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Hello there and welcome to "Implementing Accessible Workplace Tech: Videos and Accessibility." This is a webinar by the Partnership on Employment and Accessible Technology. My name is Josh Christianson and I'm the project director for PEAT. I'll be introducing today's talk and moderating the question-and-answer later after the presentation.
Before we get started, I'm going to quickly review a few logistics. You can see on the slide there we have some information up. And, just as a reminder, we will definitely have time for Q&A. And I want to encourage participants to use the chat window there to insert any questions you have, and we will answer those at end of the session. I'll moderate that with Gian.
And you can also use the chat window if you're having any technical difficulties or you have questions, pertinent, relevant resources to share, we encourage you to chime in there and we will do our best as a team to respond to those and resolve any issues you have. You can download today's presentation if you're having any issues with the player. That's at our website, peatworks.org, P-E-A-T-W-O-R-K-S.O-R-G. And as with all of our webinars, an archived recording will be posted online following today's event.
Additionally, for any social media folks, we will be live tweeting today's event from our account @PEATworks. And feel free to join in there, chime in, follow along. You can see it all using the hashtag #PEATworks, P-E-A-T-W-O-R-K-S. Okay.
So, let's talk about the topic at hand today. Videos are super valuable, a super valuable form of media for any company or organization. They are increasingly used both internally for a company and externally on websites, and, as such, are a great place to begin when implementing accessible technology practices. There are many different video players used on websites, not all are equal in the eyes of accessibility. Consider even just accurate closed captioning on their videos for one example. But today we will talk about what makes a video player accessible, share best practices and some examples with you. Thanks for being here and please do chime in with questions as we go along in the chat box.
We are joined today by our resident expert, Gian Wild, the CEO of AccessibilityOz, way across the globe in Australia where it is some super early hour in the morning. She has worked in the accessibility industry since '98. Gian spent six years contributing to the W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines version 2.0, WCAG 2.0, and has spoken at the United Nations Conference of State Parties on the importance of web accessibility. She has given countless number of well-received webinars and talks on a variety of accessibility issues, and we are pleased to have her here as part of the team. So, without further ado, I will turn it over to you Gian. Thanks for joining us today. Are you there, Gian? You might have to unmute. I hear something.
Sorry about that. Technical difficulties.
No problem. Welcome.
Thanks, Josh. Can everyone hear me? Thank you. Yes, so, thank you very much, Josh, for that introduction. And it is — well, it is six A.M. in the morning, so, you know, you might end up hearing some birds singing and things like that, or my dogs barking, because I'm actually doing the webinar from my house. So, I do apologize for that. Probably the biggest deal is yesterday was Australia Day, so we all had a public holiday. So, there was a whole lot of partying and we had what we call Triple J Hottest 100, one of — some of you might know it, where we count down the most popular songs by Australians.
And I can see that the captioner has a lot of difficulty with my accent. I do have a strong Australian accent. I'll try and slow it down. In fact, I remember running a presentation for Michigan State University, and someone coming up to me afterwards and saying, "I just loved your presentation. I didn't listen to a word you said, but I love your accent." So, perhaps, you know, that's not the best feedback for me. But I hope you enjoy today's presentation. And thank you very much for being here and thank you very much, PEAT Works, for, you know, having this presentation. And we've got a couple of videos at the end, which we're going to send you off with. And I'm really happy to talk about any questions that you have.
Video accessibility can seem like a really scary subject, but it's really straightforward. It can be a little time-consuming at times, but it is straightforward to make this stuff accessible. So, I hope you leave this presentation feeling, you know, like you really have a handle on what it is that makes videos accessible. So, I'm going to move the slides. So, talking about videos, by 2020, which is only three years away, 80 percent of Internet traffic will be streaming video content. And that's going to be a big deal for third-world countries and things like that, because they don't have really fast Internet. Unfortunately, it's probably going to be a problem for Australia as well because we don't have [inaudible] anyone.
78 percent of people watch a video or more every week. 85 percent of people watch video every single day. And if you have — if you're putting content out to social media, and it consists of video, it actually generates 12 times more shares than social media images and text. And we'll talk a bit about social media and videos because accessibility is really important there. And it really increases, you know, the number of people that access your content. 64 percent of users are more likely to buy a product online after watching a video. And after watching the video, 65 percent of executives visit the marketer's website, and 39 percent actually call a video — call a vendor. As I said, it's six o'clock in the morning.
