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Deaf and Hard of Hearing People Have a Tower of Babel with Video Communication Today!

tower of babel

“Therefore is the name of it called Babel; because the Lord did there confound the language of all the earth: and from thence did the Lord scatter them abroad upon the face of all the earth.”
—Genesis 11:4–9[2]

There is a petition going around circulated by Jon Ziev that urges the FCC to deal with the lack of interoperability in video communication. Here’s the link.

Dr. Z wants to commend Jon for taking this initiative. As of today, 832 people have signed on. We need to do more! Sign UP as Dr. Z just did just now! (link)

Ironically, in the United States today, hearing people can pick up their phone and call anyone without having to worry which software they need to use.

Deaf and hard of hearing people are stuck, we have to identify the software first before we make a call. If our friend or relative doesn’t have that software, we have to download it to make the call possible.

In the VRS world, we are pretty good at interoperability among the major players, with the possible exception of Sorenson. As the Gallaudet study indicates, there are still issues with interoperability today. Here’s the link to the Gallaudet study. More info can be found on this link as well.

We can’t use Facetime (Apple) to talk to Hangouts (Google). We can’t use Skype (Microsoft) to talk to Z5 (ZVRS). We can’t leave messages on the nTouch (Sorenson) videophones. That’s what the petition tries to point out. That is a Tower of Babel for us deaf and hard of hearing people.

Let us hope that the FCC takes up this issue and make us a unified community. This is starting to divide us as the Biblical verse indicates.

Thank you for listening.

By the way, if you need video communication (VP or VRS), why not try Z5, you will like it! Click here to get it! (See if you qualify to get a FREE tablet with a stand!)

Dr. Z is proud to be part of the team that understands and listens to the needs of the deaf and hard of hearing community!

Dr. Z cares about your communication access.

Disclosure: Dr. Z (Philip W. Bravin) is associated with CSDVRS, currently its Vice-President of Business Development

1 comment to Deaf and Hard of Hearing People Have a Tower of Babel with Video Communication Today!

  • Sheri A Farinha

    Well said Dr. Phil! Love the analogy. I hope this petition can reach the en masses out there, this tower of babel is what everyone needs!

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