As podcasting becomes more popular and more mainstream, accessibility will be a requirement. If your podcast isn’t ADA compliant, it could become a costly issue for you. In late 2021, a lawsuit was filed against SiriusXm because their podcasts did not include transcripts. If you’re interested in the case details, you can check them out here.
Transcripts are an excellent idea for more than just ADA compliance. They also help make your podcast discoverable and increase your SEO. There are some services and tools that can help make creating transcripts easy for you. For now, I want to jump in to why transcripts will help you be ADA compliant.
What is ADA Compliance?
For those of you thinking what is ADA? It’s the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) its a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all areas of public life, including jobs, schools, transportation, and all places that are open to the general public. In regard to podcast accessibility, this will require podcasts to meet the ADA requirement which includes transcripts for each episode.
Accessibility issues are essential in any form of media, but podcast accessibility can make a difference in someone’s life. It is possible to listen to podcasts while multitasking, something that isn’t quickly done with many other forms of media. To people with visual disabilities, podcasts are a great way to gather information and stay up-to-date on topics they enjoy or find essential. People experiencing low vision often have difficulty reading standard newsprint or websites with small font sizes, making podcast transcripts very beneficial.
Podcast transcripts are put together in a unique way making it easy for people to read. This is especially true when there is a podcast guest, and the transcript lists several different people talking or when names and dates are given during podcast segments. Podcasts that have transcripts also open the door to people that are hearing impaired to enjoy the content.