Machine transcription isn’t ready for prime time

As you may know, I host the A11y Rules Podcast and its offshoot, the A11y Rule Soundbites. And I provide transcripts with every show, at the time of publication. Transcripts are expensive to generate if you use human transcriptionists (note, this is not a comment on the value of their work!). There is a lot of talk about using automated transcription services. Recently, the folks from Otter.ai have been pushing for me to give their service another go. And so I did.

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People, transcripts, and money

I am annoyed when people with disabilities or organizations working in the disability and/or accessibility field produce work that isn’t accessible. I’ll even admit to feeling upset about it. This happens more often than one might think. And these problems aren’t new. 15 years ago, I wrote “Disability community? What disability community?” for the Ragged Edge magazine. I already was pointing out issues of how some people in one disability group treat people in other disability groups.

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The costs of public speaking

I often present about accessibility at tech conferences. I do it because I believe in sharing the expertise I have gained over two decades of working in that field. I also talk at conferences because I want to see a more inclusive web. But there are costs involved in doing that. I heard something recently that indicate some people don’t understand the impact, financial and otherwise, on the speaker and their families.

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CAPTCHA question triggers PTSD events

In a constant effort to fight spam, a lot of sites rely on some sort of CAPTCHAs. I recently came across a CAPTCHA on Twitter that asked a question that could trigger severe reactions from torture or abuse victims. This reminded me that I’d been meaning to explain how this particular question is an accessibility issue. Warning: This post may trigger bad reaction for torture or abuse victims.

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