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Resource: Filing Captioning Complaints with Video Program Distributors

Although the FCC has recently improved their Help Center with a more simplified look and improved user experience, this is not your only avenue for filing captioning complaints. Since content producers are required to submit their certificate of closed captioning compliance with the airing station, the FCC will often be the middle-man for these complaints, forwarding them to the station or cable provider of which the complaint originated. It is advised to initially contact your video program distributor (VPD) within 60 days of the error if you are looking for an immediate response. If the program has not been rectified within 30 days of your complaint, you should file the complaint with the FCC.

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Closed Captioning of Internet Video Clips

In September of 2012, the FCC announced the obligation for closed captioning on all full-length Internet video programming that previously broadcast on television in the United States with captions. In accordance to further rulings, multiple deadlines are imminent in relation to “Internet video clips,” as well as timelines for the presence of captions on videos once repurposed for the Internet. Continue reading

Department of Transportation Orders Closed Captioning in Airports


In September of 2011, the U.S. Department of Transportation issued a notice of proposed rule making in Docket OST 2011-0182 titled, “Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability in Programs or Activities Receiving Federal Financial Assistance (U.S. Airports).” The DOT issued this final rule to amend section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, which requires accessibility in airport terminal facilities. Continue reading

A Brief Introduction of the Chinese Language

Think about what you know about the English language. Alphabet letters combine to form words. Words represent different parts of speech (such as nouns, verbs, and adjectives). To convey an idea or thought, we string words together to form sentences, paying attention to grammar, style, and punctuation. Because we understand pronunciation and phonetics, we can read other languages that use the Latin alphabet even if we do not understand the meaning of the words. However, the Chinese language functions in an entirely different way. Chinese is a conceptual language. It relies on written characters (not letters and words) to express ideas and general concepts. Continue reading

Broadcast Leader Elements

Television stations will provide detailed instructions of their broadcast requirements for producers to follow prior to submitting their program. However, before exploring the technical specifications of the bit rate, codec, wrapper, GOP structure, etc. you’ll need to make sure you add your broadcast leader elements to your timeline. Although the requirement varies from station to station (and is sometimes absent), we have established a common layout of how the leader elements should be formatted. Continue reading

Case Study: FCC Challenges Video Editors to Make Room for Caption Placement

Due to the updated FCC guidelines and standards regarding the quality of captioning, video editors face challenges when it comes to graphic placement during their programs, particularly text-heavy programming such as infomercials.

The new law states the following: Captioning shall be view-able and shall not block other important visual content on the screen, including, but not limited to, character faces, featured text (e.g., weather or other news updates, graphics and credits), and other information that is essential to understanding a program’s content when the closed captioning feature is activated.

In order to avoid potentially getting their show rejected by TV stations, editors have had to work hard and be extra creative so they can allow space for closed captions to be displayed without conflicting with any important visual content. Continue reading

Guest Blog: Closed Captioning for Church Online

The following blog was written by one of our clients, Simon Roberts, from Rock Church San Diego. It originally appeared on his blog at

Since the Rock Church San Diego launched Closed Captioning at the 10am livestream recently, I’ve had several inquiries into how we went about adding this essential feature.

I figured the best way to answer this is simply write about it. So, in what is hopefully the first of many posts regarding church technology projects, let’s begin.

According to the U.S Department of Health and Human Services: Approximately 17 percent (36 million) of American adults report some degree of hearing loss. Source: Deaf Statistics for USA Continue reading

Voice Dubbing Services at International TV Stations

Have you hit the jackpot with inexpensive or free voice over services at the TV station your program is airing on abroad? When you contact your local voice dubbing provider requesting a quote for voice dubbing services, are you overwhelmed by the rates?

Well don’t be, because it does not reflect the same two services. Continue reading

We love L.A.! …and the Feeling is Mutual

Aberdeen Broadcast Services is honored to confidently proclaim that we have secured our position as a trusted and reliable vendor of captioning and digital file delivery throughout the #2 Designated Market Area in the United States, according to recent estimates by The Nielsen Company. Our AberFast Digital File Delivery is now in place to deliver broadcast-ready long form programming to all of the major stations in Los Angeles market including KCBS (CBS), KNBC (NBC), KTLA (CW), KABC (ABC), and KTTV (FOX).

To what do we attribute our success? Continue reading

The Importance of 4:3 Center-cut Safe

The introduction of high definition television super-sized our television sets from the square look of the 4:3 aspect ratio, to the widescreen 16:9 ratio. If you acquire your content in HD, the natural instinct when shooting HD is to use the entire 16:9 frame for composing your shots.

Not so fast.

Currently, most televisions networks in US markets do broadcast in HD. However, since there are still a significant amount of 4:3 television sets still in use, every one of these HD stations also simultaneously feed SD signals of their of their content to their SD viewers. In fact, the majority of the US viewership is actually watching in SD. This means your cinematic 16:9 content is being down-converted to the 4:3 screen ratio for SD viewers. Continue reading