Date   

moderated Re: Working with people at disability help desk

Mike B.
 


Hi Ken,
 
No, never heard of either of these, thanks for sharing.
 
 
Stay safe and take care.  Mike.

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Sunday, March 07, 2021 2:08 PM
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

Good day.

 

Have you folks heard of the www.gethuman.com web site or the smart phone gethuman app?

 

I do not believe it sends/lists you to a disability help desk, but it might shorten a journey or two to get assistance.

 

HTH,

Ken

 

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of Brian Vogel
Sent: Sunday, March 7, 2021 2:55 PM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

On Sun, Mar 7, 2021 at 02:42 PM, Soronel Haetir wrote:

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

-
Not that I don't agree, but you clearly have not been paying attention to the things customarily allowed to be discussed on this very list.  Moderation is very light-handed, and a huge number of topics are not "on topic" as far as being JAWS related.  This is but one of many.

There is a reason you have the "Mute this Topic" option at the bottom of each and every message and it's up to you to use it.  You also have other options that give you even more control:

Controlling the Messages You Receive via E-Mail from Groups.io (docx)


--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 20H2, Build 19042  

To think is to differ.
      ~ Clarence Darrow


moderated Re: Jaws 2021 incorrect serial number

Mike B.
 


If you're installing for the first time and you're authorizing using the internet, read the box that shows your authorization code and make sure your authorization number is correct.  Other than that I don't know of anything else you can do except for talking to FS / Vispero tech support.
 
 
Stay safe and take care.  Mike.

----- Original Message -----
From: Bill White
Sent: Sunday, March 07, 2021 2:47 PM
Subject: Re: Jaws 2021 incorrect serial number

I don't think this is something you will be able to do yourself. I think you will have to call or email Vispero (Freedom Scientific).

Bill White

billwhite92701@...

-----Original Message-----
From: main@jfw.groups.io [mailto:main@jfw.groups.io] On Behalf Of Audiobookfan
Sent: Sunday, March 7, 2021 2:45 PM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Jaws 2021 incorrect serial number

I just installed Jaws 2021 but it won't activate properly because it's
using an incorrect serial number. Activation says it completes
successfully, but it still continues to run in 40 minute mode. I cannot
find where to correct the serial number. How do I fix this?

Jeff











moderated Re: Jaws 2021 incorrect serial number

Bill White
 

I don't think this is something you will be able to do yourself. I think you will have to call or email Vispero (Freedom Scientific).

Bill White

billwhite92701@att.net

-----Original Message-----
From: main@jfw.groups.io [mailto:main@jfw.groups.io] On Behalf Of Audiobookfan
Sent: Sunday, March 7, 2021 2:45 PM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Jaws 2021 incorrect serial number

I just installed Jaws 2021 but it won't activate properly because it's
using an incorrect serial number. Activation says it completes
successfully, but it still continues to run in 40 minute mode. I cannot
find where to correct the serial number. How do I fix this?

Jeff


moderated Jaws 2021 incorrect serial number

Audiobookfan
 

I just installed Jaws 2021 but it won't activate properly because it's using an incorrect serial number. Activation says it completes successfully, but it still continues to run in 40 minute mode. I cannot find where to correct the serial number. How do I fix this?

Jeff


moderated Re: Problem when in Outlook 2016

Dan Longmore
 

Sounds like Outlook has been corrupted.  Disability desk should be able to fix.

 

Dan

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of kevin meyers
Sent: Sunday, March 7, 2021 11:25 AM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Problem when in Outlook 2016

 

Hello,

Since the most recent version of Jaws 2021 Outlook has been acting weird. I’m using windows10 and Outlook 2016 most recent versions. I will be in Outlook 2016 and out of the clear blue it looks like I’m taken out of Outlook. I have to switch windows back to Outlook. Then a few minutes later Outlook freezes and email I had deleted return to the inbox. Then Outlook seems to have multiple windows open as I decide to close Outlook and emails I never opened are now open. I have to press alt F4 closing out of emails as escape doesn’t work. Then I close out of a window that has Outlook open and it looks like I’m then in another window of Outlook. Then a number of times the short cut on the desk stop disappears and I have to add it. Has anyone experienced this problem? Thanks, Kevin


moderated Re: Working with people at disability help desk

Ken Chernack
 

Good day.

 

Have you folks heard of the www.gethuman.com web site or the smart phone gethuman app?

 

I do not believe it sends/lists you to a disability help desk, but it might shorten a journey or two to get assistance.

 

HTH,

Ken

 

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of Brian Vogel
Sent: Sunday, March 7, 2021 2:55 PM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

On Sun, Mar 7, 2021 at 02:42 PM, Soronel Haetir wrote:

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

-
Not that I don't agree, but you clearly have not been paying attention to the things customarily allowed to be discussed on this very list.  Moderation is very light-handed, and a huge number of topics are not "on topic" as far as being JAWS related.  This is but one of many.

