Random Thoughts and Musings by moi

Musings by a feisty, opinionated Deaf gal who wants nothing but the best for her community and her people

dimanche 25 juin 2006

No more CMP?

We were all at the opening ceremonies for the evaluation and undergoing the obligatory introductions and speeches. Amidst the gaiety of what felt like a reunion, a thunderbolt struck. The Captioned Media Program has: 1. had its budget slashed into half, and 2. been ordered to provide video description services for the blind. The CMP has had a 5-year contract with the U.S. Department of Education, and it is up this year. When they re-applied, they were told the above. In effect, this means the budget for captioning has been slashed to a quarter of what they’ve had for five years. This has the potential to change everything for the company.

Possible impacts:
1. CMP (which is under NAD) has to become an expert in something totally different.
2. It could change the entire evaluation process.
3. Possibly instead of 300 new titles per year, only 75 titles may be released per year.
4. No more nationwide biennial evaluations maybe.
5. Only 10% of educational media is currently voluntarily captioned. Now with even less titles made available through CMP... it hurts deaf children.

They’re trying to make a bid to the U.S. Department of Education to allow the American Federation for the Blind to develop standards for video descriptions, and let THEM pretty much do it, and CMP just oversees it. But will the Department of Ed accept this proposal? Dunno.

By the way, video descriptions are voice-overs for actions that are visible but would not be obvious without seeing them. For example, suppose you see a dishy blonde walking up to a cupboard, opening it, taking a glass out, and closing the cupboard. One might hear the patter of feet, the clink of the glass hitting the counter, and the gentle slam of the door closing. But what the heck just happened?? Video descriptions would fill this gap.

Gad. We don’t have enough captioning as it is, and what there is is crap more and more often these days. This was talked about today - roll-up vs pop-up captions. Often sponsors aren’t willing to pay for pop-up captions. Why are CC for programs prepped weeks in advance so often crappy? No excuse, etc.

UPDATE: We found out that the woman who runs the evaluation program is in effect being fired. Her position was written out of the new grant. We are not going to conduct field evaluations on the tapes we weren’t able to get to this time, nor will we conduct field evals in the fall at home. It also looks like all the libraries and the warehouse in South Carolina will close if things don’t change. There is also a chance that there will be no more mailing out of tapes because it is too expensive. Things are really looking grim at this point. Time to trot out those letters to our representatives and senators and to the head of the Department of Education!!! (Links to help you find your representatives' contact info are embedded.) Contact NAD and insist that they fight to halt this, since CMP is a subsidary of NAD. We should try to fight this. Better to try and fail than not to try at all.

((UPDATE 2/28/07 - CMP IS shutting its doors for good on March 30th. For more info, check here.))

((UPDATE 3/1/07 - CMP IS NOT shutting down for good. Go here for more details.))


  • At 01:38, Anonymous Anonyme said…

    That pretty much explains why we have been geting a lot of inquiries to our captioning services lately as we do it at a fraction of the cost using our volunteer training program.

    Richard Roehm

  • At 03:41, Blogger Jay said…

    CMP was so wonderful for me during my childhood. Watching captioned films with family every week or two. However, I hardly use their service anymore nowadays. Technology have advanced so much.

  • At 05:03, Blogger David A. Martin said…

    Are you serious? They cannot shut down! I use it all the time! Tell me how I can help save the program?

  • At 07:43, Anonymous dianrez said…

    Perhaps the time is right to close the CMP program due to the growth of the DVD and VHS movies, much of it already captioned for the deaf and interpreted for the blind.

    Instead, it would be better to urge our lawmakers to beef up the requirements for all new media to be captioned. All TV programs likewise.


Enregistrer un commentaire

<< Home