Captioning / Relay - Archive

Stephanie Ulmer named VA Captioned Telephone Outreach Coordinator

March 19, 2015 in Captioning / Relay, Community News, Technology

 

Stephanie Ulmer Joins Hamilton Relay and VDDHH as Virginia Relay Captioned Telephone Outreach Coordinator

RICHMOND, VA. – The Virginia Department for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (VDDHH) and Hamilton Relay, Virginia’s captioned telephone (CapTel®) service provider, recently announced that Stephanie Ulmer has been hired as Virginia Relay Captioned Telephone Outreach Coordinator. In her new position, Stephanie will provide outreach support and education services for the entire Commonwealth of Virginia to raise awareness of the CapTel services available through Virginia Relay. Virginia Relay is a free public service that enables people who are deaf, hard of hearing, deaf-blind or who have difficulty speaking to place and receive telephone calls.

Ulmer is highly experienced in business and customer service within the health care field. Previously, she worked for the District 19 Community Services Board as administrative associate in Child and Adolescent Services. She currently resides in Prince George, Va.

“I am looking forward to shifting my focus to marketing,” says Ulmer. “I am excited to have the opportunity to travel and meet people throughout Virginia and educate them about the life-changing benefits CapTel provides for individuals who have difficulty hearing over the phone.”

CapTel is designed specifically for people who have difficulty hearing over the telephone. Using a CapTel phone, users speak directly to the other person and are able to listen while reading word-for-word captions of what’s said to them during phone conversations. Behind the scenes, captions are generated by a specially-trained Captioning Assistant using state-of-the-art voice recognition software. Captions appear on the CapTel phone’s display screen nearly simultaneously to the spoken word, adding clarity and confidence in using the phone to communicate with friends, family and businesses.

Virginia residents are eligible to purchase CapTel phones at a special reduced rate of $75 through Virginia Relay. CapTel phones are also available at no cost to people who qualify medically and financially through Virginia’s Technology Assistance Program (TAP). For more information, please visit www.varelay.org or contact Stephanie Ulmer at stephanie.ulmer@hamiltonrelay.com.

About Virginia Relay

Virginia Relay and the Virginia Department for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (VDDHH) provide the most up-to-date technologies and assistive devices to enable people who are deaf, hard of hearing, deaf-blind and speech-impaired to communicate via a standard telephone network. Virginia Relay services are easily accessible to anyone by dialing 7-1-1. For more information on Virginia Relay and its services, please visit www.varelay.org, or call VDDHH at 804-662-9502 v/t.

About Hamilton Relay

Hamilton Relay provides contracted Traditional Relay and/or Captioned Telephone services to 17 states, the District of Columbia and the Island of Saipan, and is a provider of Internet-based Captioned Telephone services nationwide. More information is available at www.hamiltonrelay.com.

 

 

NAD and VUDU Reach Agreement to Caption 100% Content

February 10, 2015 in Captioning / Relay, Community News

 

 

The National Association of the Deaf (NAD), a non-profit civil rights organization of, by, and for deaf and hard of hearing individuals, and VUDU, Inc., a wholly owned streaming entertainment subsidiary of Walmart, have reached an agreement for VUDU to caption 100% of programming content streamed through VUDU’s Video on Demand Service.

The agreement indicates the parties’ mutual intent to increase access for people who are deaf and hard of hearing to movies and television streamed on the Internet. VUDU has ensured that as of January 16, 2015, every title listed in its catalog is closed-captioned or subtitled. In addition, VUDU has committed to captioning all newly-acquired content as soon as that content is made available to the public.

Howard A. Rosenblum, CEO of NAD, said, “Online streaming entertainment has become one of the most popular methods of viewing movies and television shows. The National Association of the Deaf is thrilled to announce that 48 million deaf and hard of hearing people will be able to fully access VUDU’s Video on Demand services.”

“We are grateful for NAD’s guidance and are excited to be offering VUDU’s entire library of HD movies and TV to customers who are deaf and hard of hearing,” said Jeremy Verba, General Manager, VUDU.

