What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

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boblipton

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What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostWed Oct 11, 2017 5:24 am

Reversing a trial court, the Third Circuit has ruled that a deaf/blind man can sue Cinemark under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) demanding that it provide a “tactile interpreter” so that he could experience the movie Gone Girl. Each interpreter — two would be required because of the movie’s feature length — would narrate the film in American Sign Language (ASL) while McGann placed his hand in contact with theirs to read the signs.


https://www.overlawyered.com/2017/10/third-circuit-oks-ada-suit-demanding-tactile-interpreter-deafblind-movie-patron/

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Last edited by boblipton on Wed Oct 11, 2017 7:28 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Does "Reasonable Accomodation" Include Providing Each D

PostWed Oct 11, 2017 7:19 am

I'll let you erase this if you wish.

This is the definition of bullshit, the absolute dissolving of common sense in America. Why doesn't the person simply rent the film and have someone in the comfort of ---- do the same thing. Does a producer now have to pay for new kind of theater attendant? Or two?
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostWed Oct 11, 2017 8:06 am

The San Francisco Silent Film Festival provides a sign language interpreter onstage for those who are hard of hearing sitting near the front to understand what speakers are saying.
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostWed Oct 11, 2017 8:10 am

Well, note that they didn't rule he was entitled to such a thing— he was entitled to have his case proceed. Which means they didn't find technical fault with his right to sue over this issue, not that they agreed with his case.
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostWed Oct 11, 2017 8:15 am

Ever been sued, Mike?

Bob
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostWed Oct 11, 2017 9:05 am

Mike Gebert wrote:"case proceed"

$20,000 even for less than an hour in some cases...I know people - unfortunately, as I get older and think back (or forward, for that matter) - who make their livings on "case proceed", even when their client loses...
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What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostWed Oct 11, 2017 9:40 am

http://www.pennlive.com/news/2017/10/blind_deaf_patron_denied_inter.html
“As Judge L. Felipe Restrepo noted in the appeals court ruling, McGann wanted to see the film in a Cinemark theater in the western part of the state because it had already left the theater he normally attended.
His regular theater provided him with a tactile interpreter, who translated movies for him by American Sign Language using touch. His wife did that for McGann until her death in 2001, Restrepo noted.”


I’m sure no one would want to deprive a disabled person from seeking a legal solution to a problem unlikely to be addressed by the executive or legislative branches. But what is the plaintiff really after?
Without commenting upon the merits of the case, one can still wonder all sorts of things...
How was the plaintiff’s regular movie house able to provide/afford a tactile interpreter? Is this suit one where a cash settlement would provide complete satisfaction for the aggrieved party, or, was it brought, in part, in an attempt to change the national exhibition policies of the studios and theatre chains? Is it not fair to ask why all new DVD/Blu-Ray releases aren’t captioned, and why all theatres don’t provide some sort of captioning- perhaps via smartphone apps ?
Last edited by JFK on Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostWed Oct 11, 2017 10:26 am

Well, yes, Bob, I understand that it's also "you have the right to keep trying to get a large cash settlement from the defendant for a little while longer."
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Re: Does "Reasonable Accomodation" Include Providing Each D

PostWed Oct 11, 2017 1:32 pm

R Michael Pyle wrote:I'll let you erase this if you wish.

This is the definition of bullshit, the absolute dissolving of common sense in America. Why doesn't the person simply rent the film and have someone in the comfort of ---- do the same thing. Does a producer now have to pay for new kind of theater attendant? Or two?


It does beggar belief, as if the person is question is both blind and deaf, why he / she shouldn't just be able to read the screenplay (both dialogue and description) in Braille...

A little while ago, I suffered temporary hearing problems, which were solved on the film front by watching silents for a while, but it does seem odd to attend a film which you are unable to appreciate for physical reasons.
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Re: Does "Reasonable Accomodation" Include Providing Each D

PostWed Oct 11, 2017 1:48 pm

earlytalkiebuffRob wrote:
R Michael Pyle wrote:I'll let you erase this if you wish.

This is the definition of bullshit, the absolute dissolving of common sense in America. Why doesn't the person simply rent the film and have someone in the comfort of ---- do the same thing. Does a producer now have to pay for new kind of theater attendant? Or two?


It does beggar belief, as if the person is question is both blind and deaf, why he / she shouldn't just be able to read the screenplay (both dialogue and description) in Braille...

Do ya think???!!!
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostWed Oct 11, 2017 2:15 pm

Another case of a vexatious litigant. It would not even be begun to be heard in Oz.

