Democratic FCC Commissioner Michael Copps gave
a shout out to broadcasters on Thursday who are currently providing video description
service for their programming.
That came as the FCC voted Wednesday to implement the
Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act, signed into
law last fall. Among that bills mandates are that large-market broadcasters and
large MVPDs begin delivering those descriptions and that those MPVDs
pass through broadcast descriptions (with an exemption for live
Video descriptions allow the blind to become "audio
viewers" as it were via descriptions of scenes that supplement dialog.
Although the FCC's video description rules were thrown out
by the courts more than a decade ago some, some broadcasters and cable
operators continued the practice. "I do want to commend CBS, FOX,
PBS, TCM and TNT
for providing this important service in the interim on their own accord,"
said Copps Thursday.