Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Captioned Web TV Shows Competing for Streamy Awards!

The Streamy Awards (the web television equivalent of the Academy Awards) are back! Captioned web television programs are competing for Streamy Awards. The competition is FIERCE - and this is where the deaf and hard of hearing community can make a difference.

Why can you make a difference? You can make a difference because for the FIRST time, fans can submit shows for Streamy nominations. Shows that get the most fan submissions become one of the five nominees for each category in the Streamys. How can your fan submission make a difference? Well, did you ever take a test that you got a B on instead of an A because you got one or two questions wrong? When the competition is fierce the difference in the totals can be very narrow - and your submission could make the difference between whether a web TV program becomes a nominee or not.


You can submit as many shows in as many categories (e.g., comedy, drama) as you want! But submit ONLY shows that are closed captioned! Go to Streamys.org/submissions to make a fan submission. Below are known captioned shows that are competing for a Streamy award. You can submit any show from captionedwebtv.blogspot.com, but these are known to have already been submitted.  (Check back frequently as this list will be updated when we learn of more captioned shows that have been submitted for consideration. The last day to make a fan submission is July 27.)

  1. Black Box TV  (horror, science fiction, thriller, zombies))
  2. Clutch (action, adult)
  3. Convos with My 2-Year-Old  (comedy, parenting, family) 
  4. Emma Approved (comedy, vlog)
  5. Horror Hotel (horror, mystery, science fiction)
  6. Jewvangelist (comedy)
  7. Larps (Action, Drama, Fantasy) 
  8. Lizzie Bennet Diaries (romance, vlog)
  9. Misdirected (comedy, soap)
  10. My Gimpy Life (comedy)
  11. Out with Dad (teen, gay)
  12. Producing Juliet (drama, gay)
  13. Sexplanations (health)
  14. SourceFed  (comedy, news)
  15. Super Knocked Up (comedy, superhero)
  16. Where the Bears Are (comedy, gay)
  17. Platoon of Power Squadron (action, sci-fi)
We submitted some of these shows ourselves. Again, here is the URL for voting:


Saturday, July 5, 2014

Captioning? Oh, We Will Consider It Later.

If you need a better insight into the mindset of web TV producers regarding captioning, look no further than Chris Hadley's web TV reviews on a popular web TV review site, Snobby Robot. Hadley ALWAYS asks web TV producers if they are or will, closed caption their shows. More often than not, the answers are VERY disappointing and revealing.

Samples

1. Crowd Funding with Hopper and Finch: A Show That's Not Your Typical "Buddy" Comedy - Published 7/3, at the very end the producer's response: "...the show is not currently closed captioned, but that he will explore utilizing that feature once season 1 debuts."
2. Mighty Woman Adventures: What Happens When a TV Superhero Suddenly Becomes a Real One? Published 7/2/2014, at the very end the current status:  (Note: While the show has yet to air, its trailer is not currently closed captioned.)
3. The Mop and Lucky Files Season 2: Published 7/1/2014, at the very end a not-so-nice statement by the producer: The series is not currently closed captioned, and the show’s creators say they have no plans to do so for season 2.

See how unimportant deaf and hard of hearing people and their need for closed captioning is to producers of web TV? Their own public statements reveal their attitudes and failure to incorporate closed captioning into their planning.

"Hoping" To Caption

Now and then a producer tells Mr. Hadley that they "hope to" caption, like in these. Unfortunately our experience has been that even with good intentions expressed up front, captioning often gets forgotten in the rush to complete the project.

1. A Guy Going Crazy: The Road to Hollywood Has Never Been This Bumpy - Published 6/30/2014, this producer tells Mr. Hadley at the very end that they "hope to produce a closed captioned version for the deaf and hard of hearing."
2. Narrators: What if That Voice Inside Your Head Was Real? - Published 6/16/2014, this producer tells Mr. Hadley at the very end that "The series is not currently closed-captioned or subtitled, but [producer] hopes he can have that feature in place soon.")
3. Professor Bob's Brain Stew: A Fun, Magical and Interactive Approach To Teaching Science - Published 6/11/2014, at the end of this review of this edutainment program the producer tells Mr. Hadley "the series is not currently closed-captioned, but [producer] says he hopes to add that feature to each episode within the next few months." Caption Action 2 comment: We'll see if they are serious after a few months. The first episode was posted in May and it is now July.

Can't Afford to Caption

Or a producer that is relying on crowd funding claims it can't afford to caption, as in these examples:

1. Crowd Funding the Aussie Way with The Cleanists: At the very end, the producers tell Mr. Hadley "We would love the series to be closed captioned and/or subtitled. It’s not in our budget at the moment, but we’d definitely be trying to make that happen."

Say They Will Then Don't

Or the producer says they hope to have captions/subtitles by the time the show premieres - and the premiere date arrives and there are no captions or subtitles, as in this example:

1. I Don't: A Polarizing Debate on the Subject of Marriage - Published 6/9/2014, the producer told Mr. Hadley at the very end that  "The series is not currently closed-captioned, but [producer] says he would like to add captions and subtitles (in Spanish) to each episode before its premiere date of July 4th on Youtube." Caption Action 2 note: The videos are already posted on YouTube, without captions or subtitles. We were forgotten in the rush to get online on time.

All of Chris Hadley's web TV reviews on Snobby Robot can be seen here.


Saturday, June 28, 2014

Cheers and Dismay at New YouTube CrowdSourced Captioning

We knew it was coming. Crowdsourced captioning for YouTube! Would we finally be able to stop the begging for captions on YouTube or at least reduce it sharply? Doesn't look like it! Here is why:

According to the new support page "Contributing subtitles and closed captions" on YouTube, https://support.google.com/youtube/answer/6054623,  YES, people can create captions for YouTube videos. BUT, the channels have to be voluntarily participating!


 Expand that "+" and you get a list of who is participating currently.



What is the problem with this? The problem is that word "Participating." Unless a channel is participating - voluntarily - there won't be any crowd sourced captioning. If they are participating, and if they have enabled this feature for the video, you will see this when you select the CC icon (if the CC icon is turned on at all). Otherwise, you won't see this.




So, cheers to YouTube for providing another option for increasing captioning on YouTube. Dismay because of the requirement that channels be participating in order to have the crowd sourced captions. Which means the begging has to continue. Only it will now have the newly added plea, "Could you participate in the YouTube Crowdsourced Captioning option?"