Whilst one has a great deal of sympathy for those disabled not being able to enjoy the things others do, they must realise their limits. My learned friend EarlytalkieRob has already suggested that the screenplay might have been available in Braille.
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostFri Oct 13, 2017 2:10 pm

Donald Binks wrote:Another case of a vexatious litigant. It would not even be begun to be heard in Oz.

Whilst one has a great deal of sympathy for those disabled not being able to enjoy the things others do, they must realise their limits. My learned friend EarlytalkieRob has already suggested that the screenplay might have been available in Braille.


Said screenplay might not actually be available in Braille, but producing a transcription should not be physically impossible. I just seems odd to attend a show which one is unable to appreciate.
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostMon Oct 16, 2017 4:25 pm

I was away for a week and came home to find this thread full of ignorance, arrogance, and patronization from people with whom I have enjoyed several years of online camaraderie and mutual earned respect. To call it disheartening is to understate it.

As Mike Gebert pointed out, the case itself was not decided. Only the plaintiff’s right to bring it to court was decided. And it was decided on extremely solid precedents, not to mention the Department of Justice’s forcefully stated and long-standing policies, regulations, and interpretations.

So I am not going to argue the merits of the case. Instead, I am expressing my deep disappointment at the responses posted by people here. People of whom I thought better, and expected better.

Some of you declared the plaintiff, being deaf and blind, couldn’t possibly “appreciate” the film “for physical reasons”. What are your qualifications for making this announcement? Are you deaf and blind yourself? Why not also declare unequivocally that amputees cannot “appreciate” watching Ursain Bolt run the 100 metres “for physical reasons”?

I am deaf and I am having surgery this week to save the vision in one eye. You think I can’t enjoy films “for physical reasons”? Then maybe you have some other explanation for the thousands of videos in my house and the two film books I’ve written? or for my presence on NitrateVille itself?

Several of you appear to think it is “good enough” to give the plaintiff a Braille version of the screenplay, assuming such exists. Who are you to make that decision? How about I sit you down and give you an ASL rendition of the movie, without the benefit of either video or audio to assist you – will you consider that “good enough” for yourself? Will you be pleased that I had the arrogance to decide it was “good enough” for you, without bothering to consult you first?

Will you also have the balls to stand up and declare flatly that women should be satisfied to get paid 87 cents for every dollar men get paid? It’s “good enough” for them, isn’t it, since they have “physical reasons” that prevent them from appreciating a full dollar’s payment.

Your postings are appallingly characteristic of the presumption that able-bodied people “know what is best” for people with disabilities. Newsflash: You don’t.

Look at the paragraph at the top of page 5 of the decision:

McGann has experienced movies in theaters for many years. He enjoys attending movies in person for a number of reasons; among others, it affords him the opportunity to participate in discussions about the movies with his friends and family. Before his wife passed away in 2001, she would provide him with tactile interpretation during movies in the theater. Since then, McGann has attended movies at a local Carmike Cinema.


Does that sound like someone who is unable to “appreciate” films “for physical reasons”? To the contrary, it establishes that he has been enjoying them for more than 17 years plus however many years he was married before his wife’s death.

A large proportion of the Deaf community has Usher’s syndrome, the same thing the plaintiff has. I’ve worked with countless examples of these folks, including my deaf-blind adoptive grandmother who kept up her enjoyment of watching television AND ASL-SINGING ALONG WITH HYMNS ON TELEVISED RELIGIOUS PROGRAMS until her recent death at age 96. I run an extremely complicated project in reaching out to immigrants and refugees from coast to coast to coast across Canada (we have three coasts, you know) and I am about to hire as director of this project a young woman who is deaf and blind. She is fluent in multiple languages, has a master’s degree, has worked extensively in Chile, Nepal, Nigeria, USA and Canada, was named the Rotary Club’s Woman of the Year, and she isn’t even 35 years old yet. But you’re going to assume she can’t really have “appreciated” those experiences “for physical reasons”.

Enough with the ugly assumptions about people with disabilities.

Jim
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostMon Oct 16, 2017 4:38 pm

Point taken Jim and I for one apologise if what I said has given offence. I think the main gist of my feelings were that it would seem to be a heavy financial burden on exhibitors to have to supply a suitable translator to do the translations - which I think was behind the case being brought.
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostTue Oct 17, 2017 6:40 am

Donald Binks wrote:Point taken Jim and I for one apologise if what I said has given offence. I think the main gist of my feelings were that it would seem to be a heavy financial burden on exhibitors to have to supply a suitable translator to do the translations - which I think was behind the case being brought.


The maximum cost of an interpreter, as indicated in the court decision, is $75/hour with a 2-hour minimum. For 2 interpreters and a 2-hour film, that means a MAXIMUM of $300 per outing.

