That’s according to a settlement agreement between Hulu and advocacy groups, who sued Los Angeles-based Hulu. Advocacy groups had sued Hulu last year in an effort to force the subscription streaming service to provide an audio track that helps people who are blind or visually impaired enjoy TV shows and movies.
Disability Rights Advocates, which brought the case, says Hulu will provide audio descriptions of scenes and facial expressions, where possible. Hulu will also update its website and software applications to ensure people can use screen readers.
The federal lawsuit filed in Boston in November of last year accused Hulu of violating the Americans with Disabilities Act. The groups said Hulu refused to do so despite repeated requests from advocates and blind customers.
“They want to enjoy Hulu like everyone else in the country,” said Meredith Weaver, an attorney with Disability Rights Advocates, which filed the lawsuit on behalf of the American Council of the Blind, Bay State Council of the Blind and a blind Massachusetts couple.
Most major movie companies already provide audio description tracks, and audio exists for many TV shows and movies that are available on Hulu.
Netflix in 2015 started offering an audio track for the show “Daredevil” that features a blind superhero after fans complained. In a settlement reached with the American Council of the Blind and others, Netflix agreed to expand its audio description offering and make its website and mobile apps accessible for people who rely on screen reading software.
The Hulu competitor says it now provides audio description for most its original titles and some other TV shows and movies.
Hulu officials didn’t immediately respond to emails seeking comment.