National Association of the Deaf

NAD, NFL, & CBS Rally to Improve the Super Bowl Experience

The National Association of the Deaf (NAD), the National Football League (NFL), and CBS Television Network -- the network airing Super Bowl XLVII on Sunday, February 3, 2013 -- have once again teamed up to improve access to the most watched game of the year.

CBS has made all the preparations to ensure that the Super Bowl and all in-game national commercials are captioned. CBS, a longtime leader in this area, was the first television network to caption all of its network promotions and is once again leading the way by captioning all local commercials shown in markets served by CBS owned stations, a total of 14 markets which is a feat never before accomplished. In markets where the local CBS station is not owned by CBS viewers might experience gaps in captioning during local commercials.

Additionally, for those viewers wanting to watch the signing of the National Anthem and America the Beautiful prior to the kick-off, will offer a camera angle titled “Fan Choice” whereby actor John Maucere will perform these iconic songs in American Sign Language.

The NAD applauds CBS for elevating the bar for captioning the Super Bowl XLVII experience, and appreciates the dedicated efforts of the NFL for working with us every year to improve upon the year before.

With millions of people tuning in to watch the Harbaugh brothers lead the Ravens and the 49ers, tomorrow’s topic of conversation will not just be about the game, but also the latest creative ads. The Super Bowl has been accessible through captioning for the game portion for many years, but only with the commitment of the NFL have the commercials and promotions become largely accessible in recent years. Thanks to the dedicated efforts of the NFL, the national commercials and promotions in the last three Super Bowls have all been captioned after starting out with only 20% prior to these efforts.

We urge everyone to join the deaf and hard of hearing community in the annual ritual of counting the number of captioned commercials and promotions during the Super Bowl. The NAD is interested in learning about any technical issues that may prevent captions from appearing on television sets. Your captioning experience is important to us.

Captioning is an inexpensive way to ensure that the entire televised Super Bowl experience is fully accessible to all. At least 48 million deaf and hard of hearing people in the United States rely on captioning to have the same experience, and many others such as those watching the game in public places such as bars and gyms also benefit from the captions.

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National Association of the Deaf | 8630 Fenton Street, Suite 820, Silver Spring, MD 20910-3819