moderated Re: Working with people at disability help desk

Soronel Haetir

I am sorry but this entire discussion is vastly off-topic for a jaws
support list.

On 3/7/21, David Diamond <> wrote:
I have to agree with Angel here, one man went to a guide dog school and was
deeply offended when he had to do his own laundry or make his bed.

Get Outlook for iOS<>
From: <> on behalf of Angel
Sent: Sunday, March 7, 2021 10:46:15 AM
To: <>
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

I think a cultural point here is being missed. In many countries, and
cultures, blind people aren’t living on their own, without sighted
assistance of some sort. As is the case regarding many blind people in this
country. Many have servants to clean, launder clothing, and such for them.
I learned this from those who occupy other lists to which I belong. So,
fewer than we might like to admit are totally without sighted assistance.
Therefore, we must mitigate our circumstance by making it easier for those
assisting us to do their jobs. I have a physical challenge. Which makes
for slower typing, as well as me being totally blind. So, my way of
mitigating my personal situation is: To speed up the amount of time it
takes to assist me: I tell the assistant, I am not near my computer. I,
then, ask them to tell me the steps necessary to solve my problem. That
way, I can solve the problem off the phone. Which saves time, and possible
stress, for us both.

Sent from Mail<> for Windows

From: Vaughn Brown<>
Sent: Sunday, March 7, 2021 12:31 PM
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

Well-said Diane!

From: <> On Behalf Of Leedy Diane
Sent: Saturday, March 6, 2021 9:27 PM
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

The message appearing at the end is, no doubt, a careless mistake on my
part. I am usually very careful about that, but somehow it has happened
twice, lately.

As far as the white on white, I had no clue how to do that, and hope that I
have rectified that problem. I hope that you will let me know.

Though, I must say, considering the topic and your status as a sighted user,
I possibly would have done that on purpose, if I had known how. Ironic,
isn't it? I had no problem reading it, and anyone using speech or braille
output would not have had a problem. But, you, a light and contrast
dependent person, had to do the kind of calisthenics we go through each day
at many times!

What if you had to have a blind person read it for you? If you didn't know
about accessibility, and only a blind person could read it, you would have
been up a creek without a blind 24/7 companion.

So, I apologize for that weirdness, and promise you that I did not do it on
purpose, but, I have learned a lot of information because of the problem. I
swear that I did not do anything with my keyboard or touch screen, that
should have caused that problem. But, I have grimlins in my house with a
wicked sense of humor!

I called Apple, talked to a sighted accessibility specialist who insisted
that what happened was impossible. She wouldn't believe it until we did a
screen sharing session, and she could SEE it herself. So typical, seeing is
believing, after all. Though I add to that that "vision is deceiving". She
had to put me on hold for a long time to find out how that was possible,
then insisted that I had to have gone into the text formatting section and
changed the color. I did not do that. To make it more weird, email I typed,
while she was watching my screen, came out fine! My text formatting color
was set to white, and my screen was black, even when checking the screen
appearance under settings.

I think that most people are missing the point of my complaint, which has
nothing to do with expecting a sighted tech support person to know how a
blind person uses computers. It is strictly the assumption that there must
be a sighted person available to whom they can speak, without even trying to
explain how to do something. This applies to pushing buttons on my Roomba, a
setting on a router, using a blender with many buttons, etc. I expect tech
support to have people that have been trained in all aspects of their
product's capabilities, even if it means transferring the customer to
someone with specialty knowledge.

Please don't lecture me on capitalistic principles. It is condescending of
you to do that. I am not a stupid child, with no education or understanding
of economics. The point is that a niche market is a narrow-minded approach,
as all families have someone with some type of "disability". In addition,
all of us are a nanosecond away of contracting a disabling condition. The
point is that full inclusion is a societal issue, and is much less expensive
to provide in a design than having to rewrite, renovate, or kluge a
solution. Far too long, have I heard that argument, which says "we are
allowing you to be here, but don't expect equality." If you want to distract
by calling it "a chip on my shoulder" that is your prerogative, but does not
diminish the reality of the issue. Because I am not a typical blind person
that readily accepts my lot in society, that accepts that I must have
sighted assistance, that I am less important than anyone else, is not a part
of my mentality. We have to have goals, and, though, I don't expect the
equality and full inclusion to happen in my lifetime, I will do everything I
can to advocate for that eventuality. As a child, I owned very few books
that I could read, now I have access to more than I could read in several
lifetimes! Could I have expected that, but, did I dream and want it, YES! If
I and others had accepted that the immediate access to information was
reserved solely for people with sight, we would not be included, now.

Diane Bomar

On Mar 6, 2021, at 20:47, Brian Vogel
<<>> wrote:


Something weird is going on with your email. This last message on-group,
like your private message to me, is not only bottom posted beneath the
quotation of multiple messages, but is in white text on white background. I
doubt very much that either is by intent.

This is likely far less an issue to a screen reader user, since a screen
reader cares not one whit about foreground and background colors, but since
I know we have a couple of regulars who are visually impaired, rather than
totally blind, I am going to quote what you had in your last message
directly below:

When speech output was relatively new, I worked as a systems analyst at a
local utility company. The VP of that department, I suspect hired me just
for the excuse of buying a talking IBM terminal. I was expected to be
prepared, without notice, to make it read the pledge of allegiance to anyone
he brought to my office. They did not like it as much if I turned off the

We must educate society, and insist on full inclusion. What really gets to
me is the seeming assumption that I have to have a sighted person readily
available, and that if that is the case I would not have already asked for
their assistance if eyes would solve the problem. I need to know how to
solve issues, by myself, for future problems of that nature.

Amazon Kindle tech support should know, for instance, how one turns speech
output on/off. Two years ago, they insisted that I had to have "sighted
assistance" which, of course, is untrue. I went round and round with them
for over an hour before figuring it out for myself.

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Soronel Haetir

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