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Home : ITU-T Home : Workshops and Seminars : Accessibility
ITU Workshop “Global Internet Access for Persons with Disabilities” at 4th IGF Meeting
Sharm el Sheikh, Egypt, 16 November 2009 Contact:
David Wood, European Broadcasting Union: 'I am not alone': Internet media content for people with disabilities

In the presentation, David Wood argues that we must do more than make Internet universally available and all user-ready, we must encourage and make available the content that those with disabilities need. The principle need we all have from the media is help us find our individual identity, and the same is true of those with disabilities. The presentation will outline how the evolution of the Interent may change the kind of content we need, and look at the specific issue of the way those with disabilities are represented in the media. Finally, the presentations makes some suggestions for directions and wok to be done.

Dipendra Manocha, Daisy Consortium: “Daisy Consortium, Digital Accessible information System for persons with print disabilities and on-line libraries”

DAISY is a standard for accessible digital content. There are several types of DAISY Books. Being Digital books, these can be distributed using Internet. Several models of telephone or computer based online and real time access based online libraries have been developed. Below are some of the examples of such online libraries of accessible digital books:
  • This library has collection of 9000 books in text only DAISY format. In India, membership of Bookshare is available at Rs. 400 per year. Many Indian publishers have given permissions to Bookshare to distribute their books through online library. Currently, all the cost of converting the book into digital format is being paid by the bookshare. Bookshare is working to get publisher permissions for any book that users wan in accessible format.
  • Telephone based library of Thailand: Persons with blindness can dial the library number using any landline or mobile phone. This connects them to the library and they can select any book of the library and listen to it on the phone itself. Users pay only one call charge to access the facility for any amount of time.
  • CNIB online library: Canada citizens can listen or download any book from this library by logging on to this library from any where in the world. They can also order a CD or Braille version of any of these books and then these books are produced through fully automated process and dispatched to the member of the library.
  • I-Access library of Australia: This online library has collection of 176 news papers and magazines and periodicals. Any user can choose any number of these publications. He can then downloads selected news papers every morning after 6 A.M. and listen to it on the DAISY player.
  • DAISY Online specifications: UK and Australia have done a pilot with the online specifications of DAISY to be able to read books from the online library without a computer. A special DAISY Player can be connected with internet and give access to the online library of audio books.
  • Korean mobile phone based library:
  • The Kindle Story
Cynthia Waddell, International Centre for Disability Resources on the Internet: “What is the UN Convention? How does it impact the Internet”

The UN Convention on Rights of Persons with Disabilities has been in legal force since 3 May 2008. This presentation provides an overview on the ICT obligations of the Convention including equal access to the Internet and provides an update on the Monitoring Committee activities. It also points to resources available to assist in the implementation of the Convention, including a compilation of national legislative efforts undertaken to implement the Convention.

Fernando Botelho, Botelho & Paula Consultoria: “Public-Private Partnerships for Low and No-Cost Assistive Technologies”

Public-private partnerships allow assistive technology projects to benefit from both the innovation and efficiency so often found in the private sector, with the scale that only governments can offer. This presentation will present some of the strategies that governments can adopt to ensure a thriving assistive technology marketplace and affordable products. In this presentation "partnering" is used in its broadest sense, to include the more fundamental private sector needs such as clear regulatory frameworks and up-to-date procurement policies, as well as the usual government-funded research initiatives. The focus will be on the disproportionately large impact in cost reduction that effective public-private partnerships can have and the importance this has for transforming the promises of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in reality.

Gerard Ellis, Feel The BenefIT: “The Economic Imperative of Social Inclusion”

The generally accepted figure is that at least 10% of the population of the world have a recognizable disability. As the population grays, this percentage is likely to increase.

In the past, people with disabilities were told that it would cost too much and be too much trouble for organizations to adapt their products and services to accommodate the needs of a small number of potential customers.

This presentation will investigate, from the point of view of a disabled user of ICTs, the economic benefit of including the needs of people with disabilities in technological products and services. It will do so in relation to ICT designers, developers and managers. A special emphasis will be given to Internet Applications.

The conclusion is that people with disabilities and older people gain disproportionately from such inclusion, but that all stakeholders benefit. More than this, all of society benefits. The incorporation of Universal Design early in the development process is the key.


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Updated : 2009-11-13