning in situations rather than increasing volume, so as not to disturb others in very quiet places (e.g. libraries)
  • Navigating life with different hearing or no hearing (48 million people in USA alone, one in four or five globally)
  • Hearing people use captioning in all the above ways as well.

CCAC Logo with words Caption Universally



What Does Captioning Advocacy Mean?

April 24, 2017 Comments Off on What Does Captioning Advocacy Mean?


In our framework, there are two main categories of advocacy – legal advocacy, and grass roots citizen advocacy. CCAC embodies grass-roots advocacy done by CCAC members and many others in many different places and in a variety of ways.

Legal advocacy takes the legal route with attorneys who are indeed “advocates.” Many times, there is no significant change or progress, in some cultures, for some issues, without legal challenges. Legislative initiatives also require legal input.

Grass-roots advocacy also accomplishes change, and significant change, in different ways. Grass roots advocacy also may bolsters future legal efforts, when and if they become required.

From the dictionary (, advocates are those who (1) speak or write in favor of, support, urge or recommend publicly (something that is important), (2) speak and write publicly in defense of, or support of, a person or a cause, (3) plead for or in behalf of another, or (4) pleads the cause of another in the court of law.


In the CCAC, advocacy means asking for something needed (captioning), explaining why it is needed, pursuing the request to educate others, and aiming to ensure inclusion of quality captioning. Simply this.

Simply? It all depends on many factors, e.g., the person asking, the others who listen or not, the situation, the timing, and many more dynamics, both human and technology. Yet simply asking – that is a huge first step. Asking is good advocacy.

Advocacy is done for oneself, for others, and for future generations. What each individual shares in the CCAC community builds into future advocacy, understanding and action.

Consider only one example — asking for LIVE CAPTIONS (also called CART) in a classroom. If one family advocates for full verbatim speech-to-text – equal communication access – for a student who needs it, that advocacy will educate many others, and the advocacy efforts themselves (lots of energy, persistence, and finding allies) will build future equal rights for all.


Photo of L. Storck, CCAC founder and president, at Conference in Vienna, Austria 2011

We are all advocates! Some consumers, others providers, and many using captioning for many reasons beyond hearing loss and deafness.



Accessible Podcasts – Enjoy this one

April 19, 2017 Comments Off on Accessible Podcasts – Enjoy this one

Thanks to the CCAC community, this Podcast was first transcribed using a small CCAC grant. Then it was put on Amara so the captioning (text) could roll along just like on a video.

Go to this link:

Embed here but not showing. Anyone know why?

People with hearing loss, those who become deafened, and people who are deaf sometimes feel like outliers also. In communities that are open to differences, there’s a lot to share.


April 1, 2017 Comments Off on PODCASTS NEED ACCESS ALSO



That’s a public document – if you send it anyplace, please invite all the JOIN the CCCAC soon – we’ll make it very easy and our membership will welcome them.

A transcript is not the same thing as captioning for any media or for live events. Yet it’s the first step always for media captioning. We call this a good cousin to quality captioning.

In fact, shall copy the document here below – a work in progress. Add your suggestions:



Thank you to CCAC Members (Chris, Claude, and Andrea, Lauren, others) for the information below. Suggestions, corrections and additions invited –

An accurate transcript for your Podcast is essential for accessibility. Millions of good folks don’t hear clearly, if at all. They want to learn from you too. They want to enjoy your creation. Others like to have the transcript for other good reasons (when they don’t have time to listen to the entire podcast, they like to read quickly at first, return to the podcast later), and including a transcript allows your podcast to be found by search engines.


I’ve been using YouTube to create .srt files for videos, and it’s gotten a LOT more accurate over the last couple years. I download the .srt file and then use Aegisub to edit the subtitles and create either an .ass file for making “hardcoded” subtitles with more visual formatting (.ass supports different fonts and screen positions, and bold and italics and such) or an .srt for reuploading to YouTube or other video platforms that use .srt.

You can upload the audio file to YouTube using If I was doing it I would download the .srt file and edit that to make my transcript.


