Stand: 30.03.2015 15:00 Uhr

Audio description guidelines

The nine regional public broadcasters cooperating within ARD, ORF, SRF, ZDF as well as Deutsche Hörfilm gGmbH, Hörfilm e.V. and audioskript agreed on a number of audio description principles for the German-speaking world.

Preamble:

Audio description is the insertion of an additional narration into the soundtrack of a film in order to translate its images into acoustic information. The soundtrack constitutes the most valuable means for blind and partially sighted people to gain access to a film. It provides non-sighted viewers with a density of information that largely eludes sighted viewers. That is why it is desirable to involve skilled blind and visually impaired authors in preparing audio descriptions.

Analysing the content of a film and its formal aspects provides the basis for a good audio description. Taking this visual and acoustic analysis into account, four steps are necessary to decide on the narrative additions to the original soundtrack:

  • choosing which visual information to describe
  • its nature and its extent
  • its placement
  • its integration into the soundtrack

The aim of audio description is to make films as accessible to the blind and visually impaired as they are to sighted viewers. At the same time, though, audio description needs to respect and to preserve the unique qualities of film as a form of art.

An audio description should always be reviewed by skilled editors.

The reviewers need to adhere to these minimum requirements:

 

  • The description needs to clarify who is doing what where and when for every scene relevant to the plot.
  • Descriptions should interfere as little as possible with a film. They should therefore appear in-between dialogues but still in sync with the plot.

 

Weitere Informationen
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