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Accommodating the Deaf and Hard of Hearing by Captioning Live Events

Thanks to government mandates, deaf and hard of hearing TV viewers can depend upon closed captioning to translate the spoken word into text so they can enjoy the show. But these same people often find themselves at a loss when attending live events, presentations, and seminars, where such captioning is not ubiquitous.

Failure to provide captioning for live events is not only unfair to the deaf and hard of hearing among us, it also diminishes the reach and impact of the presentations being delivered. While the Covid-19 pandemic has impacted when, where, and how the public can gather, smaller scale events, such as community meetings and seminars, can still be held if safety measures are taken. And, if near real-time captioning were to be provided in these settings, all attendees would be able to fully understand what is being said around them.

It also pays to look beyond today’s Covid restrictions and begin laying the groundwork for a tomorrow where captioning—open, closed, and archival—is more widely available at large-scale live events such as:

• Museums and attractions

• Graduation ceremonies

• Funerals and tributes

• Public meetings, rallies, and conventions

• Stage shows

Until recently, acquiring accurate, near real-time captioning technology only made sense for those in the broadcast arena. But, ENCO’s enCaption is changing the game by making automated captioning technology more affordable and practical for broader use, such as live events. This includes overlaying live open captions over video that’s displayed on large on-stage monitors, as well as live-streaming captioned video that can be accessed using mobile devices during live events.

In our upcoming blogs, we’ll take a closer look at how enCaption and other ENCO products can enrich any live event experience.

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