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VITAC Provides Closed Captioning for NBC's Coverage of The Beijing Olympic Games


NEW YORK, Aug. 8 /PRNewswire/ -- VITAC, the nation's leading provider of accessible media services, has been selected to provide English and Spanish captioning during NBC's coverage of the 2008 Beijing Olympics, including this evening's high-profile Opening Ceremony.

VITAC will caption all Olympic programming on NBC, MSNBC, CNBC, USA, Oxygen, Universal HD and Telemundo. The captions, created in real-time by specially trained stenographers who transcribe audio at up to 240 words per minute, will enhance the viewing experience of the one in ten Americans who experience some form of hearing loss.

VITAC's team of captioners and production coordinators have been preparing for the opening ceremony for months. Captioners must be prepared to spell the names of competitors from 205 countries and extensive references to Chinese culture and language.

"When we prepare for an event like the Olympic Games, each of our captioners will add as many as 7,500 proper names to computer dictionaries," said Patricia A. Prozzi, President of VITAC. "Our captioners must stroke every word precisely to achieve verbatim representation of all that is broadcast on the NBC networks -- a task requiring research, dedication and training. We are proud of the exceptional quality of our captions for this, our seventh, Olympics."

"NBC has selected VITAC as our captioning partner and we are committed to making the Beijing Olympic Games accessible to all viewers," said Randy Raddatz, Vice President, NBC Olympics. "The Olympics are one of the most popular television events and we are pleased that through our partnership with VITAC over 30 million deaf and hard-of-hearing viewers will also be able to enjoy the excitement."

About NBC Olympics

NBC, "America's Olympic Network," owns the exclusive U.S. media rights to the Olympic Games, television's most powerful property, through 2012, which includes Beijing in 2008, Vancouver in 2010 and London in 2012. From August 8-24, 2008 NBC Universal will present an unprecedented 3,600 hours of coverage, highlighted by NBC in primetime with live swimming, gymnastics and beach volleyball. In August 2004, 203 million viewers watched as the networks of NBC Universal--NBC, MSNBC, CNBC, USA, Bravo, Telemundo, and NBC's HD affiliates--offered a then record 1,210 hours of Olympic coverage from Athens. For additional information, go to Merging news, results and schedules with extensive video coverage and an unmatched depth of unique story telling content, will be the Olympic fan's hub for every aspect of the 2008 Beijing Games experience-from the most comprehensive TV schedules to learning how to connect to mobile, gaming, VOD and other digital destinations. will provide approximately 2,200 hours of live event competition where users can choose from up to 20 concurrent streams encompassing 25 Olympic sports. In addition, the site will offer more than 3,000 hours of on-demand access to full-event replays and extensive highlights, including daily recaps of key events, best-of montages, commentator analysis and athlete-specific clips.


VITAC Corporation, a Merrill Communications Company, is the nation's leading provider of closed captioning and other accessible media services, with offices in Los Angeles, CA, Washington, DC, and headquarters in Pittsburgh, PA. VITAC provides closed captioning for broadcast networks, cable TV, home video / DVD, teleconferences and Internet programs worldwide. Among the company's largest clients are NBC Universal, BBC America, BET, BET J, CBS, CBS Studios, CNN, Headline News, C-SPAN, Discovery Networks, FOX, FSN, FSN Regional Networks, Fox Television Studios, Mark Burnett Productions, MTV Networks, Sony Pictures Entertainment, truTV, Turner Broadcasting, Warner Bros. Television, The Weather Channel and the Federal Government.

Merrill Corporation, founded in 1968 and headquartered in St. Paul, MN, is a leading provider of outsourcing solutions for complex business communication and information management.


Heather York, VITAC

703-807-2763 or

SOURCE VITAC Corporation

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