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Amazon Will Partner With Advocacy Group To Make Its E-Readers More Accessible To The Blind

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thekellyscope
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Blind people say Amazon's Kindle devices and apps lack functions that they need.

For years, the National Federation of the Blind has been pressuring Amazon to make its devices and apps fully accessible to the blind. They even staged a protest outside Amazon headquarters three years ago.

Now, the organization says it’s reached an agreement to work together with Amazon to make sure blind students are able to fully use Kindle content.

“We’re going to have regular meetings with Amazon about these matters and we have a forum to give Amazon feedback and escalate issues that we’re concerned about,” said Chris Danielsen, a spokesman for the National Federation of the Blind.

Danielsen says his group wants to make sure that blind students can easily jump back and forth between pages and access footnotes in the same way that other students can.

Amazon has been taking steps in recent years to improve accessibility of its Kindle products. In 2013, the company made it possible for people reading Kindle books on their iPhones and other Apple devices to convert text into speech.

In July 2017, Ashley Gross became KNKX's youth and education reporter after years of covering the business and labor beat. She joined the station in May 2012 and previously worked five years at WBEZ in Chicago, where she reported on business and the economy. Her work telling the human side of the mortgage crisis garnered awards from the Illinois Associated Press and the Chicago Headline Club. She's also reported for the Alaska Public Radio Network in Anchorage and for Bloomberg News in San Francisco.