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FCC Releases Video Description Rules

From: Geoff Freed <geoff_freed@wgbh.org>
Date: Thu, 25 Aug 2011 18:49:25 -0400
To: "public-html-a11y@w3.org" <public-html-a11y@w3.org>
Message-ID: <B3526F4AC3C3C64388BF661A8B2112A77A906ECE40@EXCHCCR.wgbh.org>

video-description enthusiasts will want to take note of today's important announcement from the U.S. FCC, below.



Subject: FCC Releases Video Description Rules

On August 25, 2011, the Commission released a Report and Order to adopt rules requiring video description for certain television programming.  Video description is narrated descriptions of a television programís key visual elements inserted into natural pauses in the programís dialogue.  Video descriptions improve access to television programs for millions of Americans who are blind or visually impaired.

The Commission adopted rules requiring video description in 2000, but those rules were struck down by a federal court in 2002.  In 2010, Congress enacted the Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act (CVAA), which required reinstatement of those video description rules, with certain modifications.

These video description rules require ABC, CBS, Fox, and NBC affiliates in the top 25 market areas and cable and satellite television providers with more than 50,000 subscribers to provide video description.  ABC, CBS, Fox, NBC, USA, the Disney Channel, TNT, Nickelodeon, and TBS are each required to provide 50 hours of video-described prime time or childrenís programming per calendar quarter.  Full compliance with the rules is required on July 1, 2012.

Report and Order:

Copps Statement:

Clyburn Statement:
Received on Thursday, 25 August 2011 22:58:21 UTC

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