December 2013 Technology and Disability Policy Highlights

Date of Publication: 
2013 December

In December, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) revisited rules regarding the closed captioning of IP-delivered video programming by issuing a Public Notice seeking comment on the issue.  The notice coincides with a letter written by Senators Mark Pryor (D-Ark) and Edward J. Markey (D-Mass) expressing their support in reconsideration of the matter. In the previously issued IP Closed Captioning Order, which was pursuant to the Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act of 2010 (CVAA), the FCC ruled that closed captioning rules “should initially apply to full-length programming and not to video clips,” and gave the intention of revisiting the ruling’s application to video clips in the future.  The FCC noted February 18, 2014 as the final deadline for comments on the Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking regarding rules previously adopted to implement Sections 204 and 205 of the CVAA, enabling people with visual or auditory disabilities to easily access accessibility features for video programming. This month also marked an official partnership between the FCC and the National Institute on Aging (NIA), which would allow the two agencies to “partner on research into the use of modern IP technology to improve and make more accessible phone service to Americans who are deaf, deaf-blind or hard of hearing.”



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