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Archive for May, 2009

Concerns About More Print Restriction

Posted in general on May 29th, 2009 by admin

(Update at end of post.)

You know that I don’t usually post something not directly related to what I do here, but there’s a matter that has come up which could be a concern to listeners who are blind, have vision impairments or other kinds of restrictions from reading print.

If you are one of those listeners, it’s possible you have been able to get accessible versions of text (books, magazines, etc.) because of certain copyright exemptions within your country. Not everyone in the world has access to those materials, because their respective countries may not produce them. Earlier this week at the 18th Session of the WIPO Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights (WIPO being the United Nations’ World Intellectual Property Organization), the governments of Brazil, Ecuador and Paraguay introduced a proposal for a treaty which would allow those materials to be more easily imported and exported, so more people around the world can have access to them. More information on this treaty can be found here.

Okay, this sounds great. But in the negotiations about the treaty going on as I write this, government representatives of many of the richer countries – including the U.S., Canada, Australia and countries of the European Union – are fighting to have this treaty killed, on the basis of protecting copyright owners. This is a similar rationale to the Writers Guild in the U.S. lobbying to disable the speech-to-text feature in the new Kindle (more information on that here), but taken to a more basic and global level.

Activists at this WIPO meeting are doing their best to inform as many people as possible about what’s going on here, acknowledging the dangerous precedent it sets for rights to print accessibility. The matter was initially brought to my attention by Cory Doctorow, writing this post this morning on BoingBoing, which referred to this post by one of the activists on site. If these issues are of concern to you, you may want to read this information and pass it along to anyone you think may also be interested.

Again, I’m sorry to take this blog out of the usual realm into something more like advocacy, but this seemed like an especially important matter to many members of the audience, and the call for more restriction has gained a momentum that I feel needs to be met with louder calls from those affected.

Thanks for getting through this. Back to the show… :-)

Update: The WIPO has made a decision to carry over discussion of the treaty to the next session of the Committee, with time and place yet to be determined. This means the treaty has not been killed, but has not yet been approved either. The official conclusions have been posted here. This gives anyone concerned with these issues time to build support for the next round – and to take a hard look at the governments that were fighting to have the treaty killed. Thanks again.

Video Update

Posted in general on May 26th, 2009 by admin

By popular demand, there are more videos available in the “Video Available” category, for friends and family of varying vision abilities to watch together or for people with sight to learn more about how description is done.

(If you’re on a screen reader, get ready for lots of links…)

The Andy Griffith Show’s “High Noon In Mayberry” (featured in Episode 61) now has its own described video version, available at Internet Archive, YouTube (as a three-part playlist), Myspace and Blip.tv. Episode 37’s Dick Van Dyke Show, “A Man’s Teeth Are Not His Own,” has also been added to Myspace, as has our first Dick Van Dyke video, “Give Me Your Walls” (from Episode 36), which you can find at Myspace here.

If your favourite video site hasn’t been listed here, it’s still possible you can find Movies For the Blind videos there. I’ve uploaded to various places, so go to the site of your choice and search with those show titles – you just might find something. Wherever you watch/listen to the videos, please feel free to share!

Episode 81 – Love Affair part 1

Posted in comedy, drama, romance on May 25th, 2009 by admin

A French womanizing artist (Charles Boyer) meets his match in an American former nightclub singer (Irene Dunne) on a ship bound for New York and the people they’re supposed to marry. 1939. Part 1 of 3.

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Click here to download directly
Different file sizes/formats from Internet Archive

Associated links
Original movie from Internet Archive
Movie info from IMDB
Feature @TCM
An Affair to Remember @IMDB
Sleepless in Seattle @Wikipedia
Maria Ouspenskaya @Wikipedia

Episode 80 – Sheriff of Tombstone pt. 2

Posted in western on May 18th, 2009 by admin

Secret identities are found out, forcing Brett (Roy Rogers) to work in secret to band together the mine owners of the region to help the Carsons and set up a trap for Keeler and Slade.

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Different file sizes/formats from Internet Archive
(note: this episode’s description can be synced to video)

Associated links
City of Tombstone Official Site
Tombstone, Arizona @Wikipedia

Episode 79 – Sheriff of Tombstone pt. 1

Posted in western on May 11th, 2009 by admin

A sheriff (Roy Rogers) retires and moves to a new town, only to be mistaken for a notorious gunslinger recruited as the new sheriff by the corrupt mayor. 1941.

Click here to subscribe
Click here to download directly
Different file sizes/formats from Internet Archive

Associated links
Original movie from Internet Archive (note: this episode’s description can be synced to video)
Movie info from IMDB
GabbyHayes.Org
Gabby Hayes @Wikipedia

Episode 78 – Slightly Honorable part 2

Posted in comedy, crime, drama, mystery on May 4th, 2009 by admin

As John (Pat O’Brien) keeps dodging the police, one fleeting clue reveals the murder is connected to another murder committed decades ago.

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Click here to download directly
Different file sizes/formats from Internet Archive

Associated links
Broderick Crawford @Wikipedia
Highway Patrol tribute site
Our Miss Brooks @Internet Archive
Our Miss Brooks @Old Time Radio