So, how do people with disabilities watch videos? Captions are for people who are hearing impaired, and they're text that you see at the bottom of the screen. And I apologize if this is all a bit basic for you guys, but we have to start at the start. So, captions, there's two types of captions, closed captions and open captions. Open captions are where the captions are burnt in to the video and you can't turn them off. Closed captions are where you can turn them on and off as you require.
So, captions are a direct — a text version of the speech and the sound in the video. And they're different to subtitles, which are actually just a direct translation of speech from one language to another. So, captions are what you have for people who have hearing disabilities, whereas subtitles are for people who have English as a second language or are watching a video in a different language.
Audio descriptions, they're sometimes called video descriptions, are for people who are vision-impaired and can't see the screen. And what happens is they — it actually describes the content that you see on the screen. So, that way you actually — people who are vision-impaired can follow along. Now, there's two types of audio descriptions, there's standard audio descriptions and extended audio descriptions.
So, standard audio descriptions occur only during the natural pauses of the video. So, if you've got a three-minute video, then audio described video is also going to be three minutes long. If it was an extended audio description, you actually have to pause the video at certain times to allow the "descriptioner" to describe what's going on. So, a three-minute video might end up being five or six minutes. So, it's something that varies, maybe one or two video players in the world that actually support audio descriptions. And I think only one of them supports extended audio descriptions.
Now, text transcripts are basically your captions added to your audio descriptions. So, a description of the speech and the sound are added to a description of what's happening on screen, and it's in text. And it's basically for everyone, especially people that might have trouble accessing the video or they don't want to watch it because they're in a loud place or they don't have good bandwidth or something like that, or they just want to grab the specific information. So, I know you've all had the experience where there's an hour video and you just want that five minutes where it talks about the, you know, the thing that's of interest to you. The other thing about text transcript is they're for Google as well. Google can't actually search video, but it can search text transcripts. So, it's a really good way of increasing your Google stats.
So, video accessibility really improves absolutely everything. So, it really can increase the use of your video and how popular it is. So, a page that has a video with a transcript versus a page with a video without a transcript has 16 percent more revenue. So, that's quite a lot. When you think about search engine optimization, you can usually get a two- or three-percent increase, and 16 percent is huge. Google can search captions and transcripts, but it can't search the video. And the interesting thing that the BBC found was that 80 percent of people who use captions are not deaf or hard of hearing. They're actually people who decide to turn captions because of, you know, their own requirements.
So, I know, for example, that if a video that's posted on Facebook doesn't have captions, then I won't watch it because I'm usually looking at Facebook while I'm in the taxi or waiting for an airplane, or, you know, between the ads in a TV show. And, you know, if there's no captions, I'm not going to turn the audio on, and so, you know, I won't look at that video. So that's a huge percentage of people that use captions that actually don't need them for accessibility. Completion of a video actually doubles when the video has captions, and that's, you know, borne out by, you know, how the public use them as well.
So, let's talk about web accessibility requirements for video. There is an act called the 21st Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act, and it requires that all television broadcasts be captioned. However, it only requires that 50 hours per quarter of television requires video descriptions or audio descriptions for each of the top four broadcasters. So, it's not really equal, the accessibility that's provided to the deaf versus people with vision impairments.
And it's actually quite interesting because there's been a lot of litigation, especially by the National Federation for the Blind, around web accessibility. But the other big area of litigation in web accessibility is by the National Association for the Deaf. So, the National Federation for the Blind very much talks about the accessibility of websites, whereas the National Association of the Deaf talks about the inaccessibility of videos. And then, of course, the important thing is that if that captioned television broadcast to the web, it must actually be captioned there as well.
