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FCC Seeks Comment on Waiving E-Reader Accessibility Rules

September 2014 – The FCC released a  Public Notice [CG Docket No. 10-213] seeking comment on the Coalition of E-Reader Manufacturers’ petition for an extension of the FCC’s waiver of accessibility rules for basic e-readers, stating that “e-readers are single-purpose reading devices that consumers use for accessing text-based works (i.e., reading), not for other purposes, such as ACS.”

The FCC had previously granted a waiver of ACS accessibility rules until January 28, 2015, for basic e-readers.  The class of basic e-readers defined in the waiver included all mobile electronic devices capable of accessing ACS, “designed primarily for the purpose of reading text-based digital works, such as books and periodicals, and meets each of the following requirements: 

  1. The device has no LCD screen, but rather utilizes a screen that is designed to optimize reading.
  2. The device has no camera.
  3. The device is not offered or shipped to consumers with built-in ACS client applications and the device manufacturer does not develop ACS applications for its respective device, but the device may be offered or shipped to consumers with a browser and social media applications.
  4. The device is marketed to consumers as a reading device and promotional material about the device does not tout the capability to access ACS.”

The deadline to submit comments is October 27, 2014, while reply comments are requested by November 5, 2014.

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The Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center for Wireless Technologies is sponsored by the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under grant number 90RE5007-01-00. The opinions contained in this website are those of the Wireless RERC and do not necessarily reflect those of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services or NIDILRR.