Broadway

Notice Board

Tue 17 Jul

UK Cinema Association launches subtitling challenge fund

The UK Cinema Association, in partnership with the charity Action on Hearing Loss, has this week launched a Technology Challenge Fund intended to stimulate new innovations in the delivery of subtitling for people with hearing loss.

There are 11 million people with hearing loss across the UK, or around one in six of the population, a percentage which is expected to rise to one in five - or 15.6 million people - by 2035.

Over the last decade, the UK cinema sector has worked hard to meet the needs of deaf and hearing-impaired audiences, increasing the number of subtitled - or 'open caption' - screenings significantly. There are now over 1.500 subtitled screenings in UK cinemas every week.

While the industry believes that subtitled screenings offer the most accessible and inclusive way to meet the needs of deaf and hearing-impaired customers, the reluctance of the wider audience to attend such screenings means that providing more of these presents significant economic challenges,

Over the last few years, the Association has tracked the development of a number of 'closed caption' systems where subtitles are only seen by the individual audience member, via either a personal screen or a pair of specially-adapted glasses.

While some progress has been made in this regard, there has as yet been little significant take-up of these devices.

In an attempt to stimulate fresh thinking in this area, the Association - in partnership with the charity Action on Hearing Loss - has this week launched a Technology Challenge Fund with the aim of supporting the development of an inclusive technological solution that will allow people with hearing loss to enjoy a more integrated cinema experience.

In doing so, it wishes to cast the net of potential partners further than just the cinema sector to involve those working in the wider technology and academic sectors.

The fund is open to all individuals and companies - both UK and international based - who can demonstrate their capabilities in this field by completing the application form to attend the launch workshop.


More details on how to apply can be found here: https://www.cinemauk.org.uk/tcf-apply/.

The closing deadline for applications is Friday 28 September.

More information on the timelines and funding can be found on the Fund website or to request an information pack, please email the UK Cinema Association at info@cinemauk.org.uk