Where can you find television programs for people with disabilities or videotapes for people who are blind? An online directory of periodicals and other media dealing with disabilities? A list of films that featured characters with disabling conditions? Check out these sites.
Owned and operated by the American Council of the Blind, ACB Radio is a webcasting service that offers four Internet radio stations which can be received using a variety popular and free Internet audio players. They include ACB Radio Mainstream, which features programs on technology, a blindness talk show, and other national and international programs; ACB Radio Interactive, which features blind radio personalities hosting music shows from around the globe; and the ACB Radio Cafe, which hosts blind musicians from around the world.
Billing itself as “The First Global TV Network for people with disabilities… Powered by Accessibility…via the Web,” this site is categorized by type of disability and features pertinent online videos. (The free RealG2 Player is required to watch them.) The last time we checked (August 2001), there were only one or two videos altogether, and the site did not appear to be regularly updated. The Events & Conference section, however, had some excellent and fairly timely clips, such as John Hockenberry speaking at the CSUN Conference, and President Bush talking about the New Freedom Initiative.
An excellent overview of media access, this part of the Infinitec website features information and links relating to all aspects of media access. The television page covers FCC regulations, closed-caption television, large screen television, descriptive narration TV, and closed-circuit television. Separate sections deal with theater, movies, television, ADA guidelines, and accessible stadiums. The movies page covers assistive listening devices, open-captioned motion pictures, the Motion Picture Access Project, Captioned Media Program, and more. Other pages include theater, ADA guidelines, accessible stadiums, and foreign films.
Part of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication, this group promotes academic research, outreach and access relating to disability issues and mass media. Its website includes a good list of video suggestions for mass communication courses and lists of related research papers and panel discussions.
[Editor’s Note: When we last checked in August 2001, many of the links were not working. This link may be removed from our website.]
The author of this personal home page reviews and rates popular movies in terms of the ease in which individuals who are blind can follow them. This is a unique resources; however, users should bear in mind that the reviews are subjective and undated.
NCAM is “a research and development facility that works to make media accessible to underserved populations such as disabled persons, minority-language users, and people with low literacy skills.” NCAM’s website describes its current projects, such as Access to Convergent Media Project, DTV Access Project, Web Accessibility Projects, CD-ROM Access Project, Motion Picture Access Project, Education Projects, and SALT Project.
The “home” of descriptive video for people who are blind or visually impaired, this section of the WGBH website offers information about descriptive video, a schedule of programs broadcast with description, a catalog of videotapes available with narration, samples to see and hear, a quarterly newsletter, and much more.
Information about this 24-hour cable television network featuring audio described and open captioned programs relating to disabilities. The site includes information about shows, schedules, specials, channels, and Kaleidoscope “Live!” on the Web.
An outgrowth of the MacArthur Foundation Library Video Project, the Library Media Project assists in the development of video collection in public libraries, with a focus on public access to the Independent film and video community. This website describes videos on health and aging recommended by the project.
This personal home page by B. Haller offers a good collection of links to book publishers, films and broadcasts, international sources, news, organizational publications, research groups, web accessibility, and web publications.
This section of a personal home page on mental retardation and developmental disabilities features nicely annotated listings of movies involving mental retardation, mental health, institutionalization, and disabilities. A visit is guaranteed to inspire a trip to the local video store!
The mission of this new organization is “to improve the fairness, accuracy and diversity of news reporting on disability…. by developing tools to help journalists and educators examine the complexity of disability issues from differing perspectives.” As of this writing, its website didn’t offer much in the way of tools besides the first issue of its newsletter. Hopefully, this is a site to keep an eye on.
Over 250 Turner Classic Movies are available with closed-captions (cc) for people with hearing impairments, and more than 50 contain DVS audio descriptions for people with visual impairments. Icons on the schedule will help guide you.
This is a unique and extensive guide to television characters with disabilities throughout TV history. It is subdivided by disability, and each section includes descriptions of TV characters with that disability and the roles they played. Disability advocates may be offended by the author’s terminology and character descriptions, not to mention the fact that most of these characters were played by nondisabled characters.