GTV9 Melbourne has breached its licensing condition after failing to provide an adequate captioning service an episode of Two and a Half Men last September.
A complaint made to media watchdog, the Australian Communications and Media Authority, found the captions actually broadcast were not adequately synchronised with the visual component. Delays in excess of six seconds meant much of the show was inaccessible for deaf and hearing impaired viewers.
Under the Broadcasting Services Act 1992, commercial television broadcasting licensees must provide a captioning service for all television programs broadcast during prime viewing hours (6pm to 10.30pm) and all news and current affairs programs.
GTV9 has agreed to address issues relating to captioning as follows:
-assign a staff member to manage the captioning of late arriving programs;
– for late arriving programs required to be live captioned (including Two and a Half Men), follow specific procedures, such as sourcing any original USA caption file;
-ensure that late arriving programs found by either the ACMA or Nine not to be captioned are re-captioned before any subsequent re-broadcast; and
-for a period of 18 months, provide the ACMA with monthly compliance reports and quarterly reports prepared by an independent auditor to identify any systemic captioning problems.