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TV Content Focus Group 2 (Sports) - Major sports events

The purpose of this focus group was to explore blind and partially sighted people’s perspectives on watching live sports on TV and how they would like to see coverage made accessible and enjoyable. The session also explored blind and partially sighted people’s preferences for how audio description should be implemented on live sports coverage.

All participants agreed that live sports broadcasts need audio description to make them accessible and enjoyable. Some participants highlighted that they have stopped watching broadcasts that are not audio described, as there would be little point due to not knowing what is happening. There was a consensus that some sports would benefit from audio description more than others. For instance, fast paced sports such as football and more visual sports such as gymnastics, synchronised swimming and martial arts were suggested as sports that would particularly benefit from being described. Participants also suggested that the costumes could be described to add an extra layer of detail. Some participants indicated that for events such as the marathon, due to its long duration, commentators would have more time to provide description of the action. One participant felt that not enough detail is provided at the start of a race when the athletes are all bunched up and at times felt lost due to the lack of description.