FCC Requires Closed Captioning Of IP-Delivered Video Clips
Federal Communications Commission
News Media Information 202 / 418-0500
445 12th Street, S.W.
Washington, D. C. 20554
This is an unofficial announcement of Commission action. Release of the full text of a Commission order constitutes official action.
See MCI v. FCC. 515 F 2d 385 (D.C. Circ 1974).
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
NEWS MEDIA CONTACT:
July 11, 2014
Janice Wise (202) 418-8165
FCC MOVES TO ENSURE ONLINE VIDEO CLIPS ARE
ACCESSIBLE TO AMERICANS WHO ARE DEAF OR HARD OF HEARING
New Rules Will Require Captioning of Certain Online Video Clips Beginning in 2016
Washington, D.C. – The Federal Communications Commission today approved new rules that will
require closed captioning of video clips that are posted online. The new rules further the purpose of the
Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act of 2010 (CVAA) by helping to
ensure equal access to all forms of programming by individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing when
they watch video content online.
Specifically, the rules extend the Commission’s IP closed captioning rules adopted in 2012, which cover
full-length videos online, to video clips if the original programming was shown on television in the
United States with captions. The new rules apply to video programming distributors that air
programming – including broadcasters and cable and satellite distributors— on television and then post
clips of that programming on their own website or via their own mobile app.
The new rules do not extend
to third party websites or apps.
Compliance deadlines vary based on the type of video clip. Specifically, a deadline of:
January 1, 2016, will apply to “straight lift” clips, which contain a single excerpt of a captioned
television program with the same video and audio that was presented on television;
January 1, 2017, will apply to “montages,” which occur when a single file contains multiple
straight lift clips; and
July 1, 2017, will apply to video clips of live and near-live television programming, such as news
or sporting events. Distributors will have a grace period of 12 hours after the associated live
video programming was shown on television and eight hours after the associated near-live video
programming was shown on television before the clip must be captioned online in order to give
distributors flexibility to post time-sensitive clips online without delay.
Finally, the requirements do not apply to video clips that are in the distributor’s online library before the
applicable compliance deadline because compliance for this category of video clips is considered to be
The Commission also issued a Second Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that asks for comment on
four related issues, including:
Application of the IP closed captioning rules to the provision of video clips by third party
distributors not subject to today’s Order;
Whether to decrease or eliminate over time the grace periods that apply to video clips of live and
near-live programming, as technological advancements facilitate the prompt online posting of
such clips with captions;
Application of the IP closed captioning requirements to “mash-ups,” which are files that contain a
combination of one or more video clips from captioned programming that has been shown on
television along with other content (such as online-only content) that has not been shown on
television with captions; and
Application of the IP closed captioning rules to “advance” video clips, which are those that are
added to the distributor’s online library after the applicable compliance deadline but before the
video programming is shown on television with captions, and which then remain online.
Action by the Commission July 11, 2014, by Report and Order and Second Further Notice of Proposed
Rulemaking (FCC 14-97).
Chairman Wheeler, Commissioners Clyburn and Rosenworcel issuing
Commissioner Pai concurring and issuing statement.
approving in part and concurring in part and issuing statement.
For further information, contact Diana Sokolow (202-418-2120; firstname.lastname@example.org). Press contact:
Janice Wise (202-418-8165; email@example.com).
For news and information about the FCC, please visit: www.fcc.gov