In pursuit of its ongoing commitment to creating a 100% accessible environment, Verizon Media has planned a series of new initiatives to foster equitable access to entertainment and support disability advocacy across Yahoo and its other properties, the company announced today at its Yahoo Build It Forward event.
“Our mission at Yahoo is to be the most inclusive scaled digital platform to connect our customers to their passions,” said Jo Lambert, head of consumer at Verizon Media, whose portfolio also includes digital brands TechCrunch, Autoblog and Engadget.
With an increasing reliance on digital media, as well as a growing public awareness around trusted journalism, Verizon Media wants to “make sure that we’re serving these trusted sources of information and news for everybody,” including those who are blind, deaf and speech-impaired, she added. “There’s even more emphasis on making sure we can deliver the right information to our users everywhere.”
Starting April 1, each and every user-facing video on Yahoo—including original content and third-party partner media—will feature closed captioning in a boost to the brand’s hearing-impaired users. Verizon Media’s closed-caption technology will also be extended to its reserved and programmatic ad offerings for full cross-platform accessibility.
Calling it “a stake in the ground,” Lambert said the company’s universal closed captioning feature will be rolled out next week across all Verizon Media’s properties around the world. The text itself will be created using a combination of speech recognition software and “hundreds of human caption editors” who are dedicated to “accuracy and quality,” she adds. The company is captioning thousands of videos per day.