Victoria García-Prieto e-mail(Login required)

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Victoria García-Prieto e-mail(Login required)


The fundamental right to freedom of expression is inextricably linked to the right of all people to equal access to information. This right is enshrined in documents, such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Spanish Constitution itself, which are basic pillars of a democratic society. With regard to television, accessibility is a particularly important issue due to its public service nature and its relevance as a factor of social inclusion. At present, however, the public service remit is the exclusive reserve of state television, while at the private channels economic interests prevail. It is precisely because of this factor that the focus here is placed on private television, with the aim of plotting a path that explains, in a contextualized manner, the origin, evolution, and current situation of accessibility of Spanish private television for people with disabilities. To this end, an analysis has been performed on the introduction of subtitles, audio descriptions, and sign language by the two private channels with the highest audience ratings and the longest track record in Spain, namely, Antena 3 and Telecinco. Thus, this study shows that the Audiovisual Communication Act (7/2010) has marked a turning point in the evolution of accessibility. Following the enactment of this legislation, there has been a genuine increase in accessible content, but the current state of affairs is still far from the universal access demanded by people with disabilities and the basic principles of democracy.


Subtitling, audio description, sign language, functional diversity, audiovisual communication act


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