User perspectives on developing technology-assisted access services in public broadcasting


  • Maarit Koponen University of Helsinki
  • Tiina Tuominen Yleisradio Oy
  • Maija Hirvonen Tampere University and University of Helsinki
  • Kaisa Vitikainen Yleisradio Oy
  • Liisa Tiittula University of Helsinki


The growing demand for accessible media content in the Creative Industries and increased pressure to produce more content at lower costs has led the industry to look for technological support for creating and managing audiovisual content. In order to design technology-assisted solutions and services that are truly accessible, it is crucial to center the knowledge and experience of the intended users - both the consumers and the professionals involved in producing the content and services. This article explores potential technological solutions for audiovisual media access services in the context of public service television broadcasting. We introduce an ongoing research project taking a user-centered approach, and present work carried out on automatic and semi-automatic methods involving intralingual and interlingual subtitling, and description of visual content. Through experiments and interviews, we examine how different potential user groups respond to technological solutions at differing levels of maturity. We discuss conceptualizations of quality, trust, and accessibility emerging in the interviews, and chart the differences and similarities between different stakeholders. The article demonstrates how the diverse user perspectives can inform research and development, and enhance our understanding of the role of technology in promoting media accessibility.