Access to information and knowledge is a basic human right and a necessary first step towards personal, economic, and social development. Yet around the world, over 100 million individuals are denied this basic right. They include people who are blind, visually impaired, have dyslexia, or have a physical disability that prevents them from reading regular […]
The World Blind Union’s (WBU) Right to Read campaign for ratification of the Marrakesh Treaty just concluded two days of meetings in Berlin, Germany. The attendees were mostly the regional coordinators of the campaign, and the news was good. I found the optimism exciting: it seems like we’re moving quickly to getting twenty countries to ratify the Treaty. It even seems likely that it could happen in 2015!
The Road to Accessibility without Borders: Celebrating the One-Year Anniversary of the Marrakesh Treaty
One year ago, on June 28, 2013, at a diplomatic conference in Marrakesh, Morocco, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) agreed on a historic international copyright exception for people with print disabilities, known as the Marrakesh Treaty. We certainly have plenty to celebrate on the first anniversary of the signing of the Treaty, but the road towards equal accessibility for all is still long and there is much that remains to be done. Access to written materials and education is not a privilege, but a basic human right—fundamental to personal, economic, and social development. I hope you join us as we advance this global right and work towards making the Marrakesh Treaty as successful as possible, so that it can empower people with print disabilities—particularly those in developing countries—live fuller lives based on equal access to knowledge.
This is an excellent Treaty. The Benetech team is delighted by its adoption today. We have the technology, we have the content, and now we have the legal framework to make it possible for every person with a print disability on the planet to get access to the books they need for education, employment and social inclusion!