Harvard & M.I.T. sued over lack of captions

The importance of educational media accessibility is in the spotlight, as lawsuits against both Harvard and M.I.T. were filed by the National Deaf Association last week. The lawsuits are over the failure of the two schools to adequately caption their online learning content. This content includes various video and audio material, including online lectures and podcasts.

New York Times article link

This should be an informative legal proceeding and one to keep an eye on. It may impact interpretation and enforcement of already existing laws that relate to electronic media access like ADA and the Rehabilitation Act, especially as online learning increases in higher education.

Here at UT, we’re very concerned with accessibility and are proud of the efforts made to caption campus media. However, even with significant progress made thus far, there’s more to be done. These lawsuits emphasize the importance of our university’s efforts to level the playing field and provide access to the benefits of online learning to everyone.

Students captioning
Two student-workers captioning video content at the University of Texas at Austin Libraries.

If you are a content owner and have questions or need captions please contact me or visit our site for more info.

Daniel Jacobs – daniel.jacobs@austin.utexas.edu







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