So, the other thing to think about when it comes to the web is, of course, the W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines. And so there are three levels for WCAG, which is the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines. And we use version two, so we call it WCAG 2. There are three levels, A, AA, and AAA. And A is the minimum level. Captions are required for prerecorded media. So, any videos that are on your site that's not streaming, they require captions. At AA, you are required to provide audio descriptions. However, if we move down a level, if you don't have audio descriptions, you must have a transcript at level A. But if you're meeting level A, you can meet level A by providing captions and a transcript. But if you're meeting AA, you have to provide captions and an audio description. And at AA, you also need to provide captions for streaming content. I would say that you should always provide a transcript as well. Transcripts are incredibly useful for a number of reasons, and they're not particularly hard to do once you've got your captions and your audio descriptions because you just add them together.
Let's talk about the lawsuits regarding video accessibility. The first one was the National Association of the Deaf versus Netflix. They brought a class action lawsuit regarding the lack of closed captioning. Now, Netflix argued in court that they couldn't provide captions for the videos because that would actually be breaching copyright requirements. And the judge decided that that was a bit of ridiculous defense and ordered Netflix to pay $795,000 in penalties. And they were required to provide captions on all programs within two years, which they did. So, that's good.
Now, about six months after they achieved that, they released a TV series called "Daredevil," which is about a blind superhero. And it was presented without audio descriptions. And there was a bit of an uproar in the accessibility community that you would, you know, present a blind superhero without providing an accessible way for people who are vision-impaired or blind to access that content. And to their credit, they actually put audio descriptions up on the site — up on the TV series within two to three days. And their audio descriptions are absolutely excellent. So, we'll be adding a link at the end of this, and I strongly encourage you to actually go listen to those audio descriptions, because they are really, really good.
The next lawsuit that was of interest is the U.S. Equal Opportunity Commission versus FedEx. So, EEOC filed a lawsuit against FedEx for discriminating against deaf and hear of hearing applicants. And they have quite a lot of staff who, you know, unload boxes and things like that are deaf or hard of hearing. However, they didn't provide — FedEx didn't provide ASL or closed captions for any orientation videos, tour videos, staff meetings, safety seminars, and performance meetings. Now, the lawsuit is ongoing, and the National Association for the Deaf actually joined in 2015. So, that's going to be interesting, the result of that.
A couple years ago, the National Association for the Deaf brought a lawsuit against both Harvard and MIT arguing that not all videos were captioned, but also that some were captioned inaccurately, and they were captioned inaccurately because people were using the YouTube auto-caption feature. And I'll talk a little bit about how you can use that but you can't rely on that for providing your content. The U.S. Department of Justice actually got involved last year. Both Harvard and MIT requested the motion be dismissed and Department of Justice argued that it shouldn't be. And so the lawsuit is ongoing.
This one — this particular — well, it wasn't a lawsuit but it was a complaint, against the South Carolina Technical College System was really, really interesting. This happened a few years back. But it's the only lawsuit that actually references the inaccessibility of the video player as a problem when providing accessible content. So, the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Civil Rights, so, OCR, reviewed South Carolina Technical College System because they received a complaint. And they found "Additionally, some videos were without proper labeling, keyboard control, or captioning." And so that — even though it mentions captioning, proper labeling and keyboard control is all about accessibility of the video player.
So, how do you actually make your video content accessible? So, just because you have to have cat pictures — I don't have a cat video, but I have cat pictures. That's my cat taking a nap. There's basically seven steps to making your content accessible. So, no flickering accessible content, accessible player, no auto-play, captions, video descriptions or audio descriptions, and a transcript.
So, flickering content can actually trigger epileptic attacks and migraines in some people. And I actually get migraines, and I can get them triggered by flickering content. So, flickering content — excuse me — is something that you need to be aware of in terms of videos. And I've had migraines triggered three or four times by watching videos that have some kind of flickering content. So, the rules are that flashing images, especially those with red, should not flicker faster than three times per second. If the image doesn't have red, it still should not flicker faster than five times per second. And flashing images should not be displayed for a total duration of more than two seconds. And stripes, whirls, and concentric circles should not take up a large part of the screen.