“Streaming entertainment is reshaping how people watch television and movies. VUDU has ensured that its deaf and hard of hearing customers have that same access to this new entertainment delivery system,” said Arlene Mayerson, Disability Rights Education & Defense Fund’s Directing Attorney. “DREDF urges other streaming entertainment providers to incorporate access to deaf and hard of hearing individuals at the outset rather than as an afterthought. It’s a sound business practice that’s also the right thing to do.”

“By ensuring 100% closed captions on all of its streaming titles, VUDU has demonstrated that it is an industry leader, setting the standards for an open Internet,” said Bill Lann Lee, an attorney at Lewis, Feinberg, Lee, Renaker & Jackson, P.C.

The Settlement Agreement (PDF) between NAD and VUDU is available here.

 

 

Open Captioning Screening this Week at AFI Silver Theatre

January 29, 2015 in Captioning / Relay, Community News

AFI Silver Theatre provides open captioning for select films:

Sunday, February 1
  • THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING 11:00 a.m. (OC)
  • BIRDMAN 7:05 (OC)
Monday, February 2:
  • THE IMITATION GAME 6:55 (OC)
Wednesday, February 4:
  • INHERENT VICE 8:15 (OC)

Check AFI.com/Silver for upcoming Open Caption Screenings!

AFI Silver Theatre is located at 8633 Colesville Rd., near the intersection of Colesville Rd. and Georgia Ave.  For daily listings call 301-495-6700

(!)  Pass Restricted

Mary Dalto

 
Theater Manager | AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center | American Film Institute 
8633 Colesville Road, Silver Spring, MD 20910 | P: 301.495.6720 | F: 301.495.6777 | theatermanagers@AFI.com

AFI Silver Theatre – OPEN CAPTION screenings this Sunday (1/25)

January 22, 2015 in Captioning / Relay, Community Events, Community News

 

 

AFI Silver Theatre is happy to provide open captioning for select films this Sunday, Jan. 25th: 

THE THEORY OF EVERYTHING (OC) at 11:00 a.m. – 5 Oscar Noms!

BIRDMAN (OC) at 7:05 – 9 Oscar Noms!

THE IMITATION GAME (OC) at 9:50 – 8 Oscar Noms!

Check AFI.com/Silver for future Open Caption Screenings.

AFI Silver Theatre is located at 8633 Colesville Rd., near the intersection of Colesville Rd. and Georgia Ave.  For daily listings call 301-495-6700

(!)  Pass Restricted 

 
Mary Dalto

 
Theater Manager | AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center | American Film Institute 
8633 Colesville Road, Silver Spring, MD 20910 | P: 301.495.6720 | F: 301.495.6777 | theatermanagers@AFI.com

With Captions – YouTube video

January 8, 2015 in Captioning / Relay, Community News

 

 

Published on Dec 29, 2014

Youtube videos are not accessible to everyone, adding closed captions to videos will make them accessible to millions of more people. Share this video on social media, tag your favorite creator and help make your favorite videos enjoyable for everyone! #withcaptions

Portland Captioning Proposal Receives Enthusiastic PCOD Support

December 17, 2014 in Captioning / Relay, Technology

 

 

PORTLAND, OR December 16, 2014, Spokespersons for Portland: Turn on the Captions Now! (PTCN) David Viers and Jim House co-presented about PTCN’s efforts to require all television sets in public places within the city to the Portland Commission on Disability (PCOD) at its regular meeting on Friday, December 12, 2014. The presentation was followed by a few questions, and concluded with a resounding vote of support by the Commission.

In the presentation, David and Jim reviewed the advantages of captioning, and the lack thereof on many television sets in public places like restaurants, bars, gyms, waiting rooms, libraries and other places where people watch television outside the homes. However, many public places have become proactive in turning on the captions, simply because of the noisy environment and the fact that customers need a way to know what is being said during newscasts, sports games, and emergency announcements.

