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Re: [Fsfe-uk] Smile to become accessible with free software, perhaps

From: Philip Hands
Subject: Re: [Fsfe-uk] Smile to become accessible with free software, perhaps
Date: Thu, 09 Sep 2004 00:38:05 +0100
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Tom Chance wrote:
On Wednesday 08 Sep 2004 21:33, MJ Ray wrote:

Well we discussed this briefly before, but maybe it would be a good idea to use the Co-Op as a target for the first open information campaign? If we can get them to ensure that all of their web sites are free software friendly and only use open technologies then it would be both a worthwhile win and a good rallying call for future campaigns.

I'm a business customer of the co-op, and as you can see from from going to their "Your-Accounts/Business-Banking" section (from www.co-operativebank.co.uk) they've had a bit of trouble with their recent attempt to roll-out a new service, given that they've had to postpone the switch-over from April until (currently) the end of October.

I mailed them pointing out that their new Acumen service was tied to software supplied by a repeat convicted monopolist, and that given that the reason I banked with them was because I'm committed to ethical business standards I'd be moving my account if they insisted that I use non-free software to access their site (with relevant background to explain my position).

I got a reply assuring me that in response to customer comments they were re-tooling to ensure that they had a plain HTML site that would be accessible to all.

If that actually happens, I think we should do what we can to praise them for it, and so help embarrass others into following suit.

Another lever that is possible to apply to this is the fact that discriminating against the disabled is now illegal for organisations that provide a service to the general public, and chances are that flash encumbered sites are totally useless to anyone with sight difficulties.

Cheers, Phil.

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