Video/animations - audio descriptions

"Like a narrator telling a story, audio description (AD) is an additional commentary describing body language, expressions and movements. AD gives you information about the things you might not be able to see, meaning that you can keep up with the action. Audio description is available on TV, DVDs, in the cinema, in theatres, in sports venues and online." RNIB.

The checks used for Web2Access sites are very basic and it should be noted they are not ideal. Offering alternatives for multimedia such as animations or rich video films with action (but perhaps no explanatory dialogue) is not easy to check quickly and a wide variety of scenes can rarely be adequately explained with text descriptions. Videos often have to be watched all the way through to make judgements about the quality of the explanatory notes.


There are really no options but to check manually for alternative representations for multimedia content.  Alternative text for images can be checked automatically when they are included within the code as has been described under Image ALT Attributes.

Videos, animations and Flash content etc require audio descriptions or audio and text descriptions.  The transcript or text description is usually seen below the video or as part of the content. There are times when an audio file is supplied separately and in addition to the text.



This technique may be used to test the following section of best practice.

Document Section Heading
WCAG 2.1 1.2.3 Audio Description or Media Alternative (Prerecorded) More Info