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Best Practices
for the
Audio Description
of Live Events
Accessible Media Inc.
(AMI)
Robert Pearson
March 4th, 2015
9:00am ...
Accessible Media Inc. (AMI)
Make accessible media for all Canadians
• Overview
Accessible Media Inc. (AMI)
• A not-for-profit
• Three broadcast channels, website
• Mandated as must-carry services for a...
Accessible Media Inc. (AMI)
• AMI-audio; magazines, books, local and
original programs
• AMI-tv; open described, closed ca...
Financial Model
• Per subscriber
– AMI-audio: $0.04
– AMI-tv: $0.20
– AMI-télé: $0.28
• AMI-télé paid in Francophone marke...
In Canada, it’s Described Video
• Described video (DV) is a narrated description
of a program's main visual elements, such...
Description Roadmap
Timeline
• April 2011 to June 2012
– Described Video Working Group
• June 2012 to June 2013
– Post-Pro...
Post-Production DV Examples
AMI YouTube Channel
• DV PSA Rainforest
• DV PSA Hospital
• AMI Old House
• AMI Diner
• Murdoc...
Industry adopted Described Video Best Practices
+
Internally developed guidelines based upon the
unique experiences of eac...
Post-Production DV Best Practices
Artistic Guidelines
1. Individual/Physical Characteristics
2. Scene Transitions
3. Visua...
Live Event Description
Background
• Less than a thousand hours of live description
ever broadcast by all networks in Canad...
Live Event Description
Requirements
• Knowledge, background and experience
• Recruitment, research and rehearsal are
neces...
Characteristics: Live DV event
Definition
• A process of listening, watching and
narrating while determining where the
des...
Live DV Best Practices
Logistical
1. Research
2. Physical Location
3. Producer, Describer Relationship
4. Characteristics ...
Live DV Best Practices
Technical and Artistic Guidelines
• Role of the Describer
1. Primary descriptions – Descriptions th...
Best Practices Downloads
• Go to AMI.ca, select Media Accessibility
• Post-Production v. 2 and Live v. 1
• Next versions: ...
AMI-player
• Launched October 30th, 2014
• Providing an Accessible Broadcast Experience
(ABE)
• Structurally accessible wi...
Described Video TV Guide
Contact
• Robert.Pearson@ami.ca
• http://www.ami.ca
• Twitter: @a11ymedia
• Facebook: Accessible Media Inc.
• YouTube:
htt...
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Best Practices for the Audio Description of Live Events

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Published on

Over the course of the last few years AMI has led,
developed and seen the adoption of a set of post-
production audio description best practices within
the Canadian broadcasting industry.

The primary goal in their development was the delivery of consistent description by all producers and broadcasters so that those requiring description would know what to expect when they tuned in. As recognition of the artistic and scientific techniques of the practice continues to evolve, we've begun to see the achievement of that goal.

With a mandate to continue to examine other forms of description, the work of the Described Video
Best Practices Committee, comprised of broadcasters, private business and community groups, adjusted
its focus to that of live description in early 2014.

Published in: Technology
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Best Practices for the Audio Description of Live Events

  1. 1. Best Practices for the Audio Description of Live Events Accessible Media Inc. (AMI) Robert Pearson March 4th, 2015 9:00am PT 30th CSUN Conference San Diego
  2. 2. Accessible Media Inc. (AMI) Make accessible media for all Canadians • Overview
  3. 3. Accessible Media Inc. (AMI) • A not-for-profit • Three broadcast channels, website • Mandated as must-carry services for all providers • 20+ years of making media accessible
  4. 4. Accessible Media Inc. (AMI) • AMI-audio; magazines, books, local and original programs • AMI-tv; open described, closed captioned TV • AMI.ca http://www.ami.ca/ • AMI-télé http://www.amitele.ca/ • DV Guide http://www.ami.ca/dvguide/ • Scholarship, Research Panel, DV Best Practices
  5. 5. Financial Model • Per subscriber – AMI-audio: $0.04 – AMI-tv: $0.20 – AMI-télé: $0.28 • AMI-télé paid in Francophone markets, but distributed nationally • Not-for-profit, everything invested back • Largest costs are for acquiring and describing Canadian broadcast content
  6. 6. In Canada, it’s Described Video • Described video (DV) is a narrated description of a program's main visual elements, such as settings, costumes, or body language • Works best for pre-recorded programs, such as dramas and documentaries • Described video uses a separate audio track
  7. 7. Description Roadmap Timeline • April 2011 to June 2012 – Described Video Working Group • June 2012 to June 2013 – Post-Production Described Video Best Practices • January 2014 to June 2014 – Live Described Video Best Practices • 2015: Embedded, Multi-lingual, Digital
  8. 8. Post-Production DV Examples AMI YouTube Channel • DV PSA Rainforest • DV PSA Hospital • AMI Old House • AMI Diner • Murdoch Mysteries
  9. 9. Industry adopted Described Video Best Practices + Internally developed guidelines based upon the unique experiences of each producer = Consistent and good quality DV in Canada Post-Production DV Best Practices
  10. 10. Post-Production DV Best Practices Artistic Guidelines 1. Individual/Physical Characteristics 2. Scene Transitions 3. Visual Effects 4. Non-verbal Sounds/Communications 5. Titles, Subtitles , Credits, Text on Screen, Signing 6. Style and Tone Technical Guidelines 1. Channels 2. Loudness & peak levels 3. Soundtrack vs. DV mix levels 4. Equalization 5. Sync 6. Recording quality 7. Output parameters
  11. 11. Live Event Description Background • Less than a thousand hours of live description ever broadcast by all networks in Canada • New frontier in terms of the development of best practices. • MLB, Paralympic Games, Royal Wedding, a reality show and an election.
  12. 12. Live Event Description Requirements • Knowledge, background and experience • Recruitment, research and rehearsal are necessary to ensure that a live describer can speak in context with a program as it is being delivered.
  13. 13. Characteristics: Live DV event Definition • A process of listening, watching and narrating while determining where the description is added as the event takes place. • A described performance that is done live has no opportunity for revision. • A performance is live if the turnaround to going to air is less than a day and they will either be considered live-to-tape or live-to-air.
  14. 14. Live DV Best Practices Logistical 1. Research 2. Physical Location 3. Producer, Describer Relationship 4. Characteristics of a Live Event 5. Handling the Unexpected • Royal Wedding • Blue Jays Baseball
  15. 15. Live DV Best Practices Technical and Artistic Guidelines • Role of the Describer 1. Primary descriptions – Descriptions that are crucial to the understanding of a story. 2. Secondary descriptions – Descriptions that are defined as being important but not essential to the understanding of a story. 3. Tertiary descriptions – Stylistic descriptions that are encouraged when time allows.
  16. 16. Best Practices Downloads • Go to AMI.ca, select Media Accessibility • Post-Production v. 2 and Live v. 1 • Next versions: to be published by May 2015 • http://www.ami.ca/media- accessibility/Pages/Described-Video-Best- Practices.aspx
  17. 17. AMI-player • Launched October 30th, 2014 • Providing an Accessible Broadcast Experience (ABE) • Structurally accessible with accessible content • AMI Original Programming
  18. 18. Described Video TV Guide
  19. 19. Contact • Robert.Pearson@ami.ca • http://www.ami.ca • Twitter: @a11ymedia • Facebook: Accessible Media Inc. • YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/accessiblemedia/

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