February 1998

A publication of

December Communications, Inc.

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Computer-Mediated Communication Magazine
ISSN 1076-027X / Volume 5, Number 2 / February 1, 1998

Editor's Page
Jennifer Gold introduces this second special issue on disability and Computer-Mediated Communication as a follow-up to our January 1998 issue.


* Issues Related to Negative Communication on Disability-Related Listservs
Individuals with disabilities often lack the physical means to interact with others, especially individuals with disabilities. One way individuals with disabilities can interact with others who share similar concerns is through Listservs or computer-mediated social support groups. Although CMC can greatly contribute to the psychological and physical well-being of many individuals, Susan Fox points out the negative consequences.

* The uptake of CMC in the European Union among People with Disabilities
Carlos A. Velasco presents his view on the current uptake of new technologies in relation to individuals with disabilities and the Information Society in the European Union. He identifies various technologies' barriers to success through a brief analysis of the roles of each of the key players: individuals with disabilities, their immediate environment, their authorities, and the commercial side. In addition, he writes about the Information Society disAbilities Challenge (ISdAC), a newly initiative launch in Europe.

* Illustrating the Potential of an Online Workshop through a Case Study Example
The authors present a case study of an online workshop that was designed for educators who are involved in the selection of technology for students with disabilities. The online workshop was sponsored by the National Center to Improve Practice, a federally-funded project by the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Program. Conducted through the project's Web site using HyperNews conferencing software, the article describes how the workshop was designed, conducted, and evaluated.

* The Quest for Access to Science by People with Print Impairments
John Gardner describes a number of new technologies that provide alternatives to visual display of non-textual information that are useful for individuals with visual impairments and/or dyslexia. Founded by the author at Oregon State University after losing his sight ten years ago, these technologies were developed within the Science Access Project through a grant by the National Science Foundation.

* World Wide Web: The Spider and the Fly
Richard Banks and Norman Coombs suggest that the World Wide Web can be viewed in two ways: (1) as a tool connecting individuals and information or (2) as a fly trap for users with disabilities when inadequately designed. The article illustrates both kinds of Web pages and provides beginning guidelines for applying universal design principles to Web page development. It also provides links to relevant sources of information, including EASI (Equal Access to Software and Information) and the Web Accessibility Initiative.

Letters to the editor always welcome:

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