Thursday, October 26, 2006

Well, some of our readers are flying blind

The Whiner Community files another lawsuit to get things the way they think they ought to be:

In the case of the National Federation of the Blind v. Target, Judge Marilyn Hall Patel ruled that retailers can be sued if their websites are not accessible to the blind. In her opinion for the US District Court for the Northern District of California, Patel wrote that "the 'ordinary meaning' of the ADA's prohibition against discrimination in the enjoyment of goods, services, facilities or privileges, is that whatever goods or services the place provides, it cannot discriminate on the basis of disability in providing enjoyment of those goods and services."

Target had argued that its websites were not covered by the provisions of the ADA, only its physical stores. ....

The issue of website accessibility is not a new one. A few years ago, the National Federation for the Blind sued AOL, but the case never went to trial as AOL agreed to make its sites fully navigable for the visually impaired.

....NFB v. Target appears to be the first case in which a judge has ruled that the ADA covers a web site in addition to meatspace locations. So does this mean that every website in the US, including your blog, needs to be fully ADA-compliant? Mazen M. Basrawi, Equal Justice Works Fellow at Disability Rights Advocates, thinks so. He believes that the ruling requires that "any place of public accommodation is required to ensure that it does not discriminate when it uses the internet as a means to enhance the services it offers at a physical location."

No comments: