WJZ adds captioning to evening news

December 22, 1993

WJZ (Channel 13) will add captioning to its evening newscasts starting tonight in an effort to make the shows more accessible to the 323,000 members of Maryland's deaf and hard of hearing community, General Manager Marcellus Alexander says.

Today and tomorrow's 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. broadcasts will be open captioned. Friday, the station will begin real-time closed captioning, which requires a special TV set or decoding device to be received.

"Everyone watching a WJZ newscast today and tomorrow will see the captioned words at the bottom of their TV screen and get an idea of what real-time closed captioning entails for the deaf and hard of hearing community," Alexander says.

The difference between real-time closed captioning and what i in place in Baltimore is that the current systems allow only what is scripted ahead of time to be captioned.

Real-time closed captioning -- using computerized telephone technology -- allows for last-minute script changes, breaking news stories, live remote broadcasts, as well as weather and sports, which often are not scripted in time for captioning in advance.

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