Bad Mama


iSuck
August 2, 2007, 8:02 pm
Filed under: Disability

Ok, so I was reading a story about how the iPhone is unusable if you are blind (it sounds like this may change as they upgrade them), the same as iPods are. I did a little search, and found this blog, where this issue was addressed back in January. I literally got ill reading the comments. Seriously, I’ll save you the trouble and nausea and summarize: Why the hell should we care if blind people can’t use it? Boo hoo! There’s all kinds of things they can’t do, why should this be any different? What’s next, iPhone discriminates against people without fingers*?

I need to believe people like this are in the minority, but sometimes it’s hard. I read blogs and stories from adults with diabilities, and while it is comforting to be reminded that Peanut will probably be just as happy an adult as she would have been if her legs worked right, it is very, very hard to read the stories about what these people have had to deal with and continue to have to deal with in regard to discrimination. The sheer number of idiots in the comment section of that blog is very depressing.

And then I discovered Steve Jobs likes to park illegally in handicapped parking spaces.

You might guess what that did to my decision to buy a Macbook. I don’t even want to use my iPod anymore.

*****

As I was writing this, Peanut stuck a sticker of a hippo on my belly. Thanks for the reminder, kid.

*Yes, someone said that.

After I posted this, I found this site with some “educational” disabled parking signs. Excuse the excessive advertising on the site, please, because the signs made me laugh out loud.

Penny from Disability Studies at Temple U. did a post on these and other signs a while ago. Look there instead!

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4 Comments so far
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We had a post about parking violators and creative efforts to stop them here:

http://disstud.blogspot.com/2006/07/go-park-yourself.html

There’s also CaughtYa.org — an online ‘Hall of Shame’ for parking violators:

http://caughtya.org/

The streams of iPhone comments you describe always veer into hyperbolic nonsense –the words “reasonable accommodation” don’t mean covering every possible everything at all costs, but they do mean product designers should do what’s already possible or easily achievable to make things more accessible. The iPhone could be made accessible to blind users–the means exist, and it wouldn’t alter the product for most users–it just wasn’t a priority at any point in the design process, and that’s where the problem lies. Why do otherwise inventive people suddenly become frozen at the thought of making a “cool” product even better?

(Oh, and a lot of Mac products actually do discriminate against people without use of their fingers– the virtual “buttons” aren’t made to respond to the touch of a stylus or other substitute–they could be, they just aren’t. Another case of not making accessibility a priority, or even a consideration.)

Comment by Penny

didn’t want an iphone anyway…dumb bastards

Comment by Dana

Cancel my order for an iPhone!

Comment by NaeNae

I am bipolar. Once I was looking for some information and wound up on a forum. I was scanning down the page, not really reading, when I realized that it was an entire forum devoted to making mean comments about bipolar people. One person tried to say something nicer and wound up pretty much insulting all bipolar patients even more than the others!

People are just not nice.

Comment by Just Me




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