There is a reason you have the "Mute this Topic" option at the bottom of each and every message and it's up to you to use it.  You also have other options that give you even more control:

Controlling the Messages You Receive via E-Mail from Groups.io (docx)

 
--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 20H2, Build 19042  

To think is to differ.
      ~ Clarence Darrow

_._,_._,_


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You receive all messages sent to this group.

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moderated Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

On Sun, Mar 7, 2021 at 02:42 PM, Soronel Haetir wrote:
I am sorry but this entire discussion is vastly off-topic for a jaws
support list.
-
Not that I don't agree, but you clearly have not been paying attention to the things customarily allowed to be discussed on this very list.  Moderation is very light-handed, and a huge number of topics are not "on topic" as far as being JAWS related.  This is but one of many.

There is a reason you have the "Mute this Topic" option at the bottom of each and every message and it's up to you to use it.  You also have other options that give you even more control:

Controlling the Messages You Receive via E-Mail from Groups.io (docx)

 
--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 20H2, Build 19042  

To think is to differ.
      ~ Clarence Darrow


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 <Daviddiamond2019@outlook.com> 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<https://aka.ms/o0ukef>
________________________________
From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> on behalf of Angel
<angel238@sbcglobal.net>
Sent: Sunday, March 7, 2021 10:46:15 AM
To: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io>
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<https://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=550986> for Windows
10



From: Vaughn Brown<mailto:jazzdressage@gmail.com>
Sent: Sunday, March 7, 2021 12:31 PM
To: main@jfw.groups.io<mailto:main@jfw.groups.io>
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk



Well-said Diane!



From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of Leedy Diane
Bomar
Sent: Saturday, March 6, 2021 9:27 PM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
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
<britechguy@gmail.com<mailto:britechguy@gmail.com>> wrote:

Diane,

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
screen.



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.
------




________________________________
[Avast logo] <https://www.avast.com/antivirus>

This email has been checked for viruses by Avast antivirus software.
www.avast.com<https://www.avast.com/antivirus>







--
Soronel Haetir
soronel.haetir@gmail.com


moderated Re: Working with people at disability help desk

David Diamond
 

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.  


From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> on behalf of Angel <angel238@...>
Sent: Sunday, March 7, 2021 10:46:15 AM
To: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io>
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 10

 

From: Vaughn Brown
Sent: Sunday, March 7, 2021 12:31 PM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

Well-said Diane!

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of Leedy Diane Bomar
Sent: Saturday, March 6, 2021 9:27 PM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
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 <britechguy@...> wrote:

Diane, 

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 screen.

 

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.
------

 




Avast logo

This email has been checked for viruses by Avast antivirus software.
www.avast.com



moderated Re: Working with people at disability help desk

David Diamond
 

Absolutely. I’ve talked to some English speaking people that are thick as a plank and are not good problem solvers.  We had one with our cable box.  When what he suggested did not work, he said we needed a new TV.  Even though I was able to prove it was the box because I had the same problem hooking it up to another TV.  


From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> on behalf of Marianne Denning <marianne@...>
Sent: Sunday, March 7, 2021 10:27:30 AM
To: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io>
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk
 

I usually talk to someone in the Philippines when I contact Microsoft customer service. I have not had one who could not speak English well. I don’t think we should talk about anyone’s country because that has nothing to do with the issues of any accessibility help desk. I have had as many problems speaking with someone in the U.S. as I have had in any other country. I believe the quality of training by the company and the level of expectations from the company are key factors in the quality of service we receive.

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of Sieghard Weitzel
Sent: Sunday, March 7, 2021 11:35 AM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

The fact is that these support agents are in their own country, if you don't like the fact that Microsoft outsources their support to countries like India and the Philippines the complain to them.

In any case, very rarely do you get somebody whose English is truly bad, they typically don't get the job if they are not profficient but of course they do often have a bit of an accent, but then again there are places in the US where people have a harder to understand accent than 99% of the support agents from India or the Philippines. And, by the way, if you had your narrow-minded wish and all the foreign workers who work here in Canada and the US were sent home our economies would collapse utterly.

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of Mich Verrier
Sent: Saturday, March 6, 2021 10:52 AM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

I have a problem when calling these places and get to some one who can hardly speek English and who lives in indiea or some forin place like that to me if you can’t speek English or hardly can then go back to your oan contrey. Also I am worried when working with ms accessibillidey that they are always going to screw something up when they want to fix your pc remotely. From Mich.

