A Summary of CCAC Objectives

This is an article that you can use in your own newsletter, for your own blog, and for distribution to your networks. Ask for a photo to enhance your distribution of the article. Please attribute any use to the CCAC with a link to our webpages, and let us know via cc line or email that you are using it, with thanks. CCACaptioning@gmail.com

The Collaborative for Communication Access Via Captioning Invites You to Join

CCAC logo with quote Caption Universally

ADVOCACY FOR QUALITY CAPTIONING UNIVERSALLY is the CCAC mission. We invite you to join us in one of the most significant and meaningful new grass-roots advocacy communities in the world. If you support the CCAC mission, hearing or not, deaf or not, individuals and groups, come on board. The CCAC is doing great advocacy on many levels every day. Access to information in all the places we need it is vital. Captioning inclusion for mega-millions of people is a human rights issue.  We have more to do together!

Captioning speaks to us all – it’s our language, and it is missing in too many places. Many of us cannot comprehend speech well in group situations, even with other resources and technologies. We require quality captioning/subtitles in many places, and the CCAC outlines ten places called CCAC categories of life — from education, employment, and entertainment to government, healthcare, transportation, and more. Moreover, captioning benefits many others for more good reasons – for language learning, literacy, translations and search online, and also for different listening and learning styles. The CCAC is not another deaf, deafened, or hearing loss group: we are a consumer captioning advocacy non-profit organization, all volunteers, users, providers, and many others together.

In the autumn of 2009, it was decided that a new focused captioning advocacy project was needed. It started first in the USA and quickly attracted international support and participation. It is an international advocacy community to raise awareness, educate and advocate on many levels (local, national, international) for inclusion of quality captioning where none exists now. The CCAC builds bridges among all individuals and groups for captioning advocacy.

The CCAC is all volunteers, no paid staff and no rent, keeping expenses to a minimum. Advocacy costs money however, and we invite donations. CCAC is a unique and wonderful “working community” online, and has also had four in-person CCAC “meet-ups” since early days (California, New York, London (UK), and Seattle). From 2009 with seven colleagues, the CCAC has expanded to over 800 members in 2015, and thousands more on active social networks. We also arrange online chats with live captioning from time to time. The CCAC film, “Don’t Leave Me Out!” is a major advocacy accomplishment, and plays globally at conferences and on the Internet, subtitled in several languages. Other advocacy campaigns, projects, and accomplishments are outlined on the CCAC website (e.g. March 2015, New York Times Starts to use Quality CC thanks to CCAC advocacy!).

CCAC participants have a nice balance of “consumers” and “providers” – all working together to encourage and create new captioning inclusion projects, as well as many interested others from education, technology, disability, and accessibility fields. Consumers are all who use captioning,  all the time, or sometimes, or support the mission due to an understanding of disabilities, technologies, accessibility issues, and more, e.g. many “normal” hearing folks love CC in noisy environments.

Sharing questions and knowledge in the CCAC group is very effective. In year one of the CCAC, captioning inclusion achievements included CART for Court, requests for CART for professional conferences, captioning reminders for Internet videos, captioning advocacy for live theater and museum videos, and more. Year two continued expansion of the same. In year three (2012), the Captioning Advocacy Projects (CAPs) were so numerous that the summaries in the newsletters are informative (on the CCAC website now). In 2012 CCAC became an official charity (non-profit) 501(c)3 organization. Years 2013, 2014 and 2015 include many new energies and great advocacy actions! Your help is invited and needed. Join the CCAC and with one of the newest programs, you may be eligible for your own Free Live Captioning for an event of your choice.

While many established organizations advocate for captioning (and CART, real time captioning or “speech-to-text”, with various names in different countries), those organizations have wider agendas (they advocate for many other resources also ) or wider constituencies (they advocate for people with many different disabilities). The CCAC focuses on one single theme, inclusion of quality captioning universally. Collaborations are welcome.

Consumers  “drive” progress by asking for captioning, sometimes facing many “no’s” and often a long process that requires persistence and a “do not give up” attitude. The CCAC provides encouragement, support online, mentoring, and valuable information and exchange. Much of it is publicly available, freely, online or via emails. Participation in the CCAC community online is useful because more is shared with interactive discussion and actions are created and carried out. Join soon. .

Building bridges in the CCAC – “the place to be for captioning advocacy” – we invite other groups to work with us,  share their own news, advocacy experiences and advocacy questions.

The CCAC has helped members with “CCAC Action Requests,” not only for specific information, but also with “letters of support” when any member is seeking real time speech to text. The newest programs are free CART sponsored by the CCAC for selected other non-profits, also for major large conferences, and for CCAC members. See the application on the CCAC website. (March 2015, for one example, CCAC letter of support for Oregon Senate Bill for captioning online, making progress there, with thanks to all involved).

In most countries, real time captioning is thought to be “expensive” and we aim to find ways to demonstrate how it is not over-costly and how important it is. Captioning is our “ramp” for  equal communication access, similar to wheelchair ramps which are generally accepted and provided in many countries in the modern world.

There is much more information about the CCAC on the website, including how to participate, research articles, and models for your own campaigns. We welcome your interest and support. The web address is http://ccacaptioning.org, and e-mail is ccacaptioning@gmail.com.

CaptionMatch is a newer form of CCAC education and advocacy – a non-profit CCAC service with the goal of making it easier for anyone, anyplace, to ask for captioning needed and find a provider. See http://captionmatch.com for more information, to register as a consumer, an organization, or provider, and expand communication access for yourself and others.