Hearing loss keeping you from the movies? A new regulation could change that.
Prior to the government shutdown, the Obama administration was close to completing a proposal that will require movie theatres to offer devices that display closed captioning and provide audio narration. This new regulation will ensure that those who are hearing impaired or blind can enjoy the movie theatre experience.
A certain percentage of the more than 40,000 theatres nationally could be affected by this proposal, which requires theatres offer headsets that provide a running commentary of visual action for the blind and glasses that display closed captioning, or a similar device, for those with hearing loss.
The National Association of Theatre Owners continues to oppose the ruling, arguing that about half of movie screens already offer this technology and a federal mandate will force small, rural and struggling theatres to close given the cost associated with the rule. The group argues that as theatres convert to digital cinema, the use of closed captioning and description technologies becomes easier and will continue to be put in place.
The White House has been reviewing the new regulations since June and is expected to make the new proposal public as soon as the shutdown is concluded.