There are similar laws in San Francisco and the State of Maryland. Portland has the opportunity to take the lead and become a Model City for Individuals with Disabilities according to Portland City Council member Amanda Fritz, who is introducing the ordinance for consideration by the Portland City Council. The San Francisco ordinance required captioning at all times, but limited the scope of coverage to government facilities and sponsored events such as outdoor movies in a park. The Maryland law expanded the scope of coverage to include private businesses, but the requirement is effective only when a customer or patron makes a request, which is often unfruitful because of so-called technical difficulties or staff inexperience. The City of Portland can expand on the merits of both prior legislations while crafting its ordinance. The primary goal of enforcement would be to educate businesses of their obligations and to empower consumers by making them aware of their rights to access information on television.

After the presentation, there were some questions regarding Spanish captioning and theatrical movie captioning. At the end, the PCOD voted unanimously to support the concepts and looks forward to helping PCTN move the captioning proposal forward.

 

“With the passage of this ordinance, Portland will show everyone – both citizens and visitors — that this is a city that is welcoming to everyone, regardless of abilities or disabilities,” exclaimed Carol Studemund, who helped initiate this grassroot effort.  Carol is the founder and president of LNS Captioning, serves on the captioning committee of National Court Reporters Association, is chair of the Mt. Hood Cable Regulatory Commission, and also with Portland Community Media.

 

“With the help of PCTN, Portland has this opportunity to take the lead and blaze new trails in accessibility where everyone has full and equal access to vital information on televisions anywhere and everywhere,” proclaimed Jim House, a technology accessibility specialist who spearheaded this effort with Ms. Studenmund.  A native of Portland, Jim also serves on the accessibility committee of National Emergency Numbering Association and recently relocated here after spending more than 15 years with Telecommunications for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, Inc. in Washington, D.C. promoting accessible technologies for people with hearing disabilities at the Federal Communications Commission and other consumer, government, and industry forums.

 

“This proposed ordinance to turn on the captions on televisions in every public place will enhance the quality of life for both non-hearing and hearing people in the City of Roses,” said David Viers, an advocate for people who are hard of hearing who lends a hand promoting this effort .  Viers is a semi-retired nonprofit administrator with experience in two centers for people who are deaf and hard of hearing.

 

Grateful appreciation is due to the following consumer organizations for their support:

  • Oregon Association of the Deaf
  • Hearing Loss Association of America – Oregon State Association (HLAA-OR)
  • Oregon Communications Access Project (OR-CAP), a local grassroot advocacy group that is credited with implementing captioning at the Oregon Shakespearean Festival, University of Oregon, Oregon State University, Portland Trail Blazers, and other venues.

 

To support our efforts and be informed with updates of future developments, go to:

 

Jim House

 

NAD Shares Insight Behind Closed and Open Captions

December 11, 2014 in Advocacy & Access, Captioning / Relay, Community News

 

NAD Website
12/09/2014

The National Association of the Deaf (NAD) takes a moment to explain the purpose of the Joint Recommendation and the Comment that was filed with the Department of Justice (DOJ) on December 1, 2014. Both filings were very important for the deaf and hard of hearing community. With such action, we know that there’s work left to be done — with your support, we can continue the fight for equality for access in Movie Theaters!

WATCH ASL VIDEO

Demand for court and stenography reporters rising in California, nation

December 9, 2014 in Captioning / Relay, Employment, Technology

 

The Bakersfield Californian
Friday, Dec 05 2014 05:29 PM

By RUTH BROWN The Bakersfield Californian rbrown@bakersfield.com

Typing quietly while catching every spoken word, court reporters are often overlooked but critical components of the judicial system.

And the demand for them is growing while the number available capable of typing the required 200-word-per-minute threshold for courtroom work is dwindling.

Read More . . .

Hearing-impaired patron sues Hippodrome Theatre

December 4, 2014 in Advocacy & Access, Captioning / Relay, Disability Law

 

 

The Baltimore Sun
By Mary Carole McCauley,

A Baltimore woman filed suit Monday in federal court asking a judge to order the France Merrick Performing Arts Center to provide open-captioned performances for its hearing-impaired patrons.

Jessica Gill is a lifelong lover of musical theater with a severe hearing disability who became frustrated and angry after her efforts to see the musical “Newsies” at the theater were stymied. The show opens Tuesday night and runs through Sunday.