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of Marianne Denning
Sent: March 6, 2021 1:40 PMi am always worried when working with ms disibillidey desk that they are going to screw up my pc when they ae wanting to remotely access it. From Mich.
To:I have a problem when I call places and get transferd to some one who hardly knows English sorry but if you don’t know English then get another job or move back to your oan contrey. That is just my thoughts on this also as far as working with the Microsoft disibillidey desk I have had no problums with them in the past how ever I am always worried when they start messing around with y pc that they are going to screw something up. From Mich.
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

I am totally 100% understanding when I am working with someone who knows nothing about blind people and how best to help us. I have a problem when someone works with a company who provides goods and services to blind people and asks me if there is a sighted person available. I am the market for these companies and their staff must know how to communicate with me in a nonvisual way. If that person can’t do it because they are new to their job they need to refer me to someone who can work with me.

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of Brian Vogel
Sent: Saturday, March 6, 2021 12:40 PM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Re: Need Microsoft Disability phone number!

 

On Sat, Mar 6, 2021 at 12:25 PM, David Diamond wrote:

There has to be a meeting in the middle though.

-
Oh, absolutely!   But that meeting in the middle, when you're the "exotic one" in a given situation, very often entails you educating the helper about certain things as they try to help you.

There was a time when I didn't know diddly-squat about any form of assistive technology.  I learned based on the work I was doing and who I was doing it with.  Had I not needed (or chosen) to do that work with the populations I've worked with I would have absolutely no reason to know anything about it.  Every one of those populations are niche demographics.  The phrase "mainstream support" carries many shadings to the "mainstream" part.  If you are a part of any niche you had better disabuse yourself of the notion of "all things being equal, or even possibly ever being equal" with all possible haste.  And that's not because of malign intent, but because the capitalist system we live under means that businesses exist to make money, and the idea of "spending more than we get back" exists and not wanting to do that is perfectly legitimate.

But even when I didn't know what I know now, I had occasion to work with a couple of folks who happened to be blind, and was able to assist them with technical problems.  I knew I couldn't use visual terms such as, "click on the red X," but I could use the more generic, "Close the window," or, "Exit the program."   I did, and should have been able to expect, that the exact how that was to be done would be known by the person being assisted.  I no sooner knew ALT+F4 than subatomic physics.

Most support techs who want to be in the job will go as far as they possibly can if the other side is willing to meet in the middle.  The relationship between a sighted, but AT clueless support tech, and a blind client need not be adversarial.  When they give a visual instruction, which they will particularly before it sinks in that they can't, saying something like, "What is it that you're hoping will happen?," or, "What is it that you want me to accomplish?," will often get a response back that allows you to instantly know what you must do.

There will always be idiots out there, and I'm not trying to defend them.  But it is every bit as much up to the blind client dealing with someone who does not know AT, and who is not remoted in to their machine so they can see what is going on (which, for obvious reasons, is how we with sight generally work), to help the person trying to help them when it comes to the AT side of things.  It also helps to understand that many of the signt-centric instructions are part of a script.  Far too many companies put the inexperienced on help lines and adamantly insist that they stick with the script, and when they don't know what they're doing, they have to.  It's the people who've been doing this for a while, and like doing it, who often relish being able to "step outside the box" when the opportunity presents itself.  Others, of course, will not, and if it quickly gets ugly then that's when the, "I wish to be put through to your supervisor," step gets taken, as many times as necessary and as many levels as necessary, to lodge a legitimate complaint.
 
--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 20H2, Build 19042  

One does not discover new lands without consenting to lose sight of the shore for a very long time.

           ~ André Gide


moderated Re: Working with people at disability help desk

Angel
 

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 10

 

From: Vaughn Brown
Sent: Sunday, March 7, 2021 12:31 PM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

Well-said Diane!

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of Leedy Diane Bomar
Sent: Saturday, March 6, 2021 9:27 PM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
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 <britechguy@...> wrote:

Diane, 

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 screen.

 

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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moderated Re: Working with people at disability help desk

Marianne Denning
 

I usually talk to someone in the Philippines when I contact Microsoft customer service. I have not had one who could not speak English well. I don’t think we should talk about anyone’s country because that has nothing to do with the issues of any accessibility help desk. I have had as many problems speaking with someone in the U.S. as I have had in any other country. I believe the quality of training by the company and the level of expectations from the company are key factors in the quality of service we receive.

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of Sieghard Weitzel
Sent: Sunday, March 7, 2021 11:35 AM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

The fact is that these support agents are in their own country, if you don't like the fact that Microsoft outsources their support to countries like India and the Philippines the complain to them.

In any case, very rarely do you get somebody whose English is truly bad, they typically don't get the job if they are not profficient but of course they do often have a bit of an accent, but then again there are places in the US where people have a harder to understand accent than 99% of the support agents from India or the Philippines. And, by the way, if you had your narrow-minded wish and all the foreign workers who work here in Canada and the US were sent home our economies would collapse utterly.

