The ACMA has found that NBN Limited breached a condition of its broadcasting licence by failing to provide a captioning service for the TV Week Logie Awards broadcast on 1 May 2011.
Under the Broadcasting Services Act 1992 (the Act), commercial television licensees must provide a captioning service for all programs transmitted between 6pm and 10:30pm on their primary channel.
NBN, an affiliate of the Nine Network, submitted that the program went to air without captions due to a system error in NBN’s retransmission of caption feeds from Nine Network’s Sydney station, TCN. NBN advised that its operation staff failed to identify this error.
To prevent further such occurrences, NBN has implemented a visual alarm in the direct eye line of the caption presentation coordinator; and, in consultation with a representative of the deaf community, will, before the end of October 2011, set up a twitter feed to enable real time reporting of captioning errors by NBN presentation staff.
These measures are additional to the systems audit and improvements undertaken by NBN in response to previous breaches of captioning requirements found by the ACMA.
The ACMA continues to work with industry, consumers and other government bodies to develop an agreed set of indicators for the assessment of caption quality.