Did you know that adding caption files to multimedia is good for search engine optimization (SEO)? Search engine spiders crawl text files including captions and transcripts. That’s one of the many benefits of web accessibility.
Imagine a world where search engines provide you accurate results to snippets of the episode where your favorite performer said a specific quote?
This can be done with accurate captioning.
A real-life situation
As a Deaf user, if I ask Google, “show me the episode where Joey said pizza! we like pizza!”, I’m asking for a video clip with captions of that specific moment.
My initial search result gave me an obscure list of YouTube videos along with several results suggesting a list of Joey’s famous quotes. Unfortunately, I don’t have time to watch several minutes of video or scan the top ten web pages missing specific information about the episode itself.
Instead, I asked Vicky of Buddy the Traveling Monkey who is a Friends trivia master. After she told me which episode the scene occurred in, I refined my Google search query.
It turns out Joey said this in season 6, episode 17, The One with Unagi 1. Due to video editing, I’m unable to determine the exact moment in the original episode this occurs.
Why accessibility matters
With over 500 hours of videos being uploaded to YouTube per minute, it’s clear that accessibility is becoming more important now than ever before 2.
Remember that example with the query where Joey says “Pizza! We eat pizza!”? Apply that example to real-life situations where you can ask Alexa or Google to show you specific answers to your question.
- Alexa, show me how to perform CPR on a cat?
- Google, show me which ingredients do I need to make pizza sauce with?
Imagine how much time you would save if you have an answer in the form of a video snippet tuned into the exact moment without all the unnecessary content.
About Deque University
As part of my professional development goals, I’m enrolled in Deque University. Deque University is an extension of Deque Systems where the focus is on finding and fixing accessibility issues on websites and mobile apps.
About the Web Accessibility program
Deque University’s Web Accessibility program is designed for developers and programmers. It goes beyond the basics that are covered in a lot of articles online. This certificate is the seventh of the eleven topics listed below.
UX Notice: Each certificate below is linked to my post for that certification.
- Accessibility Fundamentals – Disabilities, Guidelines, and Laws
- Designing an Accessible User Experience
- Semantic Structure and Navigation
- Images, SVG, and Canvas>
- Visual Design and Colors
- Responsive Design and Zoom
- Multimedia, Animations, and Motion
- Device-Independent User Input Methods
- Form Labels, Instructions, and Validation
- Dynamic Updates, AJAX, and Single-Page Apps
What this certificate covers
Deque University provides a certificate for completion for each lesson in their program. Here’s a list of topics covered in the Multimedia, Animation, and Motion lesson.
- Multimedia Accessibility Decision Matrix
- Audio Descriptions
- Sign Language Interpretation
- Media Player Accessibility
- Background Sounds
- Seizure-Inducing Flashes
- Animations and Motion
- Legal Requirements
Why this course is awesome
There’s a lot of information involved when it comes to web accessibility. As with all the other Deque University courses, it’s been a fantastic learning experience.
In this case, the topics on captions, transcripts, and audio descriptions were very comprehensive. It’s not just about adding captions to multimedia and how to make it accessible. It’s also about understanding the code behind accessibility features.
My Certificate of Completion
There’s a popular saying, “Show, don’t tell.”
With that said, I’m displaying my certificate here.
It’s worth educating yourself on how to make multimedia accessible to everyone.
By learning how it works on the back end, you can explain the problem so the coders can figure out how to resolve the issue. Yes, it does take some extra effort and time. However, if you are going to do something, do it right from the start.
It’s better to be praised for being accessible than known for being inaccessible.
Your insights matters
As a Deaf developer, accessibility is important regardless of whether it is online or in the real world. I would love to learn more from you about why accessibility matters to you. The more I learn, the more I can help educate others.
Whether it’s something you experience on a daily basis or randomly, feel free to share your experience by leaving a comment below.