So, there's this case of what is called Pokémon shock, where, in Japan, back in 1997, they had a Pokémon episode and it contained about six seconds of flashing content. And as a result, up to 700 people were actually hospitalized or taken to hospital because they had some form of epileptic attack. And some of the symptoms were things like vomiting, [indiscernible], dizziness, loss of eyesight, and one person actually had to stay in hospital for almost two weeks. So, you know, it can be a really big deal. It's something that you do need to worry about. When it comes to WCAG 2, meeting the flickering requirement or the no flickering requirement is what we call a critical requirement. There's four critical requirements in WCAG 2, and flickering or no flickering is one of them.
Number two, accessible content. So, make sure that you use high contrast colors for any text overlaying video content, and don't convey information with color alone. So, you know, don't show a map with the public tennis courts available in green and the private tennis courts available in blue. And avoid patterned backgrounds. So, this is an example of a problem with color contrast. You can see here that the caption is "Pope's Eye, Port Phillip Heads Marine National Park," and it's white text but the background is a very light green, and so it's quite difficult to read.
Accessible video player, so, look at your video player and make sure that it meets these requirements. It must have adequate keyboard access. So, it must be able to be operated by the keyboard. So, one of the best things that you can do is tab through your page and see if you can actually play, pause, change the volume using just the keyboard. Sufficient control and operation, so this is about making sure there are labels and things for people who use screen readers, and then implementing those things properly. So, that's more the developer's side. Color contrast is important in the video player itself, and don't rely on color alone. So, you might see that knowing when the closed captions are turned on or off is indicated by a color. So, if they're on, their little "CC" button is white, and if they're off, the little "CC" button is gray, and that's what I mean by relying on color alone.
So, this is the YouTube video. And we spent — about five years ago, we spent some time with a web development firm working on the YouTube video player to make it accessible. And about two years later we tested it again and it was actually a keyboard trap. So, what that means is that the keyboard gets trapped within the video. You can't go past the video. And as a result, to actually, you know, escape a keyboard trap, you need to close the site and close the browser and start again. So, it's a really big accessibility problem. It's another critical accessibility problem.
So, this is the thing about video players is that if you do come across a video player that claims to be accessible, firstly, just make sure that it is accessible, but secondly, find out how often they actually test their video player for accessibility, because you'll find that a change in — an update to a browser or an operating system or something like that will render all the work inaccurate and basically mean that that video player is no longer accessible.
So, let's have a little talk about YouTube. You think that YouTube was accessible. This is one of the reasons why it's not accessible. So, when you're tabbing through — well, and this is also the order that a screen reader will read the content — it's important that the order of the content on the screen matches the keyboard order as well as the screen reader order, because someone using a keyboard is — they often can see the screen, so they expect it to follow a natural pattern, left to right, top to bottom. And it's important that screen readers follow the right visual order as well because sometimes people with cognitive disabilities actually use screen readers. So, they also are looking at the page, and if it's jumping the order of the content that gets read, it's jumping around a lot, then that's going to be confusing to them.
So, when you tab into the YouTube page, the first thing you get to is the search bar, which is in the middle at the top of the page. And then if you tab again, you actually go backwards to the YouTube menu and the YouTube logo. And the next tab takes you to the very right-hand side of the page, which has the upload, notifications, and, you know, your account. Then you go to what are basically I suppose section links, which is "Home," "Pending," and "Subscriptions," and then you jump back to the left-hand side to the navigation. So, you can see that would be very confusing. And also the keyboard focus indicator, so what basically the indicator that shows where you are when you tab through things, that's not very good on YouTube. So, not only do you not follow a regular order but you can't tell where it is that your keyboard is.
I just see a chat that says "Seems frozen." Has everyone got YouTube with a "no keyboard focus indicator" on the screen? Okay. Great. Okay. So, this is another thing, one of the things, of course, we all like to do is skip the ads on videos. Now, it is keyboard accessible, however it doesn't have a keyboard focus indicator. So, the user doesn't know when they are actually on that "Skip Ad" link, and as a result that's going to be very difficult for people using keyboard only to operate.
The fourth thing to worry about is the lack of — you need to make sure that a video doesn't automatically play. We call this auto-play. Now, this is something that YouTube does by default. So, you'll find that if you go to a page with video, the video automatically plays. But the other problem is that once the video is finished, it will automatically play the next video. Now, in order to turn off that auto-play in the next video, you have to tab through the entire video and content to get to the auto-play button in the top right-hand corner, but it doesn't have a keyboard focus indicator. So, it is really hard to actually do if you are reliant entirely on a keyboard. Now, the problem with auto-play is that, you know, the video and the audio continues over the top of the screen reader. And so auto-play is actually another one of those criteria that are absolutely critical under WCAG 2.
