Game On!

by: David Titmus

VITAC Provides Captions for the Largest Sporting Events of the New Year

The New England Patriots and the Philadelphia Eagles will take the field in Minneapolis, Minnesota’s U.S. Bank Stadium this Sunday (February 4) for Super Bowl LII on NBC.

The Super Bowl traditionally is among the most-viewed television broadcasts of the year, with last year’s big game drawing an average of more than 111 million viewers, ranking it the fifth most-watched TV event in history. And just as the players, coaches, and trainers have been preparing over the past week for the big game, so, too, has VITAC and our talented captioners, coordinators, schedulers, and support teams.

Super Bowl 52 logoVITAC once again will provide captions for the NFL championship game. Our realtime captioners are prepping and researching all the information they expect analysts and commentators to discuss during the game as well as in pregame and postgame shows. Production coordinators and sports supervisors will test systems and set-ups in advance of kickoff and monitor caption feeds during play, while support teams will be on the ready should any problems arise.

The Super Bowl, though, is just one of the major sporting events that VITAC will caption (or has captioned) in the first two months of the year.

The new year kicked off with our captioning of the National Hockey League’s Winter Classic game on January 1. The game, held at New York’s Citi Field between the New York Rangers and Buffalo Sabres, drew more than 2.4 million viewers. VITAC captioned the fast-paced play-by-play as well as the pregame and postgame shows and commentary.

NHL Winter Classic LogoWe also provided captions for Citi Field itself. VITAC’s Event Center Solutions initiative enabled those attending the hockey showcase to view captioned PA system announcements via the scoreboard, ribbon board, and in-stadium CCTV systems. These included play descriptions, scoring, and player information; referee and penalty announcements; in-game promotions, contests, and entertainment; advertising and commercials; emergency messaging; and end-of-game announcements, among other things.

And VITAC once again will provide closed captioning services for NBC’s production of the XXIII Olympic Winter Games, which start next week in PyeongChang, South Korea.

PyeongChang 2018 Olympic LogoVITAC’s live closed captioning begins on Friday, February 9, with the Opening Ceremony and includes captioning for all Olympic programming on NBC, NBCSN, CNBC, and the USA Network. In all, VITAC will bring captions to more than 630 hours of broadcast coverage across NBC and its affiliated television platforms and more than 750 hours of webcast video.

The PyeongChang Games marks the 12th Olympics captioned by VITAC.

Be sure to check out next week’s blog for more on our work in making the Winter Games accessible.