FCC rules define new quality standards for caption accuracy, synchronicity, completeness, and placement. These rules not only apply to broadcast content, but also to video clips shown online – every rendition of every stream in every format. Broadcast affiliates and cable channels with the top market shares must also begin providing video description for at least 50 hours of content per quarter. For large broadcast networks providing a combination of network feeds and online content via a variety of outlets, compliance can mean analyzing millions of files each month. Even for smaller broadcasters, the burden of maintaining compliance with manual monitoring is onerous at best.
Nexidia Comply™ provides an accurate, scalable and affordable automation solution that empowers video program owners and distributors to verify that captions and video description across all of their outputs meet new FCC regulations. With the Align module, they can go one step further and re-time live-captioned content for reuse in IP and rebroadcast use cases. In combination, these products help ensure regulatory compliance and aid content owners and distributors in providing the best viewing experience for the end-user.
Closed Caption Verification
Nexidia Comply compares captions to the spoken words in the audio, verifying that closed captions are not only present, but that they also match the audio. The application then determines the level of caption coverage by comparing the intersection of voice activity and aligned caption segments. Verification is based on configurable parameters outlining acceptable levels of caption accuracy, caption timing, and caption coverage. The results of the caption verification test are a pass/fail result and a report with the details and time codes of problem areas. Nexidia Comply is available in two versions, Basic and Advanced. Basic checks for significant problems with synchronization, completeness, and accuracy and indicates timecoded error segments. Nexidia Comply Advanced exposes additional configuration parameters, allowing the user to dial-in acceptance criteria, differentiate between live and pre-produced captions, and receive more specific timecoded error information.
In order to verify video description, Nexidia Comply analyzes both the program audio track and the video description track, identifying all segments in which the description track has dialogue not present on the program audio track. The test returns a pass/fail result indicating whether the prescribed level of coverage was attained and a detailed report showing the timecodes where video description was detected.
Nexidia Comply can also verify that the language in each audio track matches the intended language independent of any metadata. Having set up a predefined test profile indicating the possible and expected languages for each track, each track is analyzed, verifying the primary language spoken on that track. Given a reasonable amount of audible dialogue, language verification is extremely accurate, ensuring the correct language is always on the correct track. Nexidia Comply also supports caption and subtitle language verification, allowing for identification of the primary language of a file.
In combination with the Align Module, Nexidia Comply can automate the repair of caption synchronization by comparing the timecodes of the words spoken in the audio track to the timecodes in the caption file. Align adjusts the timecodes in the caption file so that the captions are properly timed with the spoken words, returning a new, accurately-timed caption file that’s ready for distribution. Users can select a clip for automated distribution and Nexidia Comply will automatically validate and properly align the associated caption file. This improves the user experience and perceived quality of the overall product.
Nexidia’s caption verification and caption alignment features are based on Nexidia’s patented phonetic process that utilizes phonemes instead of words to enable Comply to properly verify and align proper names, slang, and individual accents. Nexidia Comply currently supports more than twenty languages for the closed caption tests, and adding support for new languages is a straightforward process. Nexidia Comply currently supports fifteen languages for audio language verification and with partner assistance new languages can usually be added in less than thirty days. For a full list of supported languages, click here.
Nexidia Comply includes a XML-based REST API, making integration into any workflow quick and easy. Comply is integrated with several compliance recording solutions, including Volicon Observer and other leading monitoring and compliance platforms. These integrations combine Nexidia results with the results of other compliance operations, providing users an integrated compliance and reporting solution. Regardless of the solution used to trigger jobs in Comply, Nexidia results are always available using Comply’s API or web interface and can be saved as standalone reports.
Nexidia Comply can scale to meet nearly any need. Depending on media format, jobs can run upwards of 30-times real time per CPU core, meaning even modest hardware is capable of analyzing hundreds of channels.