Number five, captions. So, there are a couple of rules about captions. They should be synchronized to appear at the same time as they — as the sounds they're captioning. They should include all important audio information. It's not just about speech, it's also about the sounds in the video, the relevant sounds. So, you know, "car backfiring" if it's relevant, that kind of stuff. There needs to be sufficient color contrast between the background and the caption text. And they must appear on the screen for enough time to be actually read. You need to attribute speech to a particular speaker if there are multiple people on the page. And you need to identify all changes in speaker. You also should not contain important information that's not included in the video.
So, this is the YouTube auto-captioning, which has a few problems. So, basically, the person is saying, "Aw, man, just hold the phone up in the air and let me hear the ocean." And the YouTube automatic captioning has interpreted it as, "Aw, Reg, just hold up — hold the phone up in the end of idiom." So, it can be quite inaccurate. That doesn't mean that you can't use it. When it comes to captioning a video, what you can do is upload your video to YouTube, request that it auto-captions, and then you can actually download that caption file and modify it so that it's correct, and then re-upload it. So, you can use it to do things like time stamp, to make sure that the captions show up at the right time, but you can't rely on it entirely. It is something that you need to check.
Number six, audio descriptions, these are for people who are vision-impaired. Adequate — they need to adequately describe all important visual content. So, remember, it's only important visual content. If someone's wearing a red t-shirt is only important if that person wearing a red t-shirt is relevant to, you know, the video in some way. It should not impact on other speech or important sounds. And if there's a lot of speech in the video or a lot of sounds in the video, then you might need to provide extended audio descriptions where you pause the video and add those audio descriptions in.
The audio descriptions need to be distinguishable from the audio content in the video itself, and you'll see that or you'll hear that when you look at the Daredevil audio descriptions, if you have a chance to look at them later. You can definitely tell what is an audio description versus what is just the speech or the sounds in the video. And it also needs to contain only information that's included in the video and nothing else.
Number seven, you need to have transcripts. Transcripts need to be in an accessible format. So, you can't have, say, a PDF version of a transcript unless it's tagged properly. In the transcript, just like captions, you need to identify the speakers and include all speech. You also need to include relevant information about the speech. So, if it's relevant that someone is yelling, then you need to say that they're yelling in the transcript. You need to provide all non-speech audio information and any textual or graphical information.
Now, what I would suggest when it comes to creating a video is that you go through, create the captions, you write down what you're going to use as the audio descriptions, and you have to speak them aloud and add them as a second audio track. But then the text transcript is basically the captions added to the text version of the audio descriptions. So, it's really easy to do once you've done captions and audio descriptions.
The other thing that you need to think about is include a description of on-screen events and important changes of scene, and also you need to indicate the end of the transcript if it's on the same page as the video, or provide a message to return to the video if it's on another page. Now, unfortunately, products like YouTube don't have a standard way of providing transcripts. So, what I would suggest is that you actually have a standard, you know, like your first comment on a YouTube video or something like that is a link to your transcript. So, as long as you're consistent within your organization, that should be fine.
Now, we can't show you the video, unfortunately, the videos that I had planned, but these are definitely worth having a look at. So, I'll give you the URLs for them. But I — and it's a short presentation, but I always have about 20 minutes for questions when I run this presentation. So, I want to make sure that we left enough time. So, please let me know if you have any questions and I'll be happy to answer them.
Awesome. Thank you, Gian. Folks, if you have questions around accessibility of videos, you want to put them in the chat window. We will get to those. While we're waiting for some to come in, I want to remind people that this series is really just a part of a series of webinars that Gian has been delivering for PEAT. Two of the earlier webinars discussed, one was about tables and how to make those accessible, and the other was about images and how to make those accessible. And you can find both of those archived on the PEAT Works website. Gian, I see we have a question there from Alice. Would you like to address that?
