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Hearing Aid Compatibility: New Captioning Bill Introduced

A bill championed by Sen. Mark Pryor (D-AR) and Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) aims to make the Internet more accessible for people who are deaf or blind.  

Introduced May 4, 2010, the Equal Access to the 21st Century Communications Act (S. 3304), would require smartphones to be hearing aid-compatible, require online streaming television content to include closed captioning and video descriptions, and require video devices including DVRs and MP3 players to support closed captioning.  

“It's been twenty years since the Americans with Disabilities Act knocked down barriers to employment and government services – and now it's time to do the same thing online," Kerry stated in an official press release.  

“Our bill will make sure that millions of Americans with disabilities – including our returning service members – will benefit from the economic, social, and political opportunities that modern communications and the Internet make possible.”

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