She filed suit against the Key Brand Theatrical Group, which has a contract to operate the historic theater, the nonprofit Hippodrome Foundation and the Maryland Stadium Authority, which undertook a $62 million renovation of the former vaudeville palace in 2004.

The suit alleges that by refusing to provide the closed captioning that provides a running transcription of the dialogue and lyrics — similar to supertitles in opera — the venue violates the Americans with Disabilities Act.

According to the suit, Gill communicated back and forth with the Hippodrome’s staff from last January through July attempting to find a way to attend the show and follow the action on stage. She was told that the theater provides its hearing-impaired patrons with infrared hearing devices, audio descriptions and sign interpreters, but has made no provisions for open captioning.

Read entire article  . . .

NATO issues ‘landmark’ access recommendations for hearing disabled to DOJ

November 25, 2014 in Advocacy & Access, Captioning / Relay, Community News

 

 

L.A. NIZ
Nov 24, 2014
Annlee Ellingson Staff Writer- L.A. Biz

More than 38 million Americans have a hearing disability, according to the Los Angeles Times. And while 70 percent of Americans go to the movies at least once per year, only one-third of the deaf and hearing-impaired do. That’s more than 14 million potential movie tickets that go unsold.

Such data makes for a strong case for movie theaters to install captioning equipment for hearing-disabled guests — as does avoiding costly lawsuits levied by advocacy groups. But such accommodations can be expensive — $3,000 to nearly $40,000 depending on the size of the theater, the Times estimates. So the National Association of Theatre Owners, along with four deaf and hard-of-hearing advocacy groups, is negotiating with the Department of Justice to make sure such an investment would be equitably distributed among its members.

For example, the joint recommendation agrees that all digital screens should be installed with closed-captioning (CC) and audio-description (AD) technologies. However, the DOJ has proposed a fixed formula for the number of CC display units based on the number of seats in a theater complex, regardless of the venue’s actual attendance or the number of deaf and hard-of-hearing people in the vicinity. The NATO document instead recommends establishing a minimum device requirement — 12 units for a theater with 16 or more screens — and then monitoring demand every six months, requiring display units at a rate of 150 percent of average weekend consumer demand.

Read entire Article  . . .

 

REAL-TIME TRANSLATION SERVICE NOW AVAILABLE VIA iPAD at St. Theresa Catholic Church in Ashburn, VA

November 25, 2014 in Captioning / Relay, Community News

 

 

St. Theresa Catholic Church in Ashburn, VA:  HOMILY REAL-TIME TRANSLATION SERVICE NOW AVAILABLE VIA iPAD – Are you not hearing the Sunday mass homily as well as you’d like?  Especially for the hearing impaired and deaf but open to all, you now have an amazing option to receive the Sunday mass homily, prayers of the faithful, and announcements via real-time translation (CART service) directly to your iPAD during mass!  St. Theresa parishioner and professional court reporter Donna L. Linton has volunteered to provide the service (just like closed captioning on your television).  Please contact Donna at CARTsttheresa@aol.com for information on mass times and how to join in.

AGB, ALDA, HLAA, NAD & NATO – Joint Recommendations to the Department of Justice

November 21, 2014 in Captioning / Relay, Community News, Technology

 

 

Alexander Graham Bell Association
Association of Late-Deafened Adults
Hearing Loss Association of America
National Association of the Deaf
National Association of Theatre Owners

Joint Recommendations to the Department of Justice RIN 1190-AA63, CRT Docket No. 126

Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability by Public Accommodations – Movie Theatres: Movie Captioning and Audio Description

READ DOCUMENT  – Joint Recommendations to the Department of Justice

Read Press Release 11/21/14 – DOWNLOAD – Joint Press Release (PDF)

View the live press conference Archive from Friday 11/21 from 10-11 AM EST

Join ALDA at the Movie Captioning Webcast-Friday 11/21/14-10-11AM EST

November 20, 2014 in Captioning / Relay, Community News, Technology

 

Deaf and Hard of Hearing Advocacy Groups and Movie Theater Owners
Joint Press Conference on Movie Captioning

National Press Club, Washington D.C.