Yeah, absolutely. Thanks, Alice. In terms of tools, I would suggest using the YouTube auto-captioning feature to create the captions, and then download it, modify it, and upload it again. And that doesn't mean that you have to have the video on YouTube permanently, but that is definitely the easiest way to add captions. The other tool that I recommend is Adobe Premier for developing the audio descriptions. It's very, very easy to develop the audio descriptions when you're using Premier. Unfortunately, it is something that costs money.
Annette, "Is there any additional concerns for training videos, for internal training as well as external training on products?" I presume, Annette, that you are talking about, you know, whether you need to meet accessibility requirements for internal training. And the answer is yes, and that's definitely what the FedEx lawsuit is about. Whether the content is for a select group of people or for the general public, it all needs to be accessible.
Now, in terms of risk management, you can definitely — you know, you need to prioritize which is more important, because obviously you can't click your fingers and make stuff accessible tomorrow. So, I would suggest that you, without knowing your specific situation, that you would actually focus on the external training on products because that's something that you know is going to reach more people and is maybe more important than internal training. But I can't speak to your specific situation. Annette, let me know if there's anything else that you would like me to talk about regarding that.
Joanne would like me to recommend a video player that is accessible. This is where we run into a little bit of problems. I run AccessibilityOz, and we actually have an accessible video player that's been out for three to four years.
And Gian, that's totally fine. It's totally fine. The question came up. I would plug it. It's a good product. And we're not only putting out AccessibilityOz products, so, by all means, you can share that briefly and we'll keep going.
Excellent. So, Oz Player, you know, full keyboard accessibility, supports captions and audio descriptions and things like that. It is actually free for not-for-profits that have an annual revenue of under a million U.S. dollars a year, or for websites that have less than ten videos. And there's an Oz Player Code Generator on our website where you just plug in the URL and you can, you know, use YouTube videos and things like that. Or you can host a video on your own site. So, that's what I would definitely recommend, because that's what we work on. If it's not — if you don't fit into those two categories, then it's two-thousand dollars license a year for an organization. And California community colleges all use Oz Player. So, it is used a lot.
The other one that is fully accessible is Able Player which is created by a guy, Terrill "Temp-something." My only [indiscernible] I mentioned earlier before is that you need to test your video players very regularly because, you know, if something changes and all of a sudden your captions show up twice, you might have browser updates or something like that. And we test every couple of weeks. So, we actually did do a video player analysis of about 28 different video players. And I might get PEAT Works to send through a link to that, if that's all right. And we talk about the accessibility of it as well as the screen reader accessibility of all these different video players. So, yeah, we'll send that out to you as well so you can have a look at exactly what is inaccessible in your own video players.
Now, Malcolm –.
Before we move on to other questions, I just want to address the captioning people. I apologize, Gian and to our participants, that there is a lot of gaps in the captioning. We will definitely have a clean transcript that we will post that will be used for the upload webinar version that's going to be on our website. So, folks can wait for that. And you can get the PowerPoint now and you'll be able to get a clean version of the captioning, along with the archived video, in the future. But moving on, Renee had a question there, Gian, that says, "What is the current status of requirements for audio descriptions in media platforms like Netflix?"Yes. So, just before I answer that, I just want to say that there is going to be a stat sheet that will be released in a couple — a week or two, I believe, and a blog post that will go into these things in more detail. I don't know, Josh, if you want to talk about that briefly.
Sure. So, all of the series of webinars we've been having Gian do, as I mentioned, we had one on tables earlier, we had one on images, we're going to do one on PDFs. She is also writing, with PEAT, a blog about those, so, kind of a brief overview, as well as a fact sheet, which is a real handy kind of how-to to-do that goes over the nuts and bolts and steps of all of what she's talking about today. So, in addition to the webinar, you'll have some very useful information that you can share and use yourself, and those will come out shortly.
Okay. So, Renee, interestingly, the current status of requirements for audio descriptions in media like Netflix is a little bit up in the air. So, WCAG 2, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines is seen as the de facto standard in the U.S. Basically, what that means is that organizations that have websites, such as Netflix, need to meet AA requirements. And so when the OCR has been involved, or Department of Justice, regarding a, you know, a lawsuit against a website, they have always required compliance with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines Level AA.
