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Welcome to the Audio Description Project!

Here you will learn everything about Audio Description, from what is it, to samples, to who does it, to how and where it is available in various media.  You can also join our online discussion, follow us on Facebook or Twitter, and be notified of updates to this page by typing your email address in the box to the right and pressing the Submit button. 

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Featured Articles

Actiview for Movie Theaters

A new company called Actiview promises to eliminate the problems that patrons have with movie theater-issued accessibility equipment.  "When you step into the theater, all of the movie’s accessibility content will be available at no extra cost in our mobile app that requires no in-theater setting, fussing or maintenance."  They aim to eliminate the frustration currently occuring with faulty receivers, dead batteries, etc.  As one early reviewer put it, "Phone in pocket, enjoy the movie. That’s it."  The smartphone product is still under development.  Learn more about Actiview.  (Posted July 21)

2016 ADP Conference Audio Files Available

LISTEN to the 2016 Conference speakers!  (Posted July 21)

 2016 Audio Description Award Winners

Presented at the ACB and ADP Conferences.  Press ReleaseThe Audio Description Honor Roll.  (Updated July 21)

  • Achievement in Audio Description - Performing Arts: Arts Access, Raleigh, NC
  • Achievement in Audio Description - Media: Fred Brack, ADP Webmaster, Raleigh, NC
  • Achievement in Audio Description - Museums: Dole Institute of Politics / Audio-Reader Network, Lawrence, KS
  • Achievement in Audio Description - International: Bos Soluções e Serviços Ltda. - Sao Paulo, Brazil
  • Special Recognition Achievement in Audio Description: Alice Austin, Eliot, ME
  • Special Recognition Achievement in Audio Description: Mark Messersmith, The Visual Voice - Mountain View, CA
  • Dr. Margaret R. Pfanstiehl Memorial Achievement Award in Audio Description - Research and Development: Disney / Pixar "Disney Movies Anywhere App" - Los Angeles, CA
  • Barry Levine Memorial Award for Career Achievement in Audio Description: Dr. Francisco Lima - Recife, Brazil

The FCC Needs YOUR Input re Description on TV
COMMENT PERIOD ENDS JULY 26!!!

On May 27th, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) published in the Federal Register a Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM) on expanding audio description. This NPRM would significantly increase access to audio described programming on broadcast and cable networks. You will find a link to the FCC's NPRM below.  It proposes the following key rule changes:

  • Increase the amount of described programming on each included network carried by a covered broadcast station or multichannel video programming distributor, from 50 hours per calendar quarter to 87.5 (a 75% increase)
  • Increase the number of networks required to provide video description from four broadcast and five non-broadcast networks to five broadcast and ten non-broadcast networks
  • Create a "no-backsliding" rule, so a network would remain subject to the rules even if it is no longer one of the top five or top ten ranking networks; and
  • Require video programming distributors to provide proper customer support contacts in order to improve consumer access to video description.

ACB has long been the leading advocate for audio described television content. We welcome the FCC's proposed rule and look forward to submitting comments on the benefits such expansion will have for Americans who are blind or visually impaired. While the first round of comments were due June 27th, reply comments are not due until July 26th. This gives individuals an opportunity to respond to industry concerns. ACB will be holding a national conference call the week following our 2016 ACB National Convention in Minneapolis, and in the meantime we encourage you to submit your own personal story on how audio described programming has positively impacted your life.

USE THESE LINKS to view the proposal, see other people's comments, and submit your own comments:  (Updated July 19)

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Audio Description News

Audio Described DVDs and Blu-ray Discs

Two new Audio Described DVDs were released on July 19: Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Miles Ahead.  The previous week, Everybody Wants Some, Miracles From Heaven, and The Divergent Series: Allegiant were released.  (Updated July 19)

Featured DVD Featured DVD
Featured DVD Featured DVD Featured DVD

2016 Recent:  Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Miles Ahead, Everybody Wants Some, Miracles From Heaven, The Divergent Series:  Allegiant, I Saw the Light, Kung Fu Panda 3, Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, Midnight Special, My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2, The Brothers Grimsby, 10 Cloverfield Lane, Eddie the Eagle, London Has Fallen, The Young Messiah, 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi, Anomalisa, Hail Caesar, The Other Side of the Door, Zootopia, Gods of Egypt, Pride + Prejudice + Zombies, How to be Single, Risen, The Finest Hours, Zoolander No. 2: The Magnum Edition, Deadpool, Joy, The Choice, The 5th Wave, Krampus, Ride Along 2, Son of Saul, The Revenant, more ...

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New Audio Described TV Series

History Channel will be begin description for Ancient Aliens Fridays at 9pm.

USA Network will begin description for its new series Shooter on Tuesday July 26.

(Updated July 19)

Help With Promoting Audio Description Locally

If you have the opportunity to promote audio description locally to an organization you belong to or are asked to speak to, we have developed a ONE PAGE document that you can customize as necessary for your area.  It explains briefly what description opportunities are available:  live theatre, TV, DVDs, and internet streaming.  It then points readers to our site to learn more (like specifically what shows, movies, or TV series have description).  Download your own copy for customization by right-clicking the following link:  Audio Description: What's Available?   (Posted July 6)

The Audio Description Project's website collects and provides information on audio description in all its forms: live theatre, television, movies, DVDs, and more.  Started in 2002 by AD International, funding and direction for this website now come from the American Council of the Blind's Audio Description Project (started in March 2009).  Read more about this site ...

Audio Description (AD) is the descriptive narration of key visual elements of live theatre, television, movies, and other media to enhance their enjoyment by consumers who are blind or have low vision.  AD is the insertion of audio explanations and descriptions of the settings, characters, and action taking place in such media, when such information about these visual elements is not offered in the regular audio presentation.  Read more about audio description ...

Based on his doctoral thesis and teaching audio description around the world, ADP Project Director Dr Joel Snyder's book, The Visual Made Verbal, is available in print, for Kindle, and on Bookshare.  Read more details about Dr Snyder's book

Dedicated organizations around the world facilitate the offering of audio description in select movie theaters, videos, live theatre, and television programming, and this website attempts to expose their fine work to as many interested viewers as possible. Thank you for visiting!