Recommended Reading for December 17

Ria Andriani reads from a Braille board

* Sydney Morning Herald: Blind student tops HSC subject

Ria, a blind student who topped NSW in Indonesian Background Speakers, only migrated to Australia from its northern neighbour in 2007.

Unable to see since she was five, the student from Sydney’s Open High School has been proficient in Indonesian braille for many years.

But after moving to Australia, the inspirational teenager not only had to learn English but English braille.

[image source]

* Wired: Obama Sides With Blind in Copyright-Treaty Debate

The Obama administration announced Tuesday it supports loosening international copyright protections to enable cross-border distribution of special-format reading materials for the blind, a move that puts it at odds with nearly all of U.S. industry.

The government announced its support for the underlying principle of the WIPO Treaty for Sharing Accessible Formats of Copyrighted Works for Persons Who are Blind or Have other Reading Disabilities.

* Knowledge Ecology International: “Who on earth would oppose a treaty to facilitate access to information and knowledge to people with reading disabilities?”

This article outlines and excerpts a series of responses to the proposed copyright treaty, including the posturing by the MPAA [Motion Picture Association of America] and RIAA [Recording Industry Association of America], as well as more sensible responses from the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) and other groups.

* Outrage over handicapped parking signage

[posted purely so you can play Accessible-Parking Ableism Bingo! with the comments. How high can you score?]

9 thoughts on “Recommended Reading for December 17

  1. oh god, why did I read the comments on the last article?!

    On the other hand, I think I got bingo in five comments…

  2. On the other hand, two blocks of handicapped parking? Way to go Seattle!

    And why can’t a handicapped person have a hummer? Handicapped people can be just as (h2 loving adjective) as non-handicapped people.

  3. Wow. The comments for the King5 clip are particularly obnoxious. I struggle to understand how they could be against both the principle and the practice of the policy.

    I’d be prepared to accept a well reasoned argument that someone would not deliberately park in a space reserved “handicapped”, but the signage was unclear and at the time of day in which the spaces are “handicapped only” and there aren’t many people about to ask for advice. “State disabled parking permit ONLY between xxpm-xxam”, with a highlighted “ONLY” and placed at a level between the eye level of a wheelchair user and a non-wheelchair user would have been a better implementation.

  4. I knew there was a reason I try to have a “don’t read the comments” policy for mainstream news sources.

    Those comments were an astonishing combination of ableism and fatphobia.

  5. Sarah, I do too. Unless I’ve been warned and then I just can’t help it! (Usually it’s from a feminist site or a progressive site or this site, so I know I’m not the only one gaping at them in horror and if they attack me (or it feels that way), I know there are people who won’t back at the original site expressing the horror more eloquently than I ever could.)

  6. I like how apparently old people not only shouldn’t drive, but should never be driven anywhere, just stay home all day. Handicapped parking applies to passengers as well as drivers!

    God, some people are disgusting. Why do I ever read comments on news sites?

  7. im not sure what happened. i do have an active “Do Not Read Comments” rule. Maybe it wasnt posted clearly enough in my brain today.
    i especially loved this gem:

    “wildone_106 said on December 16, 2009 at 9:11 PM
    2 blocks seems a bit EXCESSIVE if you ask me, is there really that many handicapped drivers needing parking?? Seems to me the city is counting on regular good people making a mistake like this and getting a ticket. Shame on them eh? Shame on YOU. And by the way, I cant tell you how many times I’ve seen V8 Mustangs or H2 Hummers with Handicapped signs on them I guess some of them have no trouble putting their foot down on the freeway and still enjoying other privileges.”

    i mean really! How many disabled people can there be in a major metropolitan city anyways???
    And even if there are, why would they drive sports cars and hummers??
    This was sad and hilarious at the same time. What kind of car do disabled folks drive??

  8. “How many disabled people can there be in a major metropolitan city anyways???”

    And why on earth would more than one or two of them all turn up at once for a ginormous concert??!?


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