A website devoted to exploring accessibility at the intersection of technology and rhetoric. What began in 2008 as a space to explore accessible podcasting has turned into an ongoing reflection on the rhetoric of closed captioning. I welcome your feedback.
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Podcasting 2.0

Towards an accessible Web, part 2 Sean Zdenek Texas Tech University Computers & Composition Online (Fall 2009) Contents Introduction Limiting access in the Podcasting Bible A critique of “on the fly” podcasting (Part 1, 2) Podcasting 2.0: Towards an accessible Web (Part 1, 2) References About the author My own approach to accessibility emphasizes bodily...

Podcasting 2.0

Towards an accessible Web, part 1 Sean Zdenek Texas Tech University Computers & Composition Online (Fall 2009) Contents Introduction Limiting access in the Podcasting Bible A critique of “on the fly” podcasting (Part 1, 2) Podcasting 2.0: Towards an accessible Web (Part 1, 2) References About the author Making podcasts accessible is a pretty straightforward...

Deaf American Gladiator

While browsing Hulu.com the other day, I caught a glimpse (on the site’s scrolling image bar) of what looked like a cochlear implant attached to the head of a contestant on American Gladiators. Because I have an ongoing interest in how deafness and cochlear implants are visually and discursively constructed in the media, I located...

Support for video annotations on YouTube

YouTube recently added support for video annotations and in-video links. Three types of annotations are supported: speech bubbles, notes, and spotlights. As Bill Creswell rightly pointed out a couple days ago, YouTube’s implementation is similar to what users can do with “bubbles” on BubblePly.com. One key difference is that YouTube’s annotations do not fully capitalize...

Aggregating feeds to search for captioned web videos

On the subject of captioned programming on the Web, Closed Captioning Web suggests in a recent blog post that More major network channels are setting up video players on their sites..and the good news is, the players show captions! More and more captioned programming is now available through Fox.com (read the review at Disabled in the Digital...

Podcasting and embodiment

Mainstream discourse about podcasting rarely discusses the affordances of the body. It rarely makes explicit the minimum requirements for participating, at the level of embodiment, or the bodily differences among users and producers that threaten to exclude some people from profitably using web audio and video. Instead, mainstream discourse about podcasting tends to assume a...

Audio description as technical communication

So I’ve been thinking about audio description as technical communication, and in particular the value that an audio description assignment might have for technical communication undergrads. According to the BBC’s Ouch!, audio description is an extra audio commentary for blind or partially sighted people. When there is a gap in the dialogue on TV or...

Captioning tornado warnings on TV

We all know how terribly unreliable and inaccurate TV captions can be. On the local TV news in my area (Lubbock, TX), the captions are usually pretty good because the written transcript being fed through the teleprompter is also used for captioning. Problems with captions occur when announcers ad-lib, for example during sports and weather segments.  On the...

About Sean Zdenek

Sean Zdenek is an associate professor of technical communication and rhetoric at Texas Tech University. His research interests include disability and accessibility studies, methods of rhetorical criticism, and sound studies. For more info or to contact him: Visit his Texas Tech faculty profile. See his current courses. Download his curriculum vitae. Send him email: sean.zdenek@ttu.edu. Follow...