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of Mich Verrier
Sent: Saturday, March 6, 2021 10:52 AM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

I have a problem when calling these places and get to some one who can hardly speek English and who lives in indiea or some forin place like that to me if you can’t speek English or hardly can then go back to your oan contrey. Also I am worried when working with ms accessibillidey that they are always going to screw something up when they want to fix your pc remotely. From Mich.

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of Marianne Denning
Sent: March 6, 2021 1:40 PMi am always worried when working with ms disibillidey desk that they are going to screw up my pc when they ae wanting to remotely access it. From Mich.
To:I have a problem when I call places and get transferd to some one who hardly knows English sorry but if you don’t know English then get another job or move back to your oan contrey. That is just my thoughts on this also as far as working with the Microsoft disibillidey desk I have had no problums with them in the past how ever I am always worried when they start messing around with y pc that they are going to screw something up. From Mich.
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

I am totally 100% understanding when I am working with someone who knows nothing about blind people and how best to help us. I have a problem when someone works with a company who provides goods and services to blind people and asks me if there is a sighted person available. I am the market for these companies and their staff must know how to communicate with me in a nonvisual way. If that person can’t do it because they are new to their job they need to refer me to someone who can work with me.

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of Brian Vogel
Sent: Saturday, March 6, 2021 12:40 PM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Re: Need Microsoft Disability phone number!

 

On Sat, Mar 6, 2021 at 12:25 PM, David Diamond wrote:

There has to be a meeting in the middle though.

-
Oh, absolutely!   But that meeting in the middle, when you're the "exotic one" in a given situation, very often entails you educating the helper about certain things as they try to help you.

There was a time when I didn't know diddly-squat about any form of assistive technology.  I learned based on the work I was doing and who I was doing it with.  Had I not needed (or chosen) to do that work with the populations I've worked with I would have absolutely no reason to know anything about it.  Every one of those populations are niche demographics.  The phrase "mainstream support" carries many shadings to the "mainstream" part.  If you are a part of any niche you had better disabuse yourself of the notion of "all things being equal, or even possibly ever being equal" with all possible haste.  And that's not because of malign intent, but because the capitalist system we live under means that businesses exist to make money, and the idea of "spending more than we get back" exists and not wanting to do that is perfectly legitimate.

But even when I didn't know what I know now, I had occasion to work with a couple of folks who happened to be blind, and was able to assist them with technical problems.  I knew I couldn't use visual terms such as, "click on the red X," but I could use the more generic, "Close the window," or, "Exit the program."   I did, and should have been able to expect, that the exact how that was to be done would be known by the person being assisted.  I no sooner knew ALT+F4 than subatomic physics.

Most support techs who want to be in the job will go as far as they possibly can if the other side is willing to meet in the middle.  The relationship between a sighted, but AT clueless support tech, and a blind client need not be adversarial.  When they give a visual instruction, which they will particularly before it sinks in that they can't, saying something like, "What is it that you're hoping will happen?," or, "What is it that you want me to accomplish?," will often get a response back that allows you to instantly know what you must do.

There will always be idiots out there, and I'm not trying to defend them.  But it is every bit as much up to the blind client dealing with someone who does not know AT, and who is not remoted in to their machine so they can see what is going on (which, for obvious reasons, is how we with sight generally work), to help the person trying to help them when it comes to the AT side of things.  It also helps to understand that many of the signt-centric instructions are part of a script.  Far too many companies put the inexperienced on help lines and adamantly insist that they stick with the script, and when they don't know what they're doing, they have to.  It's the people who've been doing this for a while, and like doing it, who often relish being able to "step outside the box" when the opportunity presents itself.  Others, of course, will not, and if it quickly gets ugly then that's when the, "I wish to be put through to your supervisor," step gets taken, as many times as necessary and as many levels as necessary, to lodge a legitimate complaint.
 
--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 20H2, Build 19042  

One does not discover new lands without consenting to lose sight of the shore for a very long time.

           ~ André Gide


moderated Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

On Sun, Mar 7, 2021 at 01:22 PM, Marianne Denning wrote:
I must disagree with you in some areas.
-
I do not see how what you said disagrees with anything I did.  I didn't address the things you do one way or another, and have no disagreement with what you've said.
 
--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 20H2, Build 19042  

To think is to differ.
      ~ Clarence Darrow


moderated Re: Working with people at disability help desk

Marianne Denning
 

I must disagree with you in some areas. My husband says that when he sees something about 10 hidden tips for IOS it usually tells you to go to accessibility. Many people who are not disabled like the features that are available when a certain disability feature is turned on. I will give another example but this is not related to blindness or technology. People were all upset about putting curb cuts in for people with mobility impairments. Then, many people learned how helpful they are when pushing a stroller, moving things on a cart…. People never know how helpful something may be until it is available.

