Find Posts By Topic

Seattle Channel adds closed captioning to City Council meetings

Seattle Channel is pleased to announce the addition of real-time captioning to our live cable TV broadcasts of Seattle City Council meetings, including committee and special meetings. Closed-captioning officially launched today. Captioned Council meetings will also be archived for playback on the air, on our website and YouTube channel.

“Captioning adds to our mission to provide transparent and increased access to government, and it supports the City’s digital equity goals,” said Shannon Gee, Seattle Channel station manager.

Closed captioning will make the content of Council meetings accessible to more people, particularly to viewers who are deaf or hard-of-hearing. Captions also improve comprehension for some, especially second-language viewers.

VITAC, a national captioning company, was selected through a competitive process. It will transcribe the meetings remotely in real time.

Seattle City Councilmember Lisa Herbold, with the Seattle Commission for People with disAbilities, advocated for captioning Council meetings.

“Until now, hard-of-hearing individuals were essentially shut out of the conversation altogether because they could not hear the discussion as it was taking place,” said Councilmember Herbold in a news release announcing the addition of captioning issued by her office today. “Accessibility is an important part of our democracy. All viewers, regardless of their abilities, should be able to see or hear the interactions and conversations that occur in any public City Council meeting.”

Seattle Channel is available to cable television subscribers in Seattle on channel 21 on Comcast (321 HD) and Wave (721 HD) and on CenturyLink channel 8003 (8503 HD).