The video below is from the Indian television station, NDTV and talks about the deafblind network set up in Delhi. Obviously, the issue of disability was on the air in response to it being World Disability Day. I have no doubt there are a lot opinions about the content of the piece and the perception and representation of people with disabilities. In fact, media and more accurate broader representations of disability is still a concern that is still unsolved and in many ways unaddressed in the United States.
One of the great benefits of video-sharing sites such as YouTube is that it offers an opportunity to see what is it that captures peoples imagination enough to post. Some of the disability videos are from networks or companies, such as this one. But many, the vast majority, come from individuals. What draws a person to post a specific video? What encourages others to seek it out or comment? What makes something go “viral?” What role does disability have in this new media? Or perhaps a better question is how can the disability community better take advantage of this new media?
It is not a matter of can or should, but of necessity. In Washington DC, many of the disability advocacy organizations are working towards ADA Restoration, but if one were to look at the YouTube coverage…other than a single video by a supporter, the only other footage is from the House Education and Labor Committee Hearing. (My appreciation to Ed and Labor Democrats for posting the clips).
Regardless, the video from India offers an opportunity to view the availability of resources and supports for individuals with disabilities in another nation, but also to see the media portrayals of those individuals. I only wish that I had footage from a U.S.-based event celebrating World Disability Day so that we might compare. It would certainly offer some food for thought.
A transcript of this video is available in the comments.