Techdirt writes a lot about the problems with DRM, and how inefficient and inconvenient it is. But for millions of visually-impaired people, those “inconveniences” represent something much deeper, and much worse.

Somebody who has started writing eloquently about this issue is Rupert Goodwins. He is one of the UK’s most respected technology journalists and also, sadly, is losing his sight.

As he points out in a powerful new piece, things ought to be getting better for the visually impaired in the Internet age:…

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Source: Techdirt


  1. One solution, particularly for devices such as Kindles, Nooks and iPads, would be to enable text-to-speech for those who can present documentation from a physician that they need it. It’d then be enabled for all ebooks.

    That’s how the stickers for disabled parking is handled and for that it works quite well. The makers of those gadgets do so much else remotely, doing it for text-to-speech shouldn’t be hard.

  2. One excellent point Goodwins raises, which I had not even thought about, was the difficulty involved for him in installing the reader software itself. It’s fine to say well, Adobe is easy to use to get the file onto your chosen device with a point and click so what’s the problem, but that presupposes you have the software installed in the first place! The font in the book itself may be adjustable, but the font in the EULA for the software install isn’t, nor is the font on the dialog boxes you need to click to install the program. The more steps there are before you have the book in a usable state, the more potential hurdles there are for someone in his position. I must admit, I had never even given a moment’s thought to the font size of the dialog boxes! Food for thought.

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