We know the plaintiff is not Bob Lipton or yourself, Donald, i.e. people whose postings here create the impression they watch 3-4 films every day. The plaintiff probably doesn't go to the movies more than once a week. That totals about $21,000 per year. No movie theatre can argue successfully that this imposes a financial burden upon them.

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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostTue Oct 17, 2017 6:42 am

Donald Binks wrote:Point taken Jim and I for one apologise if what I said has given offence. I think the main gist of my feelings were that it would seem to be a heavy financial burden on exhibitors to have to supply a suitable translator to do the translations - which I think was behind the case being brought.

Donald's point here was mine exactly. I sincerely apologize for my rash statement, and I wish I hadn't made it. My father was a double amputee and he was a John Wayne to me growing up and got along just fine on two wooden legs. Seems I've forgotten my own lessons. Again, I apologize, Jim.
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostTue Oct 17, 2017 7:13 am

Jim Roots wrote:
Donald Binks wrote:Point taken Jim and I for one apologise if what I said has given offence. I think the main gist of my feelings were that it would seem to be a heavy financial burden on exhibitors to have to supply a suitable translator to do the translations - which I think was behind the case being brought.


The maximum cost of an interpreter, as indicated in the court decision, is $75/hour with a 2-hour minimum. For 2 interpreters and a 2-hour film, that means a MAXIMUM of $300 per outing.

We know the plaintiff is not Bob Lipton or yourself, Donald, i.e. people whose postings here create the impression they watch 3-4 films every day. The plaintiff probably doesn't go to the movies more than once a week. That totals about $21,000 per year. No movie theatre can argue successfully that this imposes a financial burden upon them.

Jim


Jim, may I disagree with you conclusion of what is reasonable without inciting your understandable wrath? My question is this: is it reasonable for society to impose a particular legal duty on someone that he does not morally feel? Obviously yes, within reasonable limits; quite obviously, ideas of what is reasonable may vary, and I did take the time to read the court papers that were linked through before posting through here.

Although Mike makes light of the impact of court action, it is quite considerable, and can lead people to conclusions that would not otherwise be reasonable. Nor do I consider the fact that the Department of Justice has submitted a brief in support to be morally binding.

Quite obviously, your standards of what is reasonable are informed by your deafness. I sorrow for your inability to enjoy those things which I enjoy hearing and I rejoice on your behalf that theaters make available techniques for your to enjoy movies, just as I appreciate that when I took my family to see A Man With Two Governors a few years back, there were facilities for dealing with my cousin’s wheelchair-bound son. However, there are limits to everything, and I have at least occasional issues with people saying to me “I need this, and so you should pay for it.”

Bob
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostTue Oct 17, 2017 8:13 am

The Americans With Disabilities Act probably goes into detail about what is allowed, because it is about accomodation, not just access.
https://www.ada.gov
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostTue Oct 17, 2017 12:09 pm

By the way, Jim, thank you for calling to task some Nitratevillains whose skepticism led them into gross language. It should be borne in in mind that we owe courtesy not only to those who are here to take us to task when we fail in it. It is the mark of gentility, I was taught, to offer courtesy to those who cannot demand it.

It is possible to express skepticism without insult. I don't believe I have transgressed those boundaries, but if you disagree, please indicate where, and I will try to make amends.

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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostTue Oct 17, 2017 12:20 pm



As I had never heard of "tactile interpreting" either, here is a video showing how it works...
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostTue Oct 17, 2017 2:52 pm

Bob, you did not post anything offensive. Donald and Michael, your apologies are accepted. Miss Dupont, thank you for your postings too.

Again, I will not argue the merits of the actual case itself, because for one thing we don't have transcripts of all the documents filed in evidence, and for another thing, the decision was not about whether the complaint was justified or not but rather it was about whether it should be heard in court.

My only issue was with the assumptions and attitudes that were evident in several of the reactive postings here.

I can well understand the exasperation with seemingly frivolous complaints under the ADA. Believe me, I'm kept abreast of them in my role as an advisor in the development of the forthcoming Canadian federal accessibility legislation (presently expected to be introduced next June) and in my role as a member of one of the implementation and standards committees for the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (for the province of Ontario). And I have my own personal queasiness about the stretching of the definition of "disability" to encompass things like addictions, obesity, and even transgendering.

But there can be no doubt someone who is blind and deaf must deal with genuine disabilities, and society should be working to ensure their inclusion in all aspects of daily life.

