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Something To Laugh At, Something To Shake Your Head At

By January 15, 2010

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ADA and Movie Theaters

First, something to laugh at - it made me laugh during my lunch break: Hearinglosslaw.com published a humorous analysis of an important court case happening now in federal appeals court in San Francisco: a case that may determine whether the Americans with Disabilities Act in fact may mean that movie theaters have to provide captioning (via equipment). Highlights:

  • A judge compared the movie theater chain's weak argument (just come in and watch the movie) to carrying someone in a wheelchair up the steps.
  • Same judge remarked, "I wouldn't be surprised if in a few years, people are laughing at your argument."
  • Same judge also remarked, "...do the right thing instead of being jerks?"

The article also mentions the cost of 3D movie theater equipment and says captioning equipment costs are minimal in comparison. How much does 3D movie theater technology cost anyway? And I absolutely loved the ending of the article. Read it.

Guilty, Yes!

Next, something to shake your head at. This past week, the hottest news topic in the deaf and hard of hearing community was the pleading guilty of two me (Anthony Mowl and Donald Tropp) in the Viable VRS fraud case. These men, in a Department of Justice press release, admitted to being paid by the Yehs. I know that people are innocent until proven guilty, but if these two men are admitting to being paid by the Yehs, logically it follows that the Yehs are indeed guilty.

Now for the blog roundup:

  • The Deaf Sherlock: "Sadly to say that the case is looking worse than before now."
  • MishkaZena: "I'm extremely disappointed in Yeh and his cohorts. They did a lot of damage to the Deaf Community."
  • RLMDeaf: "former Viable employees seems get pretty harsh sentencings"
  • Fookem and Bug: wonders if the Yehs will plead guilty when it is their turn for trial.

Others also blogged, but did not express any opinions.

January 15, 2010 at 8:39 pm
(1) Rob G says:

That’s a pretty weak argument right there, “just come in and watch the movie.” Apparently they’re not thinking of a couple theatres I’ve seen that were quite inaccessible. But expecting deaf people to come in and see the movie without the captioning/subtitles? How about having us pay just 50% of the charge if not more? That is, suppose it’s $10 to see the movie. $2.50 or $5 could be more appropriate.

Someone send a congrats and/or thank you card to that judge. People need more judges that understand accessibility and how dangerous it can be to use the steps using a wheelchair. That plus how difficult it is for the deaf to watch a dialogue-laden movie. It’s possible, as some wheelchair users show in this page, including other wheelchair add-ons and devices to help with stairs in other circumstances;


Put those movie execs in a wheelchair or hearing-limiting device for a week and see how THEY feel after that time period. The judge’s parting shot was classic.

I’ve had to use a wheelchair what with my knee surgeries for long distances, and use a cane for shorter distances. Sometimes I wonder if Jamie or I have more fun when I use it.

January 15, 2010 at 11:25 pm
(2) Eddie Runyon says:

Hi Jamie, to answer your questions, the costs of converting to digital at the movie theater runs approximately 80-100 thousand dollars PER SCREEN. Making a screen compatible with 3D runs extra, something along the lines of $150,000 PER SCREEN (that is not extra, that is to be digital AND 3D compatible).

John from HearingLossLaw emailed me that before he posted it on his site, and I was amazed that a judge or judges have finally began to show some common sense about this issue.

June 19, 2010 at 3:03 pm
(3) tyler says:

Hell yeah haha

September 29, 2010 at 3:41 am
(4) Jens says:

I really enjoy reading from this website. It has been very informative and Iíve learned alot about this.

March 13, 2011 at 7:16 pm
(5) Book of Ra says:

It was really more like something to laugh about ;)

April 9, 2011 at 5:14 am
(6) Book of Ra spielen says:

I had a little smile :)

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