WebAIM: Real-time Captioning

Real-time Captioning

Article Contents

  • The Real-time Dilemma
  • Audio description
  • Captions
  • Generating Real-time Text
  • Stenography/Real-time transcription
  • Voice recognition
  • Delivery of Real-time Captions
  • Conclusion
  • The Real-time Dilemma

    The web delivers real-time content in many forms, from video conferencing, to VoIP, to live video streaming. Accessibility standards require that equivalent, synchronized alternatives be provided for real-time audio and visual content.

    Audio description

    The alternative to visual content in standard web multimedia often takes the form of audio descriptions, where visual content in multimedia is described via audio—often a separate audio track with a narration of visual content. Because a separate descriptive audio track is very difficult to incorporate into real-time web broadcasts, ensure that any important visual content is natively described in the audio. For example, if there is a person speaking on the video, they should audibly describe any additional visual content that is displayed on screen.


    The alternative to auditory content in standard web media is usually synchronized captions. Captions provide a textual equivalent of all audible information. The difficulties in generating real-time captions are:

  • Audio information must be converted into text in real time.
  • The text captions delivered to the end user must be synchronized with the audio.
  • Generating Real-time Text

    Because few touch-typists can keep pace with [...]

    Read article at webaim.org

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