Tuesday 3 March 2009

Three cheers for um… the BBC

Do you remember as a child being told by your mum that if you couldn’t say anything nice about something, you shouldn’t say anything at all? This was one of my Ma’s mantras when I was growing up and I do still try and be good and abide by her rule.

However, regular readers will know that I don’t always say nice things about people/companies who I think are failing deaf and hard of hearing people in some way, but usually it’s not without good reason. So I have added a sub clause to this old bit of advice stating exactly that.

But, I also believe that if you moan about something that subsequently changes, then credit should be given – and that’s what I am going to do today.

A while ago I posted my excitement about QI finally having subtitles on the BBC’s iPlayer. With the manicness of work, I hadn’t been back to check the development of this, until today, when I discovered that everything I clicked on was subtitled!


This really is amazing – all that moaning, emails to the BBC and now look – subtitles. Now, don’t get me wrong – I am not taking the credit for this new development. I am hoping that it’s just a natural progression in the BBC making its content more accessible for deaf and hard of hearing people – but isn’t it great that I don’t have to moan about them anymore?

It gives me hope that in the long run, the battle to get more subtitled theatre and cinema will be won and I won’t have to learn things off by heart in order to follow them.

Take Friday, when I went to see Les Miserables in the West End. I first saw this when I was 17 and must confess, I fell in love with the music more than the plot – partly because I could follow the melodies but couldn’t hear the words. So I bought the music and learnt the words. As a result, when I saw it on Friday, the story unfolded in my head as much as it did on stage. I was almost in danger of singing along!


However, I still can’t wait for the day that all the drama unfolds on stage instead. Here’s hoping…

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