CCAC asked, “Can a machine speech to text system can do this from the podcast? “

Yes, it can be done: You just use the default video editor of your

computer and add to it the audio file and a black picture, then save

as a video (MP4 for instance). Then you can upload the video to

YouTube, and YouTube will autocaption it.

If the podcast is long (e.g. over 30 minutes) split

the audio file into two and make two mock videos, as above.


There is a group online that may do the transcript for low cost – check out


A commercial service online – one among many here:


CCAC volunteers are ready to offer help and other ideas – Get in touch, and/or join us! We welcome hearing folks as CCAC members too –  many!

Added 17 April 2017 – Using Amara you can have the text as actual captioning moving along the same screen as the audio/sounds/words: from Claude —
subtitled audio podcast made in Amara – by creating the Amara page by adding the podcast URL in the “Subtitle video”
<> page;

– copying their transcript in a text editor, slicing it in
subtitle-length chunks (i.e ca 80 characters, spaces included)
separated by a blank line, then saving the resultas a UTF-8 encoded
.txt file

– uploading the .txt file to the created Amara page

– using the Amara editor to synchronize the result of the upload into
proper subtitles, and publishing.

That’s more or less what Claude did here:
using the radio broadcast in


– I actually downloaded the original audio file (1) and reuploaded it
somewhere else (2), in case it disappeared from the original location.
But they could use their own URL for the MP3 if they intend to let it

– I did the original French transcript with Amara’s editor instead of
uploading it, but that’s neither here nor there.


– for someone hard of hearing or with scarce oral comprehension of the
original, having subtitles synced with the audio is better than having
a static transcript in a different window;

– even for people who can understand the original audio, the subtitles
generate an interactive transcript that can be opened by clicking the
icon that looks like a printed page bottom left of the player, which
is searchable: so if you want to hear again a given passage, you
search that interactive transcript for it, click on it and the audio
starts playing from there;

– it’s very easy to translate CC subtitles with the Amara editor: in
my example, “NonSentoMaLeggo” (meaning “I Don’tHear But I Read, so
presumably a deaf person) translated them into Italian, and Esther
Premkumar started to do the same in Spanish (and I did the English
translation).  – Place to be for Captioning Advocacy

Donations of any size welcome. CCAC is an official non-profit, all volunteers. Please use PayPal on any page of the CCAC website. Thanks if you do!

CCACAPTIONING.ORG Official Non-Profit Citizen Captioning Advocates. CCAC Mission-Inclusion of Quality Captioning Universally.,,,

Don’t Leave Us Out! Captioning Counts!

March 30, 2017 Comments Off on Don’t Leave Us Out! Captioning Counts!

This blogpost has now disappeared from a U.S. Government page – it was published in 2012 and it still is one of our best articles for captioning advocacy. Hope you like it. CCAC is now 7 years old – time flies. The article below is not changed from 2012 however. Lots has been successfully accomplished since 2012 – enjoy recent posts and also updates on the CCAC website. Blog, for 13 June, 2012, by invitation, including Video, “Don’t Leave Us Out!”



“Don’t Leave Us Out” rings familiar bells with all of us living with “disability.” For a huge and richly-diverse population – mega-millions of us with hearing loss and people who are deafened or deaf – it signifies a struggle for a visible identity, and asserts an urgent and vital need for inclusion of quality captioning everyday and universally.

Captioning inclusion? What are you talking about, cartoons?

We are talking about a disturbing gap in communication access for millions of people who cannot hear well or are deaf, who speak, and most of whom do not use sign language. We are also speaking about captioning needs among millions of others with different language and learning needs. Captioning is a “language” that is way beyond one line of text under a photo, much more than few words in a funny cartoon, and is not merely a transcript or another page of text, but is an equivalent experience of listening via reading captioning. This is called equal access.

We are talking about inclusion of quality speech-to-text. Call it translation, interpreting, reporting, transcription, or plain talking. Speech-to-text is the real-time conversion of speech and sounds to visual words, done with high accuracy and immediately. We need captioning when we speak together with others, in person or via media and technologies.  Literacy is important in our lives, since we read all the words, and captioning is vital as our receptive language. Communication access is most of life.

