[nfb-talk] Losing DVS

T. Joseph Carter carter.tjoseph at gmail.com
Sat Jan 17 01:50:23 UTC 2009

I disagree, in part.  The NFB has a responsibility to represent both its 
membership and the best interests of the blind in America.

As such, the organization has a responsibility promote that the RIGHT thing 
be done, not just that something be done.  In the case of descriptive 
video, the RIGHT thing is not a blind mandate, no pun intended, but rather 
careful consideration of what should be done and how before doing it.

This issue is just an excuse for John to dredge up his laundry list of 
reasons why the NFB is so horrible and he is the only sane person here (and 
therefore we should all admit the NFB is wrong and side with him.)  I've 
stopped playing that game with him, I don't like the rules.  If he wants 
blind action without consideration of consequences, there is an 
organization out there that will be happy to serve him and join him in 
mindless NFB bashing.  He already has some affiliation with it, in fact.


On Fri, Jan 16, 2009 at 04:16:25PM -0500, Wm. Ritchhart wrote:
>The NFB has an obligation to represent it's members.  It does that.  It
>has no responsibility to represent you.  
>Even members do not always get their wishes represented.  As NFB is a
>DEMOCRACY.  So the majority rules.  You might understand that fact if
>you ever bestirred yourself to attend an NFB convention.  
>-----Original Message-----
>From: nfb-talk-bounces at nfbnet.org [mailto:nfb-talk-bounces at nfbnet.org]
>On Behalf Of John G. Heim
>Sent: Friday, January 16, 2009 9:32 AM
>To: NFB Talk Mailing List
>Subject: Re: [nfb-talk] Losing DVS
>The NFB has a responsibility to represent the needs of blind people, not
>government, not tax payers, not TV and movie producers.
>It's fine with me if you want to believe in social Darwinism. But the
>has a responsibility to represent blind people as a whole. It's
>for you or the NFB to impose your own political philosophy on blind
>as a whole.
>----- Original Message ----- 
>From: "T. Joseph Carter" <carter.tjoseph at gmail.com>
>To: "NFB Talk Mailing List" <nfb-talk at nfbnet.org>
>Sent: Thursday, January 15, 2009 7:16 PM
>Subject: Re: [nfb-talk] Losing DVS
>> It is my opinion that the NFB is not responsible for others making
>> based on what we have said.
>> For example, I say that it should not be mandatory to wear a seatbelt
>in a 
>> car.  My justifications are that the government has no business
>telling me 
>> what I must or must not do to secure my own safety, and the basic 
>> Darwinian principle that if people choose to place themselves at
>> risk of dying in the event of an accident, this takes them out of the
>> pool.
>> If car makers respond to my statement that seatbelts should be
>optional by 
>> saying that they won't provide seatbelts in new cars, should I be held
>> responsible for their decision?  What about if I were part of an 
>> organization that advocates for safety on the road?
>> I do happen to hold this view: It should not be illegal to choose not
>> wear a seatbelt in a car.  Of course, if you're pulled over for
>> and your kids aren't seatbelted in, you may possibly be guilty of
>> endangerment or something.  But that's neither here nor there--it
>> not be mandatory.  I do wear mine, however.
>> DVS is not significantly different.  The NFB found it premature to
>make it 
>> mandatory without even considering WHAT exactly to make mandatory, if
>> where it would be useful, and establishing some standards and
>> for audio description.
>> Do you watch the evening news?  Without closed captioning, a deaf
>> cannot.  A blind person, however, needs no audio description
>> for the evening news.  What would you describe, and how?  There are 
>> sometimes short segments that could be described.  Many receivers
>> one or two SAP channels.  Many more are possible with the digital 
>> transition.  Could not one of these be standardized as the DVS
>> Those who need it should be able to acquire the means to support the 
>> appropriate channel.
>> Once some headway is made in other areas, regulation may make sense. 
>> Until then, there are questions that John and his friends do not
>> The way to make the headway is to incentivize the development.
>> took the cheap out in saying that if the NFB doesn't think it should
>> mandatory that they shouldn't do it because it wasn't worth anything
>> them to spend the money.  Make it worthwhile to help blaze the trail
>> set the standards, and watch how quickly they react then!
>> At that point, regulation would codify existing best practice, rather
>> becoming another unfunded mandate to "do something about this
>> I supported the recent telecom accessibility act.  I think regulating
>> at this time is putting the cart before the horse, but the act was too
>> important otherwise to be ignored.  I encouraged other Federationists
>> support it, and I know that many did.
>> I was saddened that the national office did not take interest in the 
>> legislation, but I understand why they did not--other than giving the
>> the right to mandate DVS without considering the problem first, it
>> really pertain to blindness.  I think sometimes that we get too caught
>> in our own disability and fail to recognize that there are other 
>> disabilities out there and we all face institutionalized exclusion 
>> practices.  If we can help end that in some way, we should.
>> We could have also used the opportunity to encourage the FCC to work
>> determine best practices and standards for DVS so that they may make
>> informed decision about what to regulate and when, once given the
>power to 
>> do so.  I consider that an opportunity missed.
>> Joseph
>> On Thu, Jan 15, 2009 at 02:11:51PM -0500, Joel Zimba wrote:
>>> let me get this straight:
>>> to re-cap
>>> a gentleman posts saying that a service he enjoys is going away.  He 
>>> also says that the NFB is in part responsible for this.
>>> 2.
>>> Another chap posts that he is wrong and can read about why he is
>>> in the organizations newsletters.
>>> 3.
>>> The original statements of gentleman A are all confirmed to be true.
>>> 4.
>>> As a rhetorical debate point, Gentleman C. reminds A that it is
>>> his opinion that the services should be mandatory.
>>> Isn't it just opinion that these services should NOT be mandatory on
>>> part of others?
>>> confused,
>>> Joel
>>> _______________________________________________
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>>> nfb-talk at nfbnet.org
>>> http://www.nfbnet.org/mailman/listinfo/nfb-talk_nfbnet.org
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