Transcripts of Podcasts

Having recently purchased a new home and been involved in the rather time consuming process of moving I have to admit to being somewhat remiss in my duties as a podcaster and blogger.  I only recently saw this link to my blog from Ron Graham’s blog Access Ability regarding transcripts for podcasts. My apologies Ron and thank you for the link and positive note.

Transcripts for podcasts is an essential point of access, particularly with regard to individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing. It is not inherently difficult and to NOT have available a transcript IS inherently exclusive and discriminatory. I would love to say that including a transcript was my own idea because my area of expertise is disability policy. But in fact, the inspiration for including a transcript came from a non-disability podcast: Mignon Fogarty’s Grammar Girl Podcast. I have been a long-time fan of Mignon’s podcasts and noticed that every one of them came with a transcript.

While I can understand that long interviews may be difficult, for prepared comments and discussion it is much easier. Having a transcript available isn’t just about accessibility and rights (although those are crucially important) but simply good business sense. It increases a podcast’s exposure and audience.

Transcript availability for podcasts is something we should not only provide ourselves but encourage others to provide as well. People with disabilities are all in this together. Thanks Ron for reminding us of that.