Captioning and Subtitling Services

What do captioners, court reporters, and Edgar A. Brown have in common?

Edgar A Brown Court Stenographer

Marker and Bust in Edgar A Brown Building on SC State House Grounds

A Little SC History for Court Reporting & Captioning Week

Brown was commissioned as a court stenographer for the South Carolina Second Judicial Circuit in 1908.  Brown was an Old South democrat with political aspirations.  In 1920, he was elected to the SC House of Representatives and was Speaker of the House between 1925 and 1926.  Brown ran for a SC Senate seat and won, starting his long and successful senatorial career.  From 1942 to 1972, he served as the President Pro Tempore of the Senate and Chairman of Senate Finance, making him one of the most powerful men in South Carolina politics.  He was allegedly a leader of the secret “Barnwell Ring.” There stands a marker in Barnwell entitled, “The Barnwell Ring.”  It reads in part, “Loved, Feared, and Fought! Was it real or fiction?”  We might never know.<!–more–>

What about Brown’s connection to modern-day broadcast captioners?

Brown cared deeply for education as evidenced by his support of Clemson University.  He served on the Clemson Board of Trustees as a member, life trustee, and president of the board.  His passion sparked South Carolina Educational Television, a public television network.  Brown’s “most shining star” was a model for ETV stations throughout the nation.

Today, the Public Broadcasting System is served by real-time captioners who create live captions for ETV viewers watching live programming.  Broadcast captioners are professionals with honed stenographic skills from the very court-reporting industry from which Brown himself started.  We think he’d be especially impressed with the work of CART providers, those stenographers who write realtime onsite or remotely through the Internet for hard-of-hearing or deaf persons requesting accommodations granted under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) or for student who have it written into their Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) plans.

If you’d like to learn more about captioning careers, click here.


New Federal Captioning Guidelines – Beginning January 18, 2018, Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 was “refreshed” to require that information and communication technology in the public sector, especially web content, be accessible to all.  Section 508 addresses not only federal agencies but is widely applied to state and local entities such as colleges and universities that receive federal funding.  If you represent such an agency, are you compliant with new federal captioning guidelines?


According to GCN: Technology, Tools and Tactics for Public Sector IT, Section 508 deals with electronic services including “web page content, PDF documents, and audio and video content,”  specifying requirements to ensure that all web content is accessible to people with disabilities, such as deaf or hard-of-hearing individuals.  These guidelines, which were ordered in January of 2017, are meant to keep pace with rapid advances in technology, such as the rising use of Internet video and live webcasts across devices.

New Federal Captioning Guidelines and Requirements

To achieve its goals, Section 508 incorporates the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0.  WCAG 2.0 defines how to make web content more accessible to people with disabilities, including those who are deaf or hard of hearing.  Of particular interest to federal agencies using video web content, Success Criterion 1.2.2 of WCAG 2.0 states, “Captions are provided for all prerecorded audio content in synchronized media.”  Examples of prerecorded synchronized media might include video tutorials or artistic performances.  Success Criterion 1.2.4 states, “Captions are provided for all live audio content in synchronized media,” and examples include live news webcasts or realtime artistic performances.  In both cases, captions should provide dialogue AND non-speech information such as sound effects and other significant audio.

State and Local Captioning Requirements

Although New Federal Captioning Guidelines Section 508 places requirements on federal agencies, Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act may also require colleges and universities receiving federal funds to adhere to Section 508.  According to the EDUCAUSE Review, institutions of higher education are now facing class-action lawsuits over the issue of accessible websites.  Based on complaints from advocacy groups such as the National Association of the Deaf and the U.S. Department of Education, “Higher education should now be on notice: Anyone with an Internet connection can now file a complaint or civil lawsuit, not just students with disabilities.”

CompuScripts Can Help with New Federal Captioning Guidelines

If you represent a federal agency or an institution of higher learning which produces Internet video content, CompuScripts can bring you into compliance with Section 508 captioning requirements.  CompuScripts offers both realtime and postproduction captioning services.  Additionally, CompuScripts is endorsed by the Described and Captioned Media Program, which is administered by the National Association of the Deaf and funded by the U.S. Department of Education.   Contact CompuScripts Captioning to help your agency or school comply with Section 508.

As we usher in a new year, CompuScripts Captioning would like to update our closed captioning clients on changes in regulations regarding Internet video. Internet video programming distributors should already be acquainted with The Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act of 2010, or CVAA. First implemented in 2012, the CVAA mandates the captions of most Internet video programming. Compliance with the CVAA is monitored by the Federal Communications Commission.

Since March 2012, prerecorded, unedited video programs has required captions when shown for the first time on the Internet. Live programming, near-live programming, and prerecorded, edited programming has required Internet captions since 2013.

In 2014, video programming distributors had 45 days to caption for the Internet previously televised captioned programming. Beginning March 30, 2015, that deadline shrinks to 30 days; for example, a captioned program that is televised on March 30, 2015, must appear with closed captions when shown on the Internet by April 29, 2015. Beginning in 2016, a captioned televised program must appear with captions when shown on the Internet within 15 days to remain compliant.