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of Richard B. McDonald
Sent: Sunday, March 7, 2021 12:18 PM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

Indeed!

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of Brian Vogel
Sent: Sunday, March 07, 2021 9:11 AM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

On Sun, Mar 7, 2021 at 02:02 AM, David Diamond wrote:

implying the blind have a chip on their shoulder

-
Some do.  Note, I said some, but it becomes pretty obvious, pretty quickly, who falls into that demographic.  In my opinion, Mr. Spivey doesn't.

I have no compunction about saying that there are plenty of chips out there, and most are because the world is not exactly as they want it, and not only that, can't ever be as they want it.

There's a difference between trying to explain why things are the way they are, stating that further change is needed and can be made, but that the fantasy world that's being sought will never occur and saying, "Shut up and be happy with what you've got."

There really is a Grand Scheme of Things, and when you're part of a minority (mine happens to be being gay) you should learn very quickly that the world is never going to cater precisely as you might like to "your tribe" because "your tribe" is a very tiny part of the whole.  

It also helps to realize when "your tribe" has outsized influence relative to numbers.  And when it comes to the world of computing, accessibility, and the blind, the community's influence is hugely outsized compared to your actual numbers.  I've said before, and I'll say again, accessibility is not a money maker, at least not directly.  But the public relations benefits (and, lets admit this too, the penalties that would be incurred for saying "screw you, blind people" if you're a major in the business) for developing an accessibility focus and having dedicated support is huge.  Worth it's weight in gold in places where it can matter a lot, which is not with the general public, really, as prior comments in this topic clearly indicate.

That doesn't mean things are perfect, or cannot use a lot of improvement.  It does mean plaints about being ignored, no one caring about making things better, and the like are pure, unadulterated BS.  I lived through the periods in computing where accessibility wasn't even thought of, where it became grudgingly thought about as an after thought (at best) and badly reverse-engineered, became thought about at design (but infrequently), to the point where it is now taught as part of computer science programs and is built-in to most large scale newly developed software.  That's an absolutely tectonic shift.
 
--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 20H2, Build 19042  

To think is to differ.
      ~ Clarence Darrow


moderated Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

On Sun, Mar 7, 2021 at 12:31 PM, Vaughn Brown wrote:
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.
-
And your belief that this is the case is, quite simply, wrong.  Period, end of sentence.  I will repeat here what I wrote to you privately, because I did write it, and the point is not in any meaningful sense private:

. . . you really don't seem to get, at all, that while what you'd like in terms of technical support is admirable, it really is, your concerns are not the only ones.  People who work these jobs are not there to educate you, period.  If you do learn something that's great, and it often happens, but they are not there with the primary goal of teaching you, or anyone, anything.  They are there to fix problems.  They're cyber mechanics.  Or cyber doctors. Or cyber plumbers.  We do not expect these other service providers to teach the person engaging their services, and expecting that as part and parcel of tech support, any tech support, is unrealistic.  It's a bonus if and when it happens.
 
         I'm simply not buying into your assertion, and that's what it is, that any request related to the availability of a sighted assistant is, by definition, insulting.  You have been given multiple instances, and not just by me, that this is not true.  You can insist that it is, and I will refuse to indulge it.
--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 20H2, Build 19042  

To think is to differ.
      ~ Clarence Darrow


moderated Re: Working with people at disability help desk

Vaughn Brown
 

Well-said Diane!

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of Leedy Diane Bomar
Sent: Saturday, March 6, 2021 9:27 PM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
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 <britechguy@...> wrote:

Diane, 

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 screen.

 

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.
------


moderated Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

On Sun, Mar 7, 2021 at 11:22 AM, David Diamond wrote:
I think there are a lot of techs  who can’t think outside the box. If it’s not written down they’ve got no clue.
-
Absolutely.  And it isn't just support techs.

But it really does amaze me that there are certain people who remain in the business for years, yet never develop the ability to move beyond the walls of that box.  One of the things that separates a great technician from the rest is to take the sum of their work history and use that to make great leaps when the opportunity presents itself.  You should be able to get a "Spidey Sense" about what's going on even with incomplete, and possibly partially incorrect, information and explore that immediately rather than spending ungodly amounts of time stepping someone through "the script."  A great many never can.
--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 20H2, Build 19042  

To think is to differ.
      ~ Clarence Darrow


moderated Re: Working with people at disability help desk

Vaughn Brown
 

I recall when they were helping me install Windows 10 they deleted the operating system for Mac which completely made the computer useless. Then they said, cheerfully, “you now have Windows 10, enjoy”.

