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RE: sounds vs sound effects

From: Bailey, Bruce <Bruce.Bailey@ed.gov>
Date: Mon, 19 Dec 2005 14:16:10 -0500
Message-ID: <CCDBDCBFA650F74AA88830D4BACDBAB50B2D4A7E@wdcrobe2m02.ed.gov>
To: <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
Cc: "Gregg Vanderheiden" <gv@trace.wisc.edu>

> In our guidelines - we use the term sound effects in several places [snip]
> Unless someone objects - we will change these occurrences of "sound effects" to "sounds".

Agreed, the distinction between "important sounds" and "important sound effects" is unwarranted, especially since a goal of sound engineering is to make the effects appear natural.  The key qualifier is "important" as much sound is *not* reflected in captions.  I think there was an earlier draft that referenced "dialog and auditory information required for comprehension or meaning" (or something like that) but "dialog, identities, and important sounds" is even better.

On a related note, I suggest that the definition for audio description could be improved a little.  Currently it reads:
<current>
Audio narration that is added to the soundtrack to explain important details that cannot be understood from the main soundtrack alone.  During pauses in dialog, audio descriptions of video provide information about actions, characters, scene changes and on-screen text to people who are blind or visually impaired.
</current>

My concerns with the current glossary entry follow.  (1) Definitions usually benefit by avoiding root terms.  (2) The term "pauses" is possibly ambiguous because the (bleeding edge) idea of "extended audio descriptions" which has been introduced.  (3) The "of video" phrase is superfluous and possibly distracts from audio description being used for Web media.

I therefore suggest for consideration:
<proposed>
Verbal narration that is added to the soundtrack to explain important details that cannot be understood from the main soundtrack alone.  During naturally occurring pauses in dialog, audio descriptions provide information about actions, characters, scene changes, and on-screen text to people who are blind or visually impaired.
</proposed>
Received on Monday, 19 December 2005 19:16:25 GMT

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