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Authors Guild Protest

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(street noises) Dr Marc Maurer, President, National Federation of the Blind: There are 15 million - we estimate - Americans who cannot read print. And 1.3 million of them are blind people. And we want the same access to information that other people have and take for granted. That's why we have come right outside the Authors Guild building her. We asked them if they'd talk with us and they said no. So we came to tell them that we mean it. Demonstrators: Come on down (repeated) A man: We want them to know at 7th floor that we want our books. We want our books! Demonstrators: We want out books! (repeated) Rosy Carranea - NFB: The Kindle 2 has a wonderful feature that allows for text-to-speech. In other words, a blind person or another person with a print disability can purchase and have a book read out loud. Unfortunately, that feature is being turned off everyday by publishers who do not understand our needs. And we are here to show them that that feature is very important to our overall well-being. Woman: Amazon launched the Kindle 2 and allowed all e-books to have the text-to-speech access. But the Authors Guild stepped in and stopped that, because they're concerned about royalties and payments to authors John Pare, Ex. Dir. of Strategic Initiatives, NFB: The authors, who traditionally believe in freedom and the free flow of information decided that now, they would be the arbiters of which Americans get to read. This is wrong. This is a form of censorship. The Reading Coalition will not be silenced. We will have books. Thank you for being here. Demonstrators: ... (?) not for you. We want to read them too Marc Maurer: The National Federation of the Blind is leading this coalition but the coalition is a coalition of people who want the right to read in non visual ways. Demonstrators: ... we want to read them too Chris Danielson. Dir. of PR. NFB: The coalition consists of blind Americans represented by the NFB, it consists of people who have learning disabilities, like dyslexia, it consists of people who have spinal cord injuries which makes it hard for them to hold books and thus hard for them to read print, it consists of people who have other brain injuries that make reading difficult, people who are learning English, and many, many, other Americans who can benefit from using test-to-speech. Demonstrators repeat: We want our books. Joanne Simon, Dir. Special Events. International Dyslexia Association: You know, we have opened the doors of education and higher education to people with disabilities across the country, but we haven't opened the books. We need to make sure they have access to the same materials that everybody else does. This is something where the civil rights matter and people with disabilities are going to continue to pursue this. (Demonstrators chanting) Woman: To the Authors Guild, I want to say that we will appreciate and we will love for you to make books accessible for us to read Mark Ricobono: Finally, we have a technology in the Kindle that has the promise of access that I can go and buy a book at the same time as my sighted relative or sighted colleague at work and have equal access to that book, and pay the same amount for it And that is not going to take away from their revenue, it's not going to take away from their intellectual property and in fact, it's going to enhance their ability to sell More books to more people, because the knowledge will be spread amongst more people. Woman: knowledge (?) is within our reach, but for it we need text to speech Demonstrators: We want e-nooks (repeated) Marc Maurer: This is the first of the protests that will occur. (Demonstrators cheer) Maurer: This is not the last of the protests. (Demonstrators cheer) Maurer: This is only the beginning. (Cheers) Maurer: We have the right to read and we will never cease until we get it. (Cheers) Demonstrators: we want a reader too, and we want a book for you (?) (onscreen: Sign the petition: http://readingrights.org - Reading Rights - NFB)

Video Details

Duration: 4 minutes and 59 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
Producer: National Federation of the Blind (US)
Views: 104
Posted by: calmansi on Jul 6, 2010

Uploaded to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7vUtMAOFURE by NationsBlind http://www.youtube.com/user/NationsBlind | 09 June 2009

On April 7, 2009, the NFB and the Reading Rights Coalition protested the Authors Guild for lobbying to disable text-to-speech on the Kindle 2. This video reports live from the protest in New York City.

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