So, what that means is that the current status of requirements for Netflix is captions for all of their content, captions for all their live streaming content, which I [indiscernible] use it with live streaming, and audio descriptions for all their content. Now, unfortunately, some things are audio described in Netflix, but by no definition is everything audio described. So there are — they do not meet WCAG 2. They are behind the times, but, as I've said earlier, there's a real difference between people meeting requirements regarding captioning versus people meeting requirements via audio descriptions.
Jonathan Rowlands [ph] asks "Are you aware of any video players that support audio video descriptions on separate tracks?" I believe that Oz Player is the only one that supports audio descriptions as a separate track. If anyone has — disagrees with me, please let me know, because we'd like to add that to the video player list. But yes, in all the testing that we've done, we didn't find anything that, you know, separated the tracks.
Joseph, "Is there any reason why we should avoid embedding captions into videos, open captions versus closed captions that can be toggled on or off via video player?" No, there's really no reason why you wouldn't burn your captions in. I know there are some people that find captions distracting and they want to be able to turn it off, but, you know, you've got to weigh that up against the people that would really use them but don't necessarily know how to turn them on. Of course, if you have those open captions, you need to be really — you need to be careful about what they're overlaying. So, make sure they don't overlay any important content. But I think open captions are definitely a good idea.
"Can the transcript be used in place of closed captioning," asked by Suzette. Great name, Suzette. No, it can't. So, WCAG Level A requires both the transcripts and the captions. So, you really can't rely just on transcript. Of course, it may — providing a transcript and not closed captioning may mean that you're less liable to a complaint than if you didn't rely on anything at all just by the fact that people can access some of your video content by looking at the transcripts. But there's — yeah, definitely, it is very clear that you need transcripts and captions.
"Any live audio description companies, like live captioning companies?" That is a great question, Renee and Ken Dobson [ph], which is a great surname. I don't know of any. I will actually do a bit of research and I'll make sure I send the answer out. I'll get Josh to send the answer out when he sends out the link to the video. Thank you, Annette Welsh [ph], for saying that, usually your accent, that she enjoys listening and can understand completely.
"Is there any guidelines for making notes of accents?" That's another great question. What I would say to that is that if it was relevant to the video, then, yes, you should in your caption and transcript reference the accent. So, for example, if there was a video of me — back to that situation that I told you before where I spoke to a group of people and someone came up afterwards and commented on how great my accent was, then you'd want to do a little thing in the caption that says, you know, and have whatever I'm speaking about and then note "Strong Australian Accent," because then they would have the information to understand the comment that comes later. But if it's not really relevant to the video, then you don't need to include it.
In terms of transcripts, captions, audio descriptions, if you're not sure if it should be included, then just think about how relevant it is to the video. Is it something that if you were describing the video to someone else because they couldn't view it, would you mention it? And if the answer is yes, then it needs to be in the transcript, captions, or audio descriptions.
JW Player, in terms of accessibility compliance — let me just pull up my results. I will — JW Player. So, just so you know, this video comparison looks at YouTube, embedded YouTube, Vimeo, embedded Vimeo, PayPal, Flow Project, American Federation for the Blind, Able Player, ACORN, E-standards, Cultura, Brightcove, RAMP, Panopto, MAGpie, Video.js, Plyr — as in P-L-Y-R — Blackboard, and JW Player.
JW Player failed, uses color alone in their controls, the color contrast is in the video itself is not sufficient, and the video is not keyboard accessible, which is not a good thing. And it doesn't have a highly visible keyboard focus indicator. It also is completely inaccessible to screen readers. It failed absolutely every single screen reader requirement, including labeling the controls, determining if the button status is on or off, announcing the volume while changing, announcing the current time of current played movie, being able to fast forward or rewind, turning on captions and subtitles. So, it failed all of them. So, it was actually one of the lowest — in fact, I think it was the lowest at 30 percent accessible. But, as I said, I'll put this up — I'll send this out.