2015 FCC Mandates

New Year Mandates

CompuScripts Captioning has been working with our clients to ensure compliance with the CVAA since
its implementation in 2012. Previous blogs have addressed Internet captioning regulations and
FCC deadline changes, and future blogs will address changes in the required quality of captions. In addition to Internet video, CompuScripts Captioning offers closed captioning and subtitling services for broadcast and DVD media. Our services are customized for your particular workflow and deliverables, as well as your budget. For assistance on how all of your video programming might meet FCC compliance deadlines, or to request a quote, contact our Caption Coordinator, Stacey Wilson, at or 1.888.849.9698.

In memory of a great author and poet lost in 2014, we share this quote from Maya Angelou.

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

May we all be resolved to treat everything that has breath with a little more kindness, a little more understanding, and a little more respect.


Books make great holiday gifts for kids, and numerous reports link leisure reading to increased vocabulary, school success, and heightened empathy. But when you’re shopping for a child who is deaf or hard of hearing, what are the best choices?

Kids like reading about characters whom they resemble, and in their diversity statement, the Children’s Book Council states, “All children deserve to see themselves in story.” So with that in mind, we’d like to introduce you to books which feature deaf or hard-of-hearing characters in primary roles. And since everyone loves a good story, consider these for the hearing children on your list as well!

El Deafo, by Cece Bell. This graphic memoir tells the story of a profoundly deaf child whose new hearing aid makes her feel like a superhero, hence the book’s title.   Kirkus Review calls this “a humorous and touching graphic memoir about finding friendship and growing up deaf.” Ages 8 and up.

Leading Ladies, by Marlee Matlin and Doog Cooney. This book, number three in the “Deaf Child Crossing” series, tells the story of Megan Merrill, a deaf fourth-grader who is auditioning for the part of Dorothy in a musical version of The Wizard of Oz. Will she get the part, or will it go to her best friend, Julie? Kirkus Review says, “This rare glimpse into the life of a child growing up deaf is an invaluable contribution to juvenile fiction.” Ages 8-10.

Silence in the Wild: A Summer in Maine, by Dale C. Jellison.   Jake Graham, a deaf boy of twelve, is adjusting to his first summer at camp when he finds himself alone in the wilderness without benefit of hearing aids. This coming of age story, published in 2014, is not yet reviewed. Ages 11-13.

The Flying Fingers Club Mystery Series, by Jean F. Andrews.   Matt, who is deaf, teaches his friend Donald to sign, and together they form the “Flying Fingers” club to solve mysteries. Titles include “The Flying Fingers Club,” “Secret in the Dorm Attic,” and “Mystery of the Totems.”   Booklist says, “The underlying theme, that two boys can have a close friendship regardless of one having a disability, comes through as Donald learns sign language and paves the way for other classmates to befriend hearing-impaired Matt.” Ages 8-11

To spread additional cheer amongst deaf and hard-of-hearing children, visit the web site of the Described and Captioned Media Program for their holiday list of accessible media. Titles include “The Gift of the Magi,” “Seven Candles for Kwanzaa,” and “In the Month of Kislev.”

Christmas ElfCompuScripts Captioning offers effective communication to assist you with compliance of the Americans with Disabilities Act by offering closed captioning and subtitling services to public and private venues.  CompuScripts Captioning is endorsed by the Described and Captioned Media Program, which is administered by the National Association of the Deaf and funded by the U. S. Department of Education.  Achieving DCMP “Approved Captioning Service Vendor” status is a prestigious honor in the captioning industry.  Of those who participate in the rigorous evaluation process to acquire Approved Vendor status, only half actually earn the distinction.  CompuScripts Captioning also enjoys the distinction of being a YouTube Ready captioning vendor through DCMP.

Sports Captioning Interview

As the University of South Carolina heads towards its last home football game of the 2014 season, we’d like to introduce you to one of our most experienced captioners, Joniel. This is the second season of Gamecock football for which Joniel has provided stadium captioning. The addition of stadium captioning at Williams-Brice Stadium allows the deaf and hard-of-hearing community to enjoy the public address announcements, song lyrics, videos, halftime performances, and anything else that is heard over the P.A. during breaks in the action. Below, you’ll find Joniel’s thoughts on love (of sports), loss (of one of her favorite players), and the “magical” names on the Gamecock roster.

CompuScripts Captioning: How did you get into closed captioning?

Joniel: I got into closed captioning when, during my work as a deposition reporter, I was encouraged by my then-boss (who is a true sister of my heart) to embrace the discipline, purchase captioning software, and provide services for a new client of her firm that required captioning. This occurred during the mid-1990s.

CC: What types of programs have you captioned during your career?