It’s time to move away from an embedded concept that thinks about so many as dumb mute, or daft; or assumes most people who are deaf or have a hearing loss use signing. We are deaf also – or live with hearing loss – we speak and need captioning.    

Don’t you read lips? …why don’t you use sign language? …did you turn on your hearing aids? …don’t you know that implants cure deafness now?”

Instead of those questions, it’s past time for us to be asked –

Is the captioning turned on? …is the size and background readable for you? …do you need a real-time verbatim captioning professional for communication access in school … for job-hunting… at work …for medical consultations… to listen to politicians for informed voting …in the airport…for healthy social activities such as theater and movies? 

Is the automated captioning high quality? Are you guessing what half the sentences are saying due to errors? Is the automatic system making any sense at all? Do you need assistance in convincing public places to provide communication access? How can we promote more awareness and resources for all who need quality captioning?

Forty-eight million people have a hearing loss or deafness in the USA, with millions more around the world. Most have established relationships that depend on oral communications, yet they do not hear enough to comprehend the many voices in everyday human experiences. Sometimes, it takes years to find captioning inclusion.

There is some progress, yet it’s still patchy and slow. In many regions and most arena of everyday life, it requires repeated requests, a legal assault, or years of legislative discussion. Much media on the Internet is not captioned.

Captioning is lacking at town meetings (real-time captioning), in schools, for weddings and funeral, in theaters and museums, and for jury boxes. The bottom line is a huge waste of educated, talented, and creative citizens who are excluded due to lack of captioning inclusion.  

Most people using aids, implants and other technologies also need captioning for much of everyday life, especially all group communications, in small to large groups, for training and employment, participation in their communities, and much more.

Headlines tell us that boomers are living longer and teenagers are losing hearing due to loud music and noise in modern life. Other news tells us about new systems and machine translations. Keep in mind these systems are for one person talking to his or her device. They are not useful for actual human conversations. Captioning professionals, along with improved systems, are required now, and always will be, for decades to come, due to the significance and variety of modern human communication needs.    

Why spend the money? Why pay for electricity, clean water, and ramps for mobility access? Communication access via captioning is a human right and a civil obligation.  

VIDEO HERE – Go to CCAC webpage →> 


CCAC, created December 2009, has grown into a membership organization of significant numbers. (It becomes an official non-profit in 2012). Volunteers advocate regularly, as well as reaching out to educate via the website and other CCAC resources (  The focus is grass-roots advocacy for captioning where none exists now.

CCAC is not a deaf or hearing loss group, since captioning also provides bottom-line benefits for millions who are not deaf.  It creates an immediate record (transcript), allows language translations, and maximizes online search functions.

CCAC salutes all organizations working on captioning issues among larger diverse goals, and invites all to come together in the CCAC to share information, push forward more captioning advocacy, and accomplish the mission – inclusion of quality captioning universally. CCAC is a hub and meeting place.

New members and concrete support are always welcome. CCAC advocacy accomplishments in two short years are significant, stemming from membership discussions in the online working community. For two examples only, a huge national organization for older adults has begun inclusion of captioning for all webinars online thanks to CCAC member advocacy; and a regional theater accomplished inclusion via theater captioning thanks to energetic advocacy by another CCAC member with good local collaborations.

The newest CCAC advocacy project, the video above, makes its debut on this site. We invite you to place it on your own blogs and websites soon. If you do, let us know and we’ll say thanks. Don’t leave us out!

Lauren E. Storck, Ph.D. Founder and President, Collaboration for Communication Access via Captioning (CCAC),


As it says on top, this article is unedited from five years ago. Much has been accomplished since then for access and inclusion with quality captioning, and there is so much more to do.

We need you! Join today –  as an all volunteer community, new voices and energies are always valuable. If the suggested donation is a hardship for any captioning user/consumer, tell us and it’s waived. If a hardship for providers or students of captioning – let’s talk on emails soon.  

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