With 85% of US viewers watching online video weekly, it’s no surprise that many organizations, businesses and institutions are racing to invest in video. Creating videos that are both engaging and accessible has become a top priority for many. It’s also necessary to ensure equity among viewers.
It can take a great deal of time, planning and work to make videos and websites fully accessible with effective captioning, transcription and additional tools. Automatic Sync Technologies (AST) makes the process seamless for professionals, and is the leading platform being used to enhance videos for the following reasons.
To cut costs, some vendors rely on only speech recognition and crowd-sourcing to produce captions and transcripts for video. AST instead uses professionally trained transcribers to prepare transcripts and descriptions. They’re trained in-house to follow the Described and Captioned Media Program (DCMP) Captioning and Description Keys, which provide guidance for how to correctly note sound effects, music, dialog and descriptions of visual components.
Users also benefit from access to transcribers and describers with specific subject matter expertise that may be pertinent to them. For example, users can request that legal content is transcribed by a team of legal transcribers, or that business video is transcribed by a financial services transcription team.
Captions that aren’t accurate don’t offer equity, with results that have more than 3% word errors leading to low comprehension rates. AST recognizes the importance of accuracy and focuses on delivering high-quality captioning results. The combination of effective automation technology and professionally trained transcribers allows AST to deliver 99%+ accuracy rates, ensuring captions are accessible to those who need them.
Cost shouldn’t prevent organizations from offering video accessibility. While captioning in-house seems cost-effective at first, it takes about 5-10 times the length of a video to caption it. Using a high-quality captioning service will also ensure effective communication, without sacrificing time and money that’s usually spent fixing poor caption results.
It’s a core part of AST’s mission to make captioning affordable, cutting down on the time spent creating captions manually. AST’s initial funding by the US Department of Education was specifically designed to create an affordable captioning solution by providing customers with some of the lowest prices in the captioning industry available.
Making video accessible isn’t just a matter of adding closed captioning. For example, is the video player used accessible to assistive technology users? Can blind and low vision audiences consume the videos? AST builds accessibility into all of its processes, from its caption results to an accessible website and user interface. These accessibility-driven services ensure that organizations can fully meet important guidelines like the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.
AST’s expert team of professional transcribers, describers and captioners, along with engineering, operations and support staff, have the knowledge needed to help customers succeed. AST’s team has deep expertise in video accessibility practices, providing users with full support and customized solutions for user accounts, workflows and integrations to deliver on accessibility effectively.
Ensuring that video is compliant is important for organizations that are required to meet accessibility laws and regulations. To ensure equal access for individuals with disabilities, AST works to ensure that solutions are compliant with legislation like the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 508 guidelines.
All of AST’s services, user interface and results are designed to be compliant with these standards. To provide customers with added assurance, Voluntary Product Accessibility Templates (VPATs) are provided, giving stakeholders the opportunity to ensure accessibility for users with disabilities.
Accessibility efforts shouldn’t be difficult. AST provides integrations with a wide variety of video platforms, such as YouTube, Google Drive and Kaltura. These integrations allow users to request captions from within their video platforms easily.
Innovative tools such as the CaptionSync Smart Player, which is fully accessible and WCAG 2-compliant, are also available, allowing users to make use of captions and descriptions through automatic methods that ease the process for all stakeholders involved. Many additional tools are provided, including caption appearance settings and AST-Link, an application that allows users to upload large numbers of files to CaptionSync quickly.
The CaptionSync support channel allows users to access over 400 tutorials and engage with support staff to get answers quickly. Search functionality is provided throughout the support channel to help users locate the information they need and speak with professionals to solve any issues immediately. AST takes pride in providing a dedicated support team for customers, boasting an average response time of less than two hours.
AST has been providing video accessibility services for over 18 years, working with thousands of leading organizations in government, education, publishing and other enterprises since its inception to meet and exceed their goals. AST works with
several top-tier organizations in multiple industry verticals, including the California State University (CSU) System, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Cengage Learning, all of whom have been AST customers for over 10 years.
AST offers one of the most complete suites of video accessibility services available in the captioning industry today. Solutions include post-production captioning, live captioning, audio description, video encoding and more, offering users everything they need to guarantee a more accessible website and experience all from one platform.
AST is helping professionals and accessibility stakeholders consistently deliver on their video needs and goals, ensuring accuracy and cost-effective solutions for captioning, transcription and audio description media. Reach out to learn more about our innovative video accessibility services and tools.