Frequently Asked

What is CART?

CART stands for Communication Access Realtime Translation. CART is a service that converts speech to instantaneous realtime text in order to provide accessibility to those who cannot understand the speaker.  CART can be provided onsite or remotely.  Caption First provides only word-for-word CART.  Everything that is said is captured.

Is captioning different than CART?

Technically, CART and captioning are different but many people use these terms interchangeably because the process of creating the text is similar for both services.  Captioning requires merging text with video and may be done in real time or later (sometimes referred to as offline or post-production captioning).  CART requires no video and is always done in real time.  Additional hardware and software are required to do captioning.

Who benefits from CART and captioning?

Individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing compose the largest segment of the population to use CART and captioning.  The National Institute on Deafness and Communicative Disorders (NIDCD) estimates that 17% of the U.S. population (36 million) has a hearing loss. NIDCD also states that age-related loss affects 18% of American adults ages 45-64 years of age, while 30% of individuals ages 65-74 years old and 47% of individuals 75 years old and older experience hearing loss.  Only one out of five people who could benefit from a hearing aid actually wears one.

In addition, research has shown anybody who has difficulty understanding a speaker, such as individuals whose native language is not English and individuals who have auditory processing challenges, find CART and captioning very helpful in enhancing their comprehension of spoken English.

Does Caption First provide CART with Stenographers?

At Caption First, we utilize only stenography to provide CART because we believe it is the best tool available to deliver the highest quality CART services.

Are your CART and captioning services secure and confidential?

Yes, all of Caption First’s services are secure and confidential. Caption First’s captioners each sign confidentiality agreements and non-disclosure agreements. In all of our years of service, we have never had an external breach of security. Additional security measures are available for those clients who need the highest available level of security.  Ask for more information about our Enhanced Security program.

Who is Caption First?

Caption First is an industry leader in providing realtime captioning and CART services, nationally and internationally, since 1989. Our goal is to provide equal access for everyone, breaking down communication barriers that presently exist for people who are deaf or hard of hearing, as well as those whose native language is not English.

What is your level of quality?

At Caption First, CART and captioning are word-for-word services. Our goal is to capture 100% of the information and translate that via stenography at 98% or better accuracy. In addition, our writers provide clues to environmental sounds (like ringing phones and laughter) as well as speaker identification so the consumer has ambient awareness.

Are your writers certified?

Yes. All of Caption First’s writers are certified by the National Court Reporters Association (NCRA). Our writers have at least one of the following certifications:

  • Certified Realtime Reporter
  • Certified Broadcast Captioner
  • Certified CART Provider

Do CART and captioning writers follow a Code of Ethics?

Yes. Writers certified by the National Court Reporters Association follow their organization’s Code of Professional Ethics and Guidelines for Professional Practice, which includes confidentiality and security guidelines.

What is remote CART?

When the CART consumer and the CART provider are not located in the same place, remote CART is the solution.  The words are placed on a secure website that is available to the consumer over the Internet so they can read the words in real time.  The audio is sent to the remote writer via the phone or over the Internet.

How many people can use CART at a time?

Whether onsite or remote, there is practically no limit to how many people can watch the text as it is created.  However, when privacy is important, access can be limited to only authorized consumers.

In what situations are CART and captioning beneficial?

Put simply, CART and captioning are beneficial in any situation where an individual needs access to visual communication of the spoken word. Such situations are endless; a few examples include job interviews, meetings at work, teleconferences, webinars, religious settings, conferences/conventions, and theatres and arenas.

How much does it cost?

Please contact us for details.  We would appreciate an opportunity to create a specialized solution that meets your situation and budgetary limits.