By Elliot Yates

Submissions have been called for on how to improve captioning media in NZ. A select inquiry on captioning has been set up by a Government Administration Committee, which is chaired by the Hon. Ruth Dyson.

If you want to have your say, please submit your response by Thursday 28 July to the committee.

Amongst the movers on this inquiry are the D/deaf communities, The Green Party and The Captioning Working Group comprised of organisations such as Deaf Aotearoa, National Federation for the Deaf and the Hearing Association of NZ.

The main political party advocating this course of action is The Green Party. Its current captioning advocacy is in line with a policy announcement made in August 2014 regarding disability policy. In this announcement it launched a policy for 100% captioning of TV in addition to its existing disability policy which are amongst the stronger of the current political parties in Parliament for this topic.

All this cooperation was and is done in order to obtain stronger captioning in New Zealand media. This select committee is one of the steps to attain this goal of complete captioning, which is often attained in other countries in the world at a higher or complete percentage of the dominant media.

The inquiry concerns itself with captioning and its funding. This inquiry has called for New Zealanders who requires captioning to submit their feelings and ideas for captioning media in NZ.

The topics the inquiry has to cover are:

  • International comparisons of captioning access
  • Issues around royalties and intellectual property
  • Legislation and regulation in terms of export of films
  • Public education/attitude towards captioning
  • Responsibility for the provision of captioning (e.g. comparison with the Relay Service, an obligation under the Telecommunications provisions for Telecommunications companies to provide)
  • Requirements under existing legislation and regulation in relation to advertising
  • Potential for Captioning Watchdog (as in the United Kingdom),
  • Other related matters which may arise in the process of the inquiry by select committee.

Click Here: to submit an inquiry on the Parliament website.

Instructions for submission online on the Parliament website:

  • At the bottom of the webpage is the title “Verification”
  • Below it is the CAPTCHA question that asks you to touch the picture of an object
  • Once you have done that, click on the blue button that says “Make an online submission”
  • You now see “Online Submission Form”.
  • The form’s first paragraph will point you to further links for how to submit or format if you are still unsure how to submit your form at this point.

Alternatively, The Green Party has put a form for submission online Click Here for you to fill in and send to the select inquiry online.

The form itself has a series of questions meant to simplify the process of submission to the select committee and aiding with creation of submission.

Happy advocacy!