Accessibility statement – Bi-Fi Festival Virtual Event

We hope you are looking forward to our BiFi virtual event as much as we are! Below are some further details around how you can access the event. 

The platforms

The event will stream on Twitch as well as on Facebook. Both platforms have a live chat function, so you can interact and take part in the action. Facebook is accessible to screen readers, Twitch is not.

BSL interpretation

BSL interpretation will be in place for the entire event apart from the DJ sets, provided by Max Marchewicz. During the DJ sets where BSL interpretation is not available, speech will be subtitled.

Audio description

Audio description is not available throughout the live event, we will be providing audio description for parts of the recorded versions of the stream which will be available after the event.

Content notes

In order to highlight any potentially triggering or upsetting content, content notes and trigger warnings will be included at the beginning of each panel, and at the beginning of some of the cabaret performances.

Financial access

The event is completely free to attend, and all contributors have been paid for their time.

Event content

You will be able to go through  all content after the event has streamed on both Twitch and Facebook, this includes any messages left in the chat stream on the respective platforms.

External risk

We do not tolerate prejudice, discrimination, or abuse of anyone on the basis of their gender identity or gender presentation, sexuality, race, ethnicity, class, visible or invisible disability, nationality, religious or non-religious beliefs, language abilities, age, or body shape.

In this vein, the chat spaces on Twitch and Facebook will be moderated by BPUK volunteers. They will work hard to monitor, flag, and remove any examples of this. But unfortunately, as this is a public event, we cannot guarantee that the chat space will be completely free from trolls.

Rest assured, we will endeavour to make this as safe and joyous a space as possible.

Lessons learned

We apologise wholeheartedly for the access barriers that Twitch poses to people using screen readers, and we thank those who pointed this out to us. We should have been aware of this when deciding how this event would be streamed. Thanks to your vital feedback, the event will simultaneously be streamed on Facebook. Whilst not a perfect solution, we hope it addresses the immediate barrier to participation for blind and visually impaired people.

When we committed ourselves to delivering this event, we did so on the back of an 80% drop in funding to our organisation as a whole due to the Covid-19 crisis. We could only commit existing, diminished funds to our event budget.

Fortunately, in the final weeks before the event, we were able to partner with several generous corporate sponsors to fund this event. This gave us the means to meet access-related costs, and we are glad to confirm BSL interpretation for the majority of the event and audio description for the recording of the event which will be available at a later date. We recognise that not offering audio description during the live event is far from perfect and apologise to those in our community who will not be able to fully enjoy the day.

We completely recognise that we could have done more to ensure equal access to our event. We are committed to learning more about how we can improve access to our future virtual events by addressing this gap in knowledge and lived experience, attempting to raise the necessary funds to cover the costs, and implementing the necessary changes wherever possible.