BAI publishes updated Access Rules

The Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI) has today (28.1.19) announced the publication of its updated BAI Access Rules, designed to increase the understanding and enjoyment of television by people who are deaf, hard of hearing, blind or partially sighted and those who are hard of hearing and partially sighted. The Access Rules apply to broadcasters within the jurisdiction of Ireland and set out obligations on broadcasters in respect of the provision of subtitling, Irish Sign Language and audio description.

The 2019 Rules include revised subtitling targets for a number of broadcasting services and, for the first time, the introduction of audio description and Irish Sign Language targets for Virgin Media One. Other notable provisions of the revised Rules include the setting of specific subtitling targets for broadcasters during peak time viewing and the setting of incremental annual increases for each of the relevant services in respect of Irish Sign Language targets.

Commenting on the publication of the revised rules, Michael O’Keeffe, BAI Chief Executive, said:” Since first introduced in 2005, the BAI Access Rules have contributed to the increased availability of quality audio-visual content for Irish audiences who avail of access/assistive services. I am confident that the targets set out in the Rules today will further add to the range and sources of accessible content on Irish television services.”

The revised Rules have been informed by significant engagement with broadcasters, user groups and interested parties, and I would like to thank all those who participated in the development process, including those who responded to the public consultation. We look forward to continued engagement with the key stakeholders to support the achievement of targets over the lifetime of the Rules.”

The Rules come into immediate effect and set out targets for the period 2019 – 2023.

A copy of the BAI Access Rules (pdf) can be found here.

A copy of the BAI Access Rules (word) can be found here.

Watch an ISL/Subtitled video of the rules.

Listen to an audio version of the rules.

A Braille copy of the rules is available upon request.

OCS Consulting Report: Stakeholder consultation to inform revised set of Access Rules