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of David Diamond
Sent: Sunday, March 7, 2021 8:22 AM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

The other thing is too, I think there are a lot of techs  who can’t think outside the box. If it’s not written down they’ve got no clue. A while back I talked to a tech because I needed something done, she fixed what needed to be done and I asked her why her co-workers could not do it.  She said sometimes if they don’t know how to do it, they just say, “We don’t do that, or it can’t be done.”  Which gets back to an earlier comment about not even trying. I’m not sure if I buy the reasoning of blaming the company for these people who are incapable of understanding what we want or need. Does the company go to these people’s houses and drag them out of their bed so they can work for the company? Now, I’m being facetious.       

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of Tyler Wood
Sent: March 6, 2021 11:34 PM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

Hello,

Chip on my shoulder? I’m not sure if you’re being sarcastic with that or not.

As a blind person/person with a disability, I am simply explaining what I have seen again and again, especially as it relates to the real world.

This goes well above and beyond accessibility. It is a question of how we interact with those around us and how one action by one person in our demographic, as it were, can change how we are viewed by general society. I am a very patient individual who is willing to educate, explain, and generally attempt to verse a person on what would help me accomplish a task, and I like to try and encourage those in similar situations to do likewise. I’m not a fan of yelling and screaming without identifying information on what  would make a product more accessible, make me as a person more or less comfortable, and encourage those around me to treat me as a normal every day person in a way that educates and helps them understand where I am coming from.

I am also willing to view our shortcomings – and that is to say we, as blind individuals, tend to do the exact same thing as those sighted people around us. Thus, we do not understand where *they* are coming from, at times, regardless of their explanations. Someone can try and explain time and time again what colors look like, but I will never understand it, apart from the most general sense.

 

Thus, if there are lights flashing on a router, and as that is how the tech support is trained to troubleshoot issues, yes, I am more than willing to try and get sighted help. In the real world, agents, and companies, would like to train people in a similar vein so there are no inconsistencies. This isn’t a slight against me. This is simple fact – much as I dislike it. I’m not going to refuse to do something because I need to reach out and ask for help, and that’s what I take issue with. It also very much depends on the support agent in question. I remember calling Netflix a while ago regarding a Talkback issue on Android. I ended up getting transferred right up the chain. By the last call of the evening, I had a gentlemen on the line who was willing to go above and beyond what his training provided. He ran talkback, took the time to ask me questions on how to navigate with it, and we went through the issues I was having together. This was after countless phone calls with support agents who continuously used every day references – click the three dots at the top right, etc etc. As much as we may think it may be their job to know our technology, we must also take into consideration that we need to have a general understanding of the terms they use so we can better help the person on the end of the line help us. That is, also, simple fact, and not a slight against us. It sounds easy now in hindsight, but patience can truly make or break these types of things. Take a few deep breaths, remember that the agent is simply trying their best to help.

 

Regarding agents from other countries – or who I struggle to understand – this can definitely add some frustration. They may be trying to tell me something and I am not understanding, or vice versa. It is not a slight against them, it is a slight against the company. The company put them in this situation, and thus me, too.

That being said, I’ve had some truly enlightening conversations that resulted in software or firmware fixes with those across the pond, as it were, so I’d also encourage not immediately dismissing them and explaining your issue as best you are able.

 

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of David Diamond
Sent: Sunday, March 7, 2021 1:02 AM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

Tyler Wood, it almost sounds like you are implying the blind have a chip on their shoulder by your verbiage.  My hard of hearing cousin had an expression which is almost verbatim what you said, “Yell and scream and you will get whatever you want!” I enjoy groups like this because it debunks the idea that I was told years ago by a blind person.  “David, you have to realize that most blind people have no life and all they do is post emails to groups.”   

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of Leedy Diane Bomar
Sent: March 6, 2021 7:30 PM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

 

 Diane Bomar


On Mar 6, 2021, at 15:32, Tyler Wood <tcwood12@...> wrote:



Hi,

My $.02.

Part of my job involves meeting with customers and showing them, via my screen and audio, how my screen reader interacts with various content be it a website, an application, or something in between.

People don’t generally encounter blind or visually impaired individuals. Demanding that someone immediately cater to your needs without attempting to educate that person is worse than the person trying to help using visual landmarks. We are the minority. We must help educate, even if we want an issue fixed right away. You can do a great deal to broaden someone’s understanding of what you’re dealing with by attempting to explain where you are on the screen, what your screen reader is speaking, what you expect to happen and what is actually happening. Demanding that you want to speak to someone who can talk to you in nonvisual lingo isn’t helping anyone, least of all yourself, because that person will not be able to help the next person who comes along and does not get educated about how to go about conducting themselves with someone who can’t see. It’s a missed opportunity on both sides. You’d be surprised what doesn’t cross someone’s mind and they take for granted.

