Barrier-free access should have long been a standard for modern technologies, in the Internet as well as with mobile phones. But are these media actually able to meet this requirements in the real world? Telefónica o2 Germany and UPJ have extended an invitation to discuss about current handicapped-accessible technologies such as mobile phones and the Internet on www.diskutiere.de.
The focus will be on the question: “How do modern telecommunications influence the social integration of people with disabilities?” While the technologies are not designed for the specific requirements of this target group, they are already prepared to improve communication capabilities.
For most people, mobile phones and the Internet have become a part of their daily lives. But what about people with disabilities? Are they excluded from social developments because they are not able to use the new technologies? Or are they enabled to use completely new information offerings, have more possibilities to express themselves and can even benefit from better networking with other people? o2 wants to find out more about the requirements, needs and problems of people with disabilities with respect to the currently available means of communication.
“As a responsible telecommunication company, we want that people with disabilities can also leverage digital communication offerings,” says Stephan Becker-Sonnenschein, Vice President Corporate Communications at Telefónica o2 Germany. “We are interested in a dedicated dialog with the people concerned as well as experts and interested individuals in order to find out what the telecommunication industry can do to optimize the usage of media for this target group.”
Everyone is invited to take part in the discussion, whether as a person concerned, representative, family member, colleague, employer or simply interested party. Expert contributions, downloads, links and a small survey supplement the discussion and support the opinion-making process. The online debate takes place on www.diskutiere.de, UPJ’s platform for the discussion of topics around the social responsibility of companies, initiated by o2.
The discussion will be open from October 26 to December 31, 2009. The contributions will subsequently be evaluated by UPJ and further expanded by experts and parties concerned.