Joniel: My initial focus was government: council meetings, school boards, commissions. It has expanded to financial calls, news programs, sports-centric programs, both games and recaps, educational, devotional, local entertainment, cooking, and local-interest programs. I caption high school and college football games.   I also use my captioning skills for onsite CART (Communication Access Realtime Translation) presented to either individual participants who need text of a meeting or to a large audience. I have captioned the gamut of programs!

CC: You mentioned sports-centric programming. Are you a sports fan generally? What are your favorite teams?

Joniel: I am a sports fan. My particular interest is the Cleveland Indians because I caption their games often, and I admit to having a private connection: When I was a teenager, my sister’s husband was an outfielder on one of the Cleveland Indians’ farm teams. I avidly follow their progress each year, whether I caption their games or not. My 15-year-old grandson is quite a good little league player. I also follow the Seattle Mariners and Seahawks, as well as the Cleveland Browns and, of course, the USC Gamecocks. I have become a football fan mostly because I am now involved in captioning the Gamecocks’ home football games, and that has led me to follow and appreciate other teams.

CC: What are the greatest challenges in stadium captioning?

Joniel: The challenges relate mostly to not having a “view” of what the audience is seeing. I communicate with [CompuScripts’ owner] Debbie Dusseljee via text message, along with the control person onsite.

CC: What do you enjoy most about stadium captioning?

Joniel: I enjoy the football games I stadium caption because I feel more like a spectator than a captioner. The actual game-time captioning is less stressful because the audio I receive is a synopsis of the action rather than a play-by-play version, as is the case for network sports captioning. However, my pregame and halftime responsibilities include assembly, proofreading, and presenting a detailed script of the ceremonial events which occur during each game.

CC:   Have you developed any favorite Gamecock players while captioning?

Joniel: Since I have captioned the Gamecocks for two years, I’ve developed favorites for each year. I thought Jadeveon Clowney (of course!) was a HERO last year. Sadly, he’s graduated. This year Sharrod Golightly and Pharoh Cooper are my favorites, mostly because I think their names are magical. I have no way of “seeing” other than through “hearing.”

CC: What have you learned about the University of South Carolina and Gamecock football while providing the stadium captioning?

Joniel: I have learned that the tradition of USC Gamecocks football is as close to a spiritual belief as I’ve ever witnessed. The Gamecock Crow, 2001 Space Odyssey, Sandstorm, the Mighty Sound of the Southeast, as well as the student-athletes all factor into the tradition, and the spectacle becomes complete and absorbing. It is welcoming and nurturing as well.

Joniel's Captioning Suite

Joniel’s Captioning Suite and Stenomachine

Is your sports franchise interested in bringing captioning to your stadium’s deaf and hard-of-hearing audience? CompuScripts Captioning has been providing stadium captioning since 2011. We’d love for you to contact us about providing stadium captioning to your team’s fans!

For over two years, CompuScripts Captioning’s blog has offered readers information on the deaf and hard-of-hearing community and its access to video content. We’ve shared articles on technology, advocacy, and legislation.   This week, we just want to share a good movie!

Film Recommendation

You spent days looking for exactly the right place. It had to be close to a Starbucks. It had to be near a dry cleaner. You endured the overly chatty real estate agent who drove like a grandma in a car that smelled funny. You finally found your dream home, and then the chaos begins. You can’t find your favorite pair of shoes because the boxes aren’t unpacked. There’s no television because the cable guy can’t come till the end of the week. There’s really nothing worse than moving to a new home.

Unless you have to walk there.

Unless that home is halfway across the world.

First-world problems get there come-uppance in “The Good Lie,” a new film by Philippe Falardeau. This fictionalized story is based on the real-life experiences of the Lost Boys, children who fled war-torn Sudan and walked thousands of miles to refugee camps in Kenya before being resettled in new homes in the United States. At a time when contemporary entertainment lauds antiheroes like Walter White and Frank Underwood, “The Good Lie” shows us characters who risk everything for a better life, as well as those who help them along the way.

“We applaud the filmmakers, the cast and everyone involved in “The Good Lie,” which gives the children of Sudan a voice to tell their story,” said Caryl M. Stern, President and CEO of the U.S. Fund for the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund. “While thousands of people are watching the film across the country, UNICEF and its partners will continue to help save and protect the lives of vulnerable children in South Sudan today. We urgently need the American public’s attention and support in aiding these children and their families.”

“The Good Lie,” stars Arnold Oceng, Ger Duany, Emmanuel Jal, and Kuoth Wiel, and features Reese Witherspoon and Corey Stoll. Rated PG-13, “The Good Lie” opened October 3, 2014.



“The Good Lie.” Web. 9 October 2014.

Weinreich, Regina. “Children Lost and Found: ‘The Good Lie’ Premieres.” HuffPost Entertainment, The Huffington Post. 9 October 2014. Web. 9 October 2014.

Press Release. “The Good Lie” Filmmakers and The U.S. Fund For UNICEF Collaboration Set To Raise Awareness And Funds For Humanitarian Crisis.” UNICEF United States Fund. 30 September 2014. Web. 9 October 2014.