“Accessibility” is what today is all about. Our reading mostly focuses on the impact a lack of considering a disabled audience, in whatever capacity they may be disabled, limits their accessibility to the material, thus, of course, limiting your audience. They inform you on the challenges disabled individuals have in approaching multimedia, particularly when technology is involved, alerting us, as writers and creators as the multimedia, to be more aware of how we create our media and the steps we take to create a comprehensive experience that takes into consideration the tools or resources these individuals might use.
This push is characteristic of the current age, as people are becoming more and more aware of the variety of people present in their audiences. The internet gives one a nearly limitless capacity for audience in size and it makes sense to be more aware and considerate of others.
While steps and strides are being made, it’s sometimes entertaining to witness how inept some of the technology employed by certain outlets to address these issues is. One of the readings talks about how YouTube’s automatic captioning system is accurate ~most of the time~, which is a complete joke. But keeping with YouTube as an example, they’re not completely unaware of the dangers of ignoring their hearing impaired audience.
This online article brings awareness to one of the steps YouTube has taken to provide a more comprehensive experience for those with hearing issues. Pushed by the “Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act of 2010,” which makes it so video sites that display video content that “has previously aired on TV” provide captions for them, YouTube goes out of their way to allow users to submit a special form that brings notice to videos that meet this criteria that aren’t doing what their supposed to do. YouTube then alerts the publisher about the lack of captions, possibly making them take action.
It’s a nice gesture. Certainly better than having to rely wholesale their player-based auto captioning system at least. It definitely shows a willingness to consider these people.
In a greater sense, though, accessibility is more than just working with the disabled. In the grand scope, taking steps to ensure your content is approachable, considerate (in form) for others, and displays some internal logic will only strengthen the production of multimedia.
And that’s really all I have to say on all of this!