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Community & Business Groups

Audio Description Community Group

Mission: To create an open standard file format to support audio description all the way from scripting to mixing. Scope: To agree requirements and propose a workable open standard file format for audio description, probably a profile of TTML2, with the intention of moving to the Rec track within a Working Group. Deliverables:
  • Requirements document
  • Draft specification document
  • Explainer

Note: Community Groups are proposed and run by the community. Although W3C hosts these conversations, the groups do not necessarily represent the views of the W3C Membership or staff.

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Press clipping: [Broadcast] “Where is TV audio description heading in 2019?”

On 31 January 2019, Claudia Cahalane, blogs editor and accessibility advocate of AbilityNet, wrote in Broadcast, in article “Where is TV audio description heading in 2019?”:

[…]It seems that on top of tech and financial challenges around growing AD across more platforms and services, broadcasters are grappling with how to create appealing, fitting and engaging AD scripts that slot between dialogue and sound within programmes.

We heard that the formation of the W3C (World Wide Web Consortium) Community Group on audio description last year is looking to address this. The group aims to release an open standard file format for AD by the end of this year, according to Nigel Megitt, executive product manager at the BBC and chair of the W3C group.

The impetus, he said, is that “Audio description is fantastic, but all the tools you use to make it are proprietary – there’s no way to exchange information about the production of audio description.”

Having some ‘standard tooling’ to do this would make it cheaper and easier for more people to create AD, Meggitt told delegates at the Google-sponsored event.[…]

Face to face meeting at TPAC2018

Our first face to face meeting is planned for W3C’s TPAC in Lyon.

The schedule shows this meeting will be held on Thursday 25th October 10:30-12:30 in Saint Clair 3B, Level 2 – Saint Clair. I hope you can make it. Some people have registered already and some people have asked to observe as well.

We should have a draft agenda for the meeting.

Suggestions for topics are welcome of course. Here is a starter:

  • Requirements for Audio Description: have we got them right?
  • Progress in TTML2: what features are available for use?
  • Run-through of proposed outline specification (no actual document exists yet!)
  • Implementation progress: demonstration of BBC prototype “adhere”
  • Next steps: making a specification for a profile of TTML2; roles, tools, timelines etc.

W3C won’t provide a conference phone but I’m hoping to arrange for a dial-up to be available – please let me know if you’d like to use one.

Call for Participation in Audio Description Community Group

The Audio Description Community Group has been launched:


Mission: To create an open standard file format to support audio description all the way from scripting to mixing.

Scope: To agree requirements and propose a workable open standard file format for audio description, probably a profile of TTML2, with the intention of moving to the Rec track within a Working Group.

Deliverables:

  • Requirements document
  • Draft specification document
  • Explainer

In order to join the group, you will need a W3C account. Please note, however, that W3C Membership is not required to join a Community Group.

This is a community initiative. This group was originally proposed on 2018-04-05 by Nigel Megitt. The following people supported its creation: Nigel Megitt, Mike Dolan, Chris O'Brien, Gradimir Kragić, Gandharv Bhagat, Gian Wild, Marisa DeMeglio, Sally Cain, John Paton, John Birch, Matthew Paradis, Owen Edwards, Jonathan Penny. W3C’s hosting of this group does not imply endorsement of the activities.

The group must now choose a chair. Read more about how to get started in a new group and good practice for running a group.

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Thank you,
W3C Community Development Team