Using Your Civic Sense
Whether Barack Obama wins the Presidency or not, he has already made history.
On February 10th of 2007, Barack Obama announced his campaign for the Presidency. He was speaking before a crowd in Springfield, Illinois. But thanks to 21st Century technology, the entire nation can watch the full speech - unfiltered by the news media or pundits - simply by logging on to Obama's Web site. This includes citizens who are deaf and hard-of-hearing, since the speech is closed-captioned.
Obama was the first Presidential candidate to caption videos on his Web site.
Several others in the race quickly followed suit, though not all of them. And none of the candidates has captioned every video posted online.
This is just one example of how the deaf and hard-of-hearing are unable to fully participate as American citizens -- even in this era of amazing technological advances that give us access to more information about candidates, campaigns, and issues than ever before in the history of mankind.
This blog is going to serve as a testing ground for using Web-based technology to get information or analysis about Election 2008. We are selecting a handful of regular bloggers who are deaf or hard-of-hearing to wander around the Web and share their experiences, both good and bad. We hope this will generate a lot of discussion in the deaf and hard-of-hearing community about what works, and what doesn't.
We'll take what you have to say, and try to find ways to make improvements that all public broadcasters can incorporate into their own Web strategies - to the benefit of every deaf and hard-of-hearing person with a Civic Sense.