[Missouri-l] Fwd: [acb-l] [leadership] Let the FCC hear from you
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terrieiphone at gmail.com
Tue Jul 3 17:23:39 CDT 2012
Begin forwarded message:
From: peter altschul <paltschul at centurytel.net>
Date: July 3, 2012 4:50:49 PM CDT
To: Acb-l <acb-l at acb.org>
Subject: [acb-l] [leadership] Let the FCC hear from you
---- Original Message ------
From: Marlaina Lieberg <1guidedog at gmail.com
Subject: [leadership] Let the FCC hear from you
Date sent: Tue, 3 Jul 2012 13:47:07 -0700
Hello all. Please read and feel free to share:
On June 21, 2012, the FCC released a public notice requesting comment on a petition filed by the National Cable & Telecommunications Association (NCTA), which request that the Commission waive its rules requiring advanced communications services (ACS) and equipment to be accessible by people with disabilities.
NCTA requests a waiver for set-top boxes leased by cable operators to their customers and manufactured before July 1, 2016.
This is a matter that needs your immediate attention. The NCTA is requesting a waiver from the current provisions of the Communications and Video Accessibility Act which require that set-top boxes which offer advanced communication systems, i.e e-mail, skype-to-skype, etc. be made accessible by October 1, 2013. Instead, they are asking for July 1, 2016 as a finish date.
NCTA argues that provision of advanced communication services is not the main function of the cable set-top box. At the end of this post, you will find a quote from their waiver introduction. We need to respond that if the box has advanced communication capabilities for those with sight, those services must be equally provided for those with limited or no sight.
While you may not now have, use or need access to advanced communication systems, this avenue of electronic communications is the way of the future; granting of this waiver will represent a chink in the armor of protection and accessibility mandated by the Communications and Video Accessibility Act as it currently stands. Believe me when I tell you, industry does not want to comply with many of the provisions of this Act, and will continue to try to erode our rights and protections one waiver request at a time.
The NCTA is a huge industry with a lot of money behind it. We as the blind community absolutely must now all speak out against granting the waiver they request.
I will help you file comments if you are unable to do so on your own. We absolutely must make our voices heard.
The comments do not need to be long and fancy. They do need to include your name and address, and email address. Using phrases such as "why must blind Americans always be playing catch-up when we live in the most technologically advanced country in the world" or "this waiver, if granted, will further cement the status of blind people as second class citizens" or "this industry has shown little faith and desire to move forward with accessibility; the Commission must hold their feet to the fire and stand firmly by the mandates of the CVAA." Tell your story, tell how this waiver request makes you feel. The way of the future will be internet activity delivered via your set-top box; we absolutely must speak out now on this.
If you need assistance to comment, please e-mail me your comments, including your name, address and e-mail address. Do not write to me, write as though you are e-mailing the FCC directly. I'm willing to forward each one through the electronic filing system, but I don't want to have to edit your private comments directed to me. My email is 1guidedog at gmail.com
If you want to file on your own, and I encourage that you try before asking for assistance, here are some step-by-step instructions that should help you do so.
You will need this number; I refer to it as the docket number, but it will go into a box called proceedings number.
1. Go to
2. On that page, you will see a number of links and a table which contains a calendar. Do a search for the words docket number. That should take you to a sentence that says, "If the docket you're looking for is not listed, click here to manually enter your docket number on the upload page." the term "click here" is hyperlinked to the form for filing brief comments, so click on that phrase.
3. Now you are on the actual page where you can file your comments. Do a search for the term "proceeding number"; it is a level 3 heading. Once you find that, locate the edit box and in that box, type 10-213. Then, tab along and fill out the information they request which includes your name, address, e-mail address, etc.
4. Once you have filled out the details fields, you are in the edit box to type your comments. You may wish to type them ahead of time in the word processor of your choice, then simply copy and paste them into this edit box.
5. Tab to continue and click that button.
6. Now you are on a page where you can modify or confirm your submission. If you are sure you have all the fields filled out and your comments are as you want them, search for confirm and click it; or, if you need to do some editing, search for modify.
I hope these instructions will help you to be a voice in advocating for our continued equality on the digital playing field. I cannot request your participation strongly enough The industry is big and rich; we need every voice raised from our community regarding this and other waivers that will certainly be requested by the industry in the near future. Please raise your voice!
Excerpt from CTVA Waiver Introduction:
CABLE OPERATOR-SUPPLIED SET-TOP BOXES QUALIFY AS A DISTINCT
CLASS OF DEVICES
The ACS waiver standard under the statute and the Commission’s rules requires that
waiver be applicable to a “carefully defined” class of devices that “share common
characteristics.” Cable operator supplied set-top boxes satisfy this standard. Specifically, set- top boxes are standalone devices that are primarily designed to convert the video signals delivered by cable systems to consumers’ homes and transmit the converted signal to television sets or other display devices for viewing. These devices typically are manufactured by third- party vendors, including, but not limited to, Motorola Mobility, Cisco, and Pace, and leased to end-user customers by the respective cable operator.
The Commission is familiar with cable operator-supplied set-top boxes and the “common characteristics” that they share as a class. Set-top boxes are a form of “navigation device,” which the Commission has defined as “devices…used by consumers to access multichannel video programming and other services offered over multichannel video programming systems.”
Set-top boxes, as defined for purposes of this request, include limited functionality
devices, such as digital transport adapters, as well as more advanced devices that can support, among other things, video-on-demand and digital video recording capabilities.
Importantly, this request is time-limited in that it will not apply to set-top boxes
manufactured after July 1, 2016. The development, manufacturing, and deployment cycle for set-top boxes typically lasts approximately six years, consisting of approximately two to three years of development work plus approximately three years of manufacturing and deployment of the devices. For example, devices that cable operators will begin deploying to customers later
this year have been in development since at least 2010, and likely will be deployed to customers until early 2016. Set-top box manufacturers and cable operators will soon turn to the task of developing the next generation of set-top boxes – devices that we can expect to see deployed sometime in mid-2016.
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