Jeremy Smith [ph] asks, "What is the best approach if you cannot control the player the user is using?" Well, that's the thing is that when I'm talking about players, I'm talking about the embedded players that you have on your website. So, you should be able to control that. So, I presume you mean that, you know, if you're locked into a certain player, what can you do. It's — yeah, that's a good question. I would — we're working with some organizations to see if they can overlay Oz Player on top of their, you know, CDM, you know, Cultural or Brightcove or things like that. So, that might be one thing that can be done.
I would suggest making sure that you have a very obvious text transcript and also having a very clear way for users to tell you if they can't use the player. And if you know the things that are inaccessible about the video player, then I suggest that you contact that video player manufacturer and say, "These are the things we want you to fix. And, you know, we're thinking of looking elsewhere" — whether you are or not doesn’t matter, but you can definitely tell them that — "if you don't address these things, because they're mandatory requirements for us."
In terms of Hillary Tupnam's [ph] question, "What source am I using to rate players," we did the testing ourselves. You can go through — we actually have 12 items that we tested against. And we tested it in a variety of operating systems and browsers as well as mobile operating systems and browsers. And so keyboard accessibility we tested, you know, on Chrome Windows 8 — sorry, Windows 8 and 10, i11, IE, Edge Windows 8 and 10, Firefox Windows 8 and 10, Safari on Mac, Firefox on Mac, as well as, you know, iPhone Safari, iPad Safari, Samsung Galaxy Chrome, Samsung Galaxy Tab Chrome. And if it failed any one of them, then it was a fail. So, we were very stringent about this testing.
And then the second part was the screen reader testing. And we actually got a very experienced screen reader tester to do the screen reader testing, and he actually did the screen reader testing for the Amazon Kindle. And so, once again, if it failed one thing, he tested screen readers on mobile devices as well as a variety of different [indiscernible] NDDH [ph] and Window, i, on the various different desktop operating systems and browsers, and, of course, the voiceover and, you know, all the mobile screen readers. And if it failed one of those things, then we marked it as a fail.
Now, luckily for us, Oz Player did come out on top, but it only got 81 percent. It failed three things, which is something that we're going to address. So, you know, we'd love to get other people to do this testing because we know that it does look biased. But, yeah, it was a lot of work. And yes, Hilary, I will definitely share the results. It's actually up on our website. In fact, I might see if I can get you access now. I don't know, Josh, if you want to just take over for a second while I try and find the document.
Sure thing. And I love the interaction. Thank you for answering in rapid fire all of those questions, Gian. And thank you folks for chiming in. We do just have a couple of quick minutes before we wrap up, so I know she's looking up that information and going to type it in. I will start to give you a little bit. There, she put the URL in there. Thank you. I believe that was our last question we have at the moment. Is that correct, Gian? Yes. I just — it requires a password.
So, I'm just going to put the password in as well.
Okay. Thank you for sharing that.
There you go.
There it is. Super. Thank you for sharing that. And folks, thanks for your question and your resources. I think we'll wrap up there. I don't see any more questions coming in. I want to remind folks that we've got one more lined up in this series with Gian. I see how popular it was, and hope people are finding this useful. We've got one coming in March 23rd. We're going to be discussing PDFs, which are widely used and have a lot of accessibility issues. So, Gian's going to help guide us through that. And we will post those registration links on our site soon, so be on the lookout for that.
Additionally, I want to make people aware we have just lined up a PEAT Talk that we have every third Thursday of the month, and we just lined up one for February. That's going to be with representatives from ADP, the large kind of payroll services, HR technology, and audio eye, and accessibility consultant and platform. And they're going to discuss — they have made some huge gains on ADP's latest platform, which is going to have a big impact in the work world here. So, they're going to come on and discuss that with us. And you can find registrations links for all of these events on PEATworks.org.
Look out for an email. We'll have information up on this webinar — for this webinar in the next week or two. We'll have stuff on our PEAT Talks next week. But currently, I wanted to let you know we have some information up regarding an upcoming webinar from the U.S. Access Board and it's discussing the 508 regulations refresh that just got released. And we're super excited to hear. I know many folks have been waiting for that. So, be sure and check that out. And you can see the details on our website.
Again, I'd like to give a special thank you to Gian for speaking with us today and waking up early. To all of you who took the time to join us, and our team for helping put this together, I hope you all have a great rest of the afternoon and we will see you again in the future. Thanks so much.