November 21, 2014
10:00 – 11:00am ET

– WATCH Webcast –
View the live press conference Archive from Friday 11/21 from 10-11 AM EST

Read Press Conference Announcement

(Washington, D.C. – 21 November 2014) The Alexander Graham Bell Association (AG Bell), the Association of Late Deafened Adults (ALDA), the Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA), the National Association of the Deaf (NAD), and the National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO) today announced an agreement to file joint recommendations with the Department of Justice regarding its Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on captioning equipment in U.S. movie theaters.

DEAF AND HARD OF HEARING ADVOCACY GROUPS AND THEATER OWNERS ASSOCIATION ANNOUNCE AGREEMENT TO MAKE JOINT RECOMMENDATIONS TO DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE ON ADA RULE FOR MOVIE THEATERS 

Commitments To Voluntary Actions To Improve Access Also Outlined

(Washington, D.C. – 21 November 2014) The Alexander Graham Bell Association (AG Bell), the Association of Late Deafened Adults (ALDA), the Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA), the National Association of the Deaf (NAD), and the National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO) today announced an agreement to file joint recommendations with the Department of Justice regarding its Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on captioning equipment in U.S. movie theaters.

After several weeks of discussions, the five organizations agreed on a set of recommendations (attached) to the DOJ to improve access to movies for deaf and hard of hearing patrons.

Read entire Press Release – DOWNLOAD – Joint Press Release (PDF)

 

 

Did you know there’s more than one way to use Captioned Telephone?

November 20, 2014 in Captioning / Relay, Community News, Technology

 

 

How Do You Use CapTel?

The CapTel, or captioned telephone, has been a great way for Deaf, Hard of Hearing, and Late-Deafened folks who prefer to speak on the phone to keep in touch with their friends and family.  Whether at home or at work, keeping in touch is important.

But did you know there’s more than one way to use CapTel?

Many people are familiar with the CapTel phone, which can be used at home or in the office.  But you can also get captioned telephone calls from any place where you have a telephone and a computer with WebCapTel:  https://www.hamiltonwebcaptel.com/

Just create a free account with WebCapTel, get your Call Me #, and you’re ready to go!

Use a computer to log into the WebCapTel website, type in your telephone number (your cell phone or landline, etc.), then type in the number of the person you want to call.  The WebCapTel service calls you on the number you provided, connects you to the person you are calling, and the computer screen gives you the captions of the call.

You can also download the CapTel Mobile app to your 4G smartphone or tablet to get captioned calls on the go!  Just log into the app to get captioned calls anywhere you have 4G service.

http://www.hamiltoncaptel.com/smartphone/what_is_app.html

If  you live in the Northern Virginia Area and you’d like a demonstration of CapTel, WebCapTel, or CapTel Mobile, please contact Debbie Jones at djones@nvrc.org to set up an appointment.

 

 

 

FCC Establishes Quality Standards for TV Closed Captioning

November 18, 2014 in Captioning / Relay, Community News, Technology

 

 

FCC ESTABLISHES QUALITY STANDARDS FOR TELEVISION CLOSED CAPTIONING, SEEKS COMMENT ON FURTHER RULE CHANGES

The FCC recently adopted new rules regarding closed captioning quality for television programming. The new rules establish four “non-quantitative” quality standards for closed captioning, requiring captions to be (1) accurate, (2) synchronous, (3) complete, and (4) properly placed. Rules requiring compliance with these standards will take effect on January 15, 2015. The FCC also adopted new rules addressing a number of related issues, including new requirements for broadcast stations using Electronic Newsroom Technique (“ENT”). The new ENT requirements, which require broadcasters to comply with a prescribed set of ENT Best Practices, will take effect on June 30, 2014. New monitoring requirements for equipment used to provide closed captioning will take effect on April 30, 2014, and a related set of recordkeeping requirements will take effect on January 15, 2015.

See the entire Report & Order here:

http://hraunfoss.fcc.gov/edocs_public/attachmatch/FCC-14 -12A1.doc