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Amazon, Sony and other companies are petitioning the Federal Communications Commission to bepermanently exempt from federal accessibility laws for individuals with disabilities. E-readers, according to a letter they sent earlier this year, are "barebones devices" made for only one purpose, reading text, and therefore should not have to be fully accessible to the blind.
Under the Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act, which President Obama signed into law in 2010, equipment that is "used for advanced communications services [ACS], including end user equipment” must be “accessible to and usable by individuals with disabilities."
Chris Danielsen, the director of public relations for the National Federation of the Blind, urges Amazon and other manufacturers to do the right thing and "make the devices accessible because you have to. They’re not just being used for pleasure reading; they are being used for education."
Amazon is currently seeking to have its devices used in educational settings. That's all the more reason that it and other manufacturers must make their devices accessible as under federal law, devices used in educational settings must be accessible to those with visual impairments.
Amazon and other manufacturers must make devices that any and everyone can use.
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