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Direct Video Calling (DVC) is one-to-one video communication provided by a call center to allow conversations to occur between two callers using American Sign Language (ASL).

Case Study on DVC Implementation

Thousands of people who are deaf, hard of hearing, deaf-blind or have speech disabilities use Video Relay Services (VRS) to place video calls in ASL every day. To communicate, they rely on interpreters to voice their words to hearing callers.

To improve interactions with these callers, the FCC’s Disability Rights Office implemented a Direct Video Calling solution: The “ASL Consumer Support Line” launched in June 2014—the first of its kind in the federal government. Communicating directly now makes each call faster, and has nearly eliminated incoming relay calls to the FCC’s main toll-free number.

After creating a DVC program:

Average call length dropped 42%; Number of deaf callers increased 533%

Why Should You Adopt A Direct Video Calling Program?

  • Improved Communications
    Direct video calling improves privacy and efficiency, which increases productivity.
  • Career Opportunities
    Employing native ASL-users to handle customer service video calls expands hiring opportunities for people with disabilities.
  • Secure
    Use high-speed broadband and your own internal networks without compromising security or facing potential barriers created by firewalls.
  • The Americans with Disabilities Act
    Further your organization’s commitment to the ADA.
  • Cost Savings
    Replacing interpreted calls with direct communication saves money. Increasing the effectiveness of calls and minimizing the need for repeat calls due to miscommunication and/or misunderstanding reduces call times and increases agent productivity.

How Do I Set Up a Direct Video Calling Program?

Set up Diagram of Direct Video Calling Program

Fortunately, the technology needed to implement a Direct Video Calling system is easily obtainable, affordable and also easy to set up.

As part of the Accessible Communications for Everyone (ACE) initiative, the Federal Communications Commission brought together telecommunications and video relay services users, software developers, engineers, researchers and community members to develop ACE Direct. ACE Direct is open source video software that can be used by consumer-facing call centers in government organizations and private sector companies, which allows callers who use American Sign Language to directly interact with customer service representatives.

Visit ACE Direct to learn how easy it is to implement Direct Video Calling.

Get ACE Direct Today for Free

Get ACE Direct Today for Free

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DVC Updates

Resources, Blogs, Releases, Events, Videos and More



April 11, 2018 - Robert McConnell & David Schmidt | Team Leads, FCC Direct Video Calling Initiative
With ‘Direct Video Calling’, FCC Helps Open Phone Lines to ASL Users | CitiesSpeak

April 14, 2015 - Tom Wheeler | FCC Chairman
Direct Video Communication: Access for People who are Deaf, Hard of Hearing and Speech Disabled in an IP World

June 11, 2014 - Greg Hlibok | Chief, Disability Rights Office
FCC Launches Direct Video Communication Access to Help Consumers Who Are Deaf and Hard of Hearing


January 28, 2022 - Public Notice
New Direct Video Calling Entity Granted Access to TRS Numbering Directory

June 11, 2021 - Public Notice
Communication Service for the Deaf, Inc. Granted Access to TRS Numbering Directory

May 15, 2019 - Report and Order
FCC Acts to Improve Video Relay Service and Expand Options for Users

March 23, 2017 - Report and Order, Notice of Inquiry, Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, and Order
FCC Seeks Comments on Proposed Direct Video Calling Customer Support Services Rules

January 18, 2017 - Order and Declaratory Ruling
VTC Secure, LLC granted waiver to access TRS Numbering Directory for Direct Video Calling

September 30, 2016 - Public Notice
FCC To Hold Direct Video Calling Showcase

July 18, 2016 - Public Notice
WCB and CGB Seek Comment on VTCSecure LLC Petition

November 18, 2015 - Public Notice
Release Of Auto Call Routing (ACR) "Cookbook" Enabling DVC

August 20, 2015 - News Release
FCC Plans Open Source Accessibility Platform

June 10, 2014 - News Release
FCC Adds American Sign Language Consumer Support Line for Videophone

June 10, 2014 - News Release
Gallaudet hosts leaders from Small Business Administration, FCC to Announce New Videophone Service for Deaf Entrepreneurs


November 4, 2016
Direct Video Calling Showcase & Demonstration of ACE Direct Platform



Become a leader in accessible communication! Contact us at for more information about ACE Direct.


Note: Direct video calling does NOT replace the need for telecommunications relay services or and video relay services. Some people who are deaf, hard of hearing, deaf blind or speech- disabled who do not know American Sign Language may still need to communicate through a text-based relay system or through a speech- to-speech relay service, which uses specially trained operators to facilitate communication on a telephone call.

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