Accessibility

ALA opposes e-book accessibility waiver petition

ALA and the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) renewed their opposition to a petition filed by the Coalition of E-book Manufacturers seeking a waiver from complying with disability legislation and regulation (specifically Sections 716 and 717 of the Communications Act as Enacted by the Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act of 2010). Amazon, Kobo, and Sony are the members ... Read More »

FCC makes “close call” in issuing e-reader waiver

To the disappointment of the American Library Association and a range of advocates for people with disabilities, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has granted a one-year waiver to the E-reader Coalition–Amazon, Sony and Kobo–to the Commission’s rules for Access to Advanced Communications and Services (ACS) for People with Disabilities. The Coalition argued that their e-readers were made for the sole ... Read More »

Could we have a splash of color? Two primary themes of another Dark Gray Suit Meeting on Copyright

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is an agency of the Department of Commerce. So it is no surprise that the USPTO-sponsored public meeting on the Department’s “green paper” (pdf)–“Copyright Policy, Creativity and Innovation in the Digital Economy” was primarily about the market for digital goods. The all-day meeting was organized around six topics that the Commerce Department’s ... Read More »

Intellectual property [sic] – it’s not about property

I really cannot fathom how anyone would say that the blind are thieves when accessible copies of books are not even available for purchase. Dr. Marc Maurer of the National Federation of the Blind and others remind us: people with disabilities do not want to be treated like second class citizens, expecting special handouts and giveaways. They want to purchase books just like everyone else, but accessible books are not available for sale. This is called “market failure.” In this case, authors or their publishers do not want to invest resources to satisfy a small market. It would not be in their economic interest to do so because they would not recoup costs. Market failure is a signal that an exception to copyright is necessary to fairly meet the information needs of the public. Read More »

Who Knew? Print disabled people read!!

ALA’s Office for Information Technology Policy (OITP) submitted comments to the FCC in response to a petition from the E-reader Coalition Petition of Class Waiver of Commission’s rules for Access to Advanced Communications and Services (ACS) for People with Disabilities. The E-reader Coalition–Amazon, Sony and Kobo– assert that their e-readers were manufactured for the sole purpose of reading text, therefore ... Read More »