Is it frustrating? You bet it is. It’s also empowering to help someone understand alternate views on certain aspects of life in general, the issues faced with regards to accessibility and the methods in which they can be alleviated. Hint: yelling, screaming and demanding fixes nothing, apart from making companies less apt to work with us.

I think several also forget that, just because you’re calling the disability support line, doesn’t mean your disability is the only one out there. There are tons of others that are equally misrepresented or unaccounted for.

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of E.M. Kirtley
Sent: Saturday, March 6, 2021 4:11 PM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

I think what Mr. Lee was objecting to was the wording about going back to their own country,.  That was uncalled for. Not only that, most of the time the call is made to them in their country.   

 

Ms. E. Kirtley

 

 

 

From: Shirley Tracy
Sent: Saturday, March 6, 2021 12:02 PM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

I’ll put my 2 cents in just once here. Give them a break. Some people are partially sighted and the people helping don’t know who can see what. And they may ask to determine if you can see at all or if they need to describe differently. Also, I think people in general don’t think. Even my own friends forget I’m totally blind. They’ll tell me something is in the green bin or such and I have to say, “And which one is green?” It’s automatic for them.

I try not to embarrass them and just make a joke of it. But I do speak truth and often we have a good laugh. One time I got angry with a CSR rep on a website and I did say, “What about totally blind don’t you understand?” The woman apologized and I said, “It’s okay. You can still help me if you describe what you’re talking about.”

 

We do get too sensitive about things. And we need to be more up front with others. I don’t wave my blindness like a flag, but when they need to know, I tell them.

 

Shirley Tracy

 

From: Joseph Hudson
Sent: Saturday, March 6, 2021 2:44 PM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

Hi Marianne, I also have to work with a website that is supposed to be a company that works for the blind and visually impaired individuals. However, whenever you speak with their customer service, it's almost like talking to somebody who knows nothing about blind people. Anytime I ask them a question it's like what color was the screen or what color are the lines or do you see a orange box? I'm trying to explain to them that I am blind is like talking to a rock.

> On Mar 6, 2021, at 12:40 PM, Marianne Denning <marianne@...> wrote:

>

> I am totally 100% understanding when I am working with someone who knows nothing about blind people and how best to help us. I have a problem when someone works with a company who provides goods and services to blind people and asks me if there is a sighted person available. I am the market for these companies and their staff must know how to communicate with me in a nonvisual way. If that person can’t do it because they are new to their job they need to refer me to someone who can work with me.

> From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of Brian Vogel

> Sent: Saturday, March 6, 2021 12:40 PM

> To: main@jfw.groups.io

> Subject: Re: Need Microsoft Disability phone number!

> On Sat, Mar 6, 2021 at 12:25 PM, David Diamond wrote:

> There has to be a meeting in the middle though.

> -

> Oh, absolutely!   But that meeting in the middle, when you're the "exotic one" in a given situation, very often entails you educating the helper about certain things as they try to help you.

>

> There was a time when I didn't know diddly-squat about any form of assistive technology.  I learned based on the work I was doing and who I was doing it with.  Had I not needed (or chosen) to do that work with the populations I've worked with I would have absolutely no reason to know anything about it.  Every one of those populations are niche demographics.  The phrase "mainstream support" carries many shadings to the "mainstream" part.  If you are a part of any niche you had better disabuse yourself of the notion of "all things being equal, or even possibly ever being equal" with all possible haste.  And that's not because of malign intent, but because the capitalist system we live under means that businesses exist to make money, and the idea of "spending more than we get back" exists and not wanting to do that is perfectly legitimate.

>

> But even when I didn't know what I know now, I had occasion to work with a couple of folks who happened to be blind, and was able to assist them with technical problems.  I knew I couldn't use visual terms such as, "click on the red X," but I could use the more generic, "Close the window," or, "Exit the program."   I did, and should have been able to expect, that the exact how that was to be done would be known by the person being assisted.  I no sooner knew ALT+F4 than subatomic physics.

>

> Most support techs who want to be in the job will go as far as they possibly can if the other side is willing to meet in the middle.  The relationship between a sighted, but AT clueless support tech, and a blind client need not be adversarial.  When they give a visual instruction, which they will particularly before it sinks in that they can't, saying something like, "What is it that you're hoping will happen?," or, "What is it that you want me to accomplish?," will often get a response back that allows you to instantly know what you must do.

>

> There will always be idiots out there, and I'm not trying to defend them.  But it is every bit as much up to the blind client dealing with someone who does not know AT, and who is not remoted in to their machine so they can see what is going on (which, for obvious reasons, is how we with sight generally work), to help the person trying to help them when it comes to the AT side of things.  It also helps to understand that many of the signt-centric instructions are part of a script.  Far too many companies put the inexperienced on help lines and adamantly insist that they stick with the script, and when they don't know what they're doing, they have to.  It's the people who've been doing this for a while, and like doing it, who often relish being able to "step outside the box" when the opportunity presents itself.  Others, of course, will not, and if it quickly gets ugly then that's when the, "I wish to be put through to your supervisor," step gets taken, as many times as necessary and as many levels as necessary, to lodge a legitimate complaint.

> --

> Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 20H2, Build 19042

> One does not discover new lands without consenting to lose sight of the shore for a very long time.

>            ~ André Gide

>

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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 screen.

 

 

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.


moderated Re: Working with people at disability help desk

Richard B. McDonald
 

Indeed!

 

From: main@jfw.groups.io <main@jfw.groups.io> On Behalf Of Brian Vogel
Sent: Sunday, March 07, 2021 9:11 AM
To: main@jfw.groups.io
Subject: Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

On Sun, Mar 7, 2021 at 02:02 AM, David Diamond wrote:

implying the blind have a chip on their shoulder

-
Some do.  Note, I said some, but it becomes pretty obvious, pretty quickly, who falls into that demographic.  In my opinion, Mr. Spivey doesn't.

I have no compunction about saying that there are plenty of chips out there, and most are because the world is not exactly as they want it, and not only that, can't ever be as they want it.

There's a difference between trying to explain why things are the way they are, stating that further change is needed and can be made, but that the fantasy world that's being sought will never occur and saying, "Shut up and be happy with what you've got."

There really is a Grand Scheme of Things, and when you're part of a minority (mine happens to be being gay) you should learn very quickly that the world is never going to cater precisely as you might like to "your tribe" because "your tribe" is a very tiny part of the whole.  

It also helps to realize when "your tribe" has outsized influence relative to numbers.  And when it comes to the world of computing, accessibility, and the blind, the community's influence is hugely outsized compared to your actual numbers.  I've said before, and I'll say again, accessibility is not a money maker, at least not directly.  But the public relations benefits (and, lets admit this too, the penalties that would be incurred for saying "screw you, blind people" if you're a major in the business) for developing an accessibility focus and having dedicated support is huge.  Worth it's weight in gold in places where it can matter a lot, which is not with the general public, really, as prior comments in this topic clearly indicate.

That doesn't mean things are perfect, or cannot use a lot of improvement.  It does mean plaints about being ignored, no one caring about making things better, and the like are pure, unadulterated BS.  I lived through the periods in computing where accessibility wasn't even thought of, where it became grudgingly thought about as an after thought (at best) and badly reverse-engineered, became thought about at design (but infrequently), to the point where it is now taught as part of computer science programs and is built-in to most large scale newly developed software.  That's an absolutely tectonic shift.
 
--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 20H2, Build 19042  

To think is to differ.
      ~ Clarence Darrow


moderated Re: Working with people at disability help desk

 

On Sun, Mar 7, 2021 at 02:02 AM, David Diamond wrote:
implying the blind have a chip on their shoulder
-
Some do.  Note, I said some, but it becomes pretty obvious, pretty quickly, who falls into that demographic.  In my opinion, Mr. Spivey doesn't.

I have no compunction about saying that there are plenty of chips out there, and most are because the world is not exactly as they want it, and not only that, can't ever be as they want it.

There's a difference between trying to explain why things are the way they are, stating that further change is needed and can be made, but that the fantasy world that's being sought will never occur and saying, "Shut up and be happy with what you've got."

There really is a Grand Scheme of Things, and when you're part of a minority (mine happens to be being gay) you should learn very quickly that the world is never going to cater precisely as you might like to "your tribe" because "your tribe" is a very tiny part of the whole.  

It also helps to realize when "your tribe" has outsized influence relative to numbers.  And when it comes to the world of computing, accessibility, and the blind, the community's influence is hugely outsized compared to your actual numbers.  I've said before, and I'll say again, accessibility is not a money maker, at least not directly.  But the public relations benefits (and, lets admit this too, the penalties that would be incurred for saying "screw you, blind people" if you're a major in the business) for developing an accessibility focus and having dedicated support is huge.  Worth it's weight in gold in places where it can matter a lot, which is not with the general public, really, as prior comments in this topic clearly indicate.

That doesn't mean things are perfect, or cannot use a lot of improvement.  It does mean plaints about being ignored, no one caring about making things better, and the like are pure, unadulterated BS.  I lived through the periods in computing where accessibility wasn't even thought of, where it became grudgingly thought about as an after thought (at best) and badly reverse-engineered, became thought about at design (but infrequently), to the point where it is now taught as part of computer science programs and is built-in to most large scale newly developed software.  That's an absolutely tectonic shift.
 
--

Brian - Windows 10 Pro, 64-Bit, Version 20H2, Build 19042  

To think is to differ.
      ~ Clarence Darrow

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