“My vision is to make media accessible across all platforms, including broadcast, broadband, wireless and any future medium that comes along. Our audience wants to access media just like any other Canadian and it’s our mandate to deliver that.”
- David Errington, AMI President and CEO.
Accessible Media Inc. (AMI) is a not-for-profit multimedia organization serving more than five million Canadians who are blind, partially sighted, deaf, hard of hearing, mobility or print restricted. Operating three broadcast services, AMI-tv and AMI-audio in English and AMI-télé in French, AMI’s mission is to make accessible media for all Canadians. To learn more visit AMI.ca and AMItele.ca. Licensed by the CRTC, AMI services are part of the basic digital package of TV programming offered by all cable systems and satellite direct-to-home services.
From its inception as a reading service to the ground breaking media and social enterprise that it is today, the organization has evolved significantly throughout it’s more than 26 year history.
National Broadcast Reading Service (NBRS) was created and mandated to provide equal access to published news and information for all Canadians with vision restrictions.
NBRS was granted a licence from the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) to launch a radio reading service known as VoicePrint and operated as such until it officially became AMI-audio.
In 1995, Audio Vision Canada (AVC) was established. AVC was a pioneer in the production of described programming for movie and television productions
In 2008, the CRTC granted a license to the Accessible Channel (TACtv) to provide the world’s first and only television network to broadcast all programs with closed captioning and open described video.
In 2010, NBRS was officially rebranded as Accessible Media Inc. to better reflect the company’s expanded service offerings and more clearly communicate the organization’s goal to make all media accessible to all Canadians.
On January 30, 2012, TACtv was officially rebranded as AMI-tv. VoicePrint followed shortly thereafter and was rebranded as AMI-audio on March 5, 2012.
AMI-tv and AMI-audio licenses were renewed through 2018 and AMI was awarded a French television license.
In October, AMI launched the AMI-player, the first accessible online media player in North America.
In December, AMI-télé, Canada’s first French channel featuring open described video, launched.
In April, AMI redesigned and relaunched its AMI.ca and AMItele.ca websites.
The Accessibility Officer role was introduced to AMI in 2014 to further maintain and establish AMI as a leader in the field of media accessibility. Chris O’Brien, a seasoned IT professional and accessibility advocate, was appointed to the role in September 2016.