The Digital Divide of Disability

Friday, May 21, 2010


Knowbility is an organization that advocates for technology that allows blind, deaf and otherwise disabled people to use the net. Knowbility’s Sharron Rush and Desiree Sturdevant talk about the challenges they face in raising awareness and changing the laws surrounding online usability.

Comments [8]

Beth Watson

Fun to hear my Knowbility friends on OTM!! A great segment on a great topic! Very valuable.

Jun. 03 2010 02:05 PM
Jake Joehl from Illinois

Thank you so much for airing this segment! My brother forwarded it to me a few days ago. I am blind and work for a nonprofit organization called JJ's List. We have a website where people with and without disabilities review the disability awareness of various services and businesses. Check us out at . We now have a link to the segment with Sharon and Desiree.

Jun. 02 2010 03:22 PM
Aaron Parker-Fasel from Austin, TX


I'd encourage anyone to subscribe to the OTM podcast (I do it on iTunes). It's a fantastic show. I think of it as "The Daily Show" but not a comedy. It's funny . . . sardonic even . . . but not a comedy like TDS on Comedy Central.

May. 25 2010 11:05 PM
Desiree Sturdevant from Austin TX

It was a privilege and honor to be part of such a prestigious show! It is always a great victory when we can bring attention and awareness to the issue of web and overall technology accessibility! Definitely check out the Knowbility blog and learn about how accessibility effects everyone!, whether or not you currently have a disability. And please help me generate discussion on that forum!! Read and comment to your heart's content! I really look forward to making some new friends and fellow accessibility advocates!

May. 25 2010 06:07 PM
Aaron Parker-Fasel from Austin, TX

As an avid listener to OTM (I've missed not one episode since 2006-ish), I was tickled to hear the Knowbility folks on your show last week.

My nonprofit organization has always had a strong belief in inclusion when it comes to children and recreation, although it is not a "camp for kids with disabilities."

As such, a few years ago we found about about a program Knowbility puts on that, in short, creates free web design for nonprofit organizations. The sites HAPPEN to be accessible sites, but that is in no way a hindrance to the site itself. In fact most people love our site and have no clue that it was designed with accessibility features.

the program is AIR-Austin and I encourage anyone out there to check it out at

At the risk of seeming self serving, if you want to see a good looking site that happens to be accessible, check out our site at . It is a direct result of AIR-Austin and is a fantastic program indeed!

May. 25 2010 04:52 PM
Sharron Rush from Austin Texas

Desiree will post our piece to her blog And for more information about Knowbility programs, please write to us knowbility at knowbility dot org.

The broadcast included a fascinating interview on the cognitive differences in learning between blind readers who use Braille and those who rely solely on audio. And there was another great piece about accessible gaming and the Able Gamer initiative.

Thanks very much for your interest, we would be thrilled to help with your research.

May. 24 2010 08:32 AM
Erin Garlinghouse from Butte MT

I would like to link this piece to FB so that non listeners will see/hear it. It was very interesting!! Also how can I get more information about the content?

May. 23 2010 09:26 PM
Marisa Castagno from New York

I am a PhD student at the University of Turin, Italy, but I currently live and work in New York City. My field of research is the digital divide and I will be writing my dissertation on American and Italian university students digital divide. A friend of mine has told me about your program. I had not thought about considering digital divide in a disability context, but I am now looking into to incorporate this in my research and would welcome any comments or suggestions. Thank you!

PS I was told me that the radio segment lasted 1 full hour. Is there a way I could get the entire segment?

May. 23 2010 09:17 PM

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