OpenMarket.org advises us of yet another behind the scenes move by the current administration to control more stuff.
This time it’s blogging…
First Amendment Menace: Obama Administration to Expand Americans with Disabilities Act over Websites?
by HANS BADER
Can websites be forced to change to accommodate the disabled — by using “simpler language” to appeal to the “intellectually disabled,” or by making them accessible to the blind and deaf at considerable expense?
The key passage:
But now, the Obama administration appears to be planning to use the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to force many web sites to either accommodate the disabled, or shut down. Given the enormous cost of complying, many small web sites might well just go dark and shut down. The administration wants to treat web sites as “places of public accommodation“ subject to the ADA, even though they are not physical places. Courts used to reject this argument when it was made just by disabled plaintiffs, but now that the Justice Department is making it, too, some judges are beginning to buy it, opening the door to trial lawyers surfing the web and sending out extortionate demand letters to every small business whose web site is not accessible to the blind (or perhaps too hard to understand for the mentally-challenged).
Can you say government wholesale censorship? Sure you can. And I can, too, but perhaps not for long.