I’ve been so busy and also so uninterested in the Internet (me? really?) that I haven’t been keeping up with my reading. Andrew has said a great many things in the last few weeks all of which I want to blog. Since that would be silly, just follow the link to his site and go for it. I especially like the bits from Salon he quotes regarding how the disabled community reacts to the usual “pity” approach towards them.
To expand upon that, I have this anecdote. When the folks I work for got selected to re-do the disability.gov website, they tossed design over to me. Not really having a clue about this at all, I contacted various people I knew who might have a clue. Andrew gave me the best advice of everyone. He told me that the most important thing was to lose the graphic of the smiling people standing with the folks in wheel chairs. It was patronizing and just too much of the very thing he quotes in that Salon piece (go to his site and find it. It’s late. I’m too lazy to actually put the link here and I’m on a roll with this writing anyway).
I never thought about it like that. I was very surprised at his reaction and then I felt that click in my mind and realized he was dead on right. Interestingly, I’m just finishing up the redesign of my redesign which will be launched on October 16th and I’m looking at stock photography of, you guessed it, disabled people for a montage. Hey Andrew, want to help me keep this one from being just as bad? (I’m not putting any smiling “service providers” in the montage if that helps 🙂