When Autocraptions Fail, Stenographers Step Up

In a series of images posted by Michelle M. Kirkpatrick on September 28, 2021, the failure of automatic captions was on full display.

What society would turn a blind eye to this kind of suffering?
Not accessible = not acceptable

Knowing that people were in need, she stepped up to help and contacted deaf people in the area to let them know what the broadcast said.

It’s very clear how close to danger these people were.

This comes on the heels of reports that digital reporting proponent Verbit was pseudo-cybersquatting on 121 Captions.

Alternative to 121. I should try this strategy with them and see how it goes.

Given all the data released on Stenonymous as of posting, it is clear that digital and ASR solutions are inadequate for captioning. The dishonesty and blatant disregard for standard industry practices from Verbit in particular has been contemptible. The stenographic captioner has the best value out of all available methods. People interested in joining the profession and ensuring access for all should check out NCRA A to Z, Project Steno, or Open Steno. Despite claims by the STTI that there is an equivalency in modalities, it’s been shown that digital and non-voice writing ASR solutions would harm African American Vernacular English speakers. In the words of one ex-digital reporter, they were simply not paid enough to care. Luckily, spam filters continue to place STTI promotional material where it belongs.

2 thoughts on “When Autocraptions Fail, Stenographers Step Up

  1. I thought automated captions were ruled insufficient and in violation of the ADA. Maybe the National Association of the Deaf should pursue legal action again.

    1. I’m unsure about the ruling but I know that pointing out the inadequacy of autocraptions is a big topic for a lot of captioning providers and advocates. I think they’re up against a really tough misconception that automation is taking over everything. They have to break that down just to get to the point of saying why steno is better.

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