I'm heartened that (at least in Canada) most businesses subjected to accessibility legislation are looking for ways to accommodate all disabilities in good faith. There are few that fight against it. I think they have learned from experience -- for example, that ramps in place of stairs in a mall will benefit not just people using wheelchairs (not "bound" by them, Bob, but rather liberated by them) but also parents pushing baby carriages, older people, temporarily hobbled people (broken leg, sprained ankle, knee surgery), even robust people who happen to be burdened with enormous quantities of purchases (like a 50-inch TV).

But there are still occasions when attitudes, not environments, rear up some ugly heads. A good hefty swat upside those heads can serve as useful reminders.

Jim
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostTue Oct 17, 2017 4:05 pm

Ignorance is not always bliss, so we who do not know about those things that affect other people adversely in our society should always have an ear open to their needs. A well presented argument often works wonders. My awareness I admit is in the formulative stages, but I am progressing and Jim's comments are taking me further in my journey. When one considers though what the world was like when I was growing up in its understanding of people with needs, compared to how it is now; I think we have seen a hell of a lot of changes.
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostTue Oct 17, 2017 10:49 pm

The Pasadena NPR station KPCC had an interview this afternoon on their entertainment show "The Frame" with actor RussellHarvard of the Deaf West Theatre Company, who is performing in a production of "Our town." He mentions what it's like working as a deaf actor onstage and on film and what it means to be able to have regular plays and movies accessible to him as well.
https://www.scpr.org/programs/the-frame ... lay-can-b/
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostWed Oct 18, 2017 7:59 am

By the way, Donald, this kind of case would indeed make it to court in Australia!

You may not be aware that there is a Disability Discrimination Act 1992 that governs accessibility in Australia. Section 23 deals with access to "premises used by the public" which would include movie theatres; and Section 24, "provision of goods, services, and facilities", includes pubs, places of entertainment, video shops, etc.

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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostWed Oct 18, 2017 8:24 am

Does access to premises include the ability to use the services included therein? Those seem two separate things to me in my non-lawyer's mind.

Bob
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostWed Oct 18, 2017 8:45 am

Jim Roots wrote:The maximum cost of an interpreter, as indicated in the court decision, is $75/hour with a 2-hour minimum. For 2 interpreters and a 2-hour film, that means a MAXIMUM of $300 per outing.

We know the plaintiff is not Bob Lipton or yourself, Donald, i.e. people whose postings here create the impression they watch 3-4 films every day. The plaintiff probably doesn't go to the movies more than once a week. That totals about $21,000 per year. No movie theatre can argue successfully that this imposes a financial burden upon them.

Jim


And that's for each individual. So if ten different individuals wanting such service attend per week, the theater incurs a quite reasonable $210,000 per year? Can you share any data on chains vs. independents and respective profit margins? While I feel every effort should be made to accommodate individuals with disabilities and ensure that they're not marginalized, it's a societal issue and I question whether it's fair to put this solely upon exhibitors. Shouldn't the film companies step up? And wouldn't it be reasonable to share the added expense among all moviegoers?
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostWed Oct 18, 2017 9:09 am

Mike Gebert wrote:Well, yes, Bob, I understand that it's also "you have the right to keep trying to get a large cash settlement from the defendant for a little while longer."
Apparently even that is often misrepresented. The woman who was always quoted as the summit of lawsuit madness was the one who sued the golden arches because her coffee was too hot, right? It was a well known story.


But I learned recently that she wasn't a "gold digger" at all. Her coffee really was far above the normal temperature - I don't do imperial measurements but it had been heated to an abnormal degree for coffee - and she suffered from serious burns, and only went to court because the company refused any compensation or settlement. Fake news before it was cool (certainly her drink wasn't).


Every case is different of course, but it just shows how POV these things can be and don't always fit the mold.
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostWed Oct 18, 2017 11:17 am

Spiny Norman wrote:
Mike Gebert wrote:Well, yes, Bob, I understand that it's also "you have the right to keep trying to get a large cash settlement from the defendant for a little while longer."
Apparently even that is often misrepresented. The woman who was always quoted as the summit of lawsuit madness was the one who sued the golden arches because her coffee was too hot, right? It was a well known story.


But I learned recently that she wasn't a "gold digger" at all. Her coffee really was far above the normal temperature - I don't do imperial measurements but it had been heated to an abnormal degree for coffee - and she suffered from serious burns, and only went to court because the company refused any compensation or settlement. Fake news before it was cool (certainly her drink wasn't).


Every case is different of course, but it just shows how POV these things can be and don't always fit the mold.


Good point.

Jim
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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostWed Oct 18, 2017 11:24 am

boblipton wrote:Does access to premises include the ability to use the services included therein? Those seem two separate things to me in my non-lawyer's mind.

Bob


That's why they're in separate sections, 23 and 24 respectively. As part of