Fan helps get closed-captioning at CenturyLink

Fan helps get closed-captioning at CenturyLink

Fan helps get closed-captioning at CenturyLink

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by ABBEY GIBB / KING 5 News

kgw.com

Posted on January 19, 2014 at 1:06 PM

SEATTLE -- There is nothing quite like being in the crowd for a Seahawks game.  The sights and sounds of the 12th man.

"The Clink" is considered the loudest venue in the NFL.  So loud, the place shakes.  So earth-shaking it actually measures with a seismograph.

But what if you couldn't hear any of it?  For die hard hearing-impared fans, even with hearing aids, that's how it's always been.

"It filters to a certain point but at some point it's almost impossible," said long-time season ticket holder Dean Olson.

But thanks to him, that's about to change.

"I would leave little suggestions in the customer service box, saying can you guys get captions?"

Back in 2012 he and his group The Washington State Communication Access Project (Wash-Cap). got the team to offer blackberries to hearing-impared fans.  On the screen was supposed to be closed captioning but Olson said it rarely worked.

"They were jamming. They didn't have enough bandwidth because everyone was taking pictures before and during the game."

In May of 2012, after years of persistence and perseverance, a dream was born.  For the first time starting this season, closed captioning now runs along portions of the electronic ticker.

And with that success under his belt, Olsen is now taking on the Mariners who will have the same closed captioning at the start of next season.

"I'm just like amazed, this is great. I actually helped make this happen and they did it."

And he did it for all the future fans who won't have to know it any other way.

Olson is not stopping there.  Now he's working to provide captioning for movie theaters and playhouses around Seattle and trying to get other NFL teams to follow suit.

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