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RE: AOL drops e-mail address for accessibility

From: Andrew Kirkpatrick <andrew_kirkpatrick@wgbh.org>
Date: Sat, 27 Mar 2004 14:00:08 -0500
To: "'Kelly Pierce'" <kpierce2000@earthlink.net>, <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-Id: <E1B7J2O-0004P0-00@mynah.mail.pas.earthlink.net>

> **let's see what some of the problems have been in the last few days:
> 
> *e-mail bounces from highly publicized address specifically 
> established for accessibility.

Not a good thing, although it appears to be an isolated incident.
> 
> *No telephone contact on access issues if e-mail is inoperative

I'm not making excuses for AOL, but I see this more often all the time.
They do have telephone numbers for support on the same page as the email
address.  The numbers are more general, but they are listed on the
accessibility page, so one would hope that the operators are able to offer
help or a referral.
http://www.aol.com/accessibility/find_more_help/index.html

> *Highly publicized AOL accessibility website that speaks 
> mostly about the AOL online service and not other products 
> such as AIM or the AOL Radio product or AOL media player.

You're right, there could be better info there.

> *AOL Media Player help file that says nothing about accessibility.

Again, improvements are needed.

> Taken together, these items represent something more than an 
> isolated and specific issue.  considering the enormous 
> resources of Time Warner, the world's largest media and 
> entertainment company of which AOL is a part, we should have 
> a more coordinated and comprehensive response to accessibility.

There have been a few exchanges about this, and I feel like you have
clarified additional points that you may have had in mind when you stated
that AOL access was not a functioning concept.  I think that you have stated
the basis for your opinion much more clearly and with this additional
information people can better make up their own mind.  My reaction was to
the idea that an inaccessible embedded media player and a bounced email
equates to "AOL (or any company) doesn't care about accessibility".  It's
just not enough information.

AWK
Received on Saturday, 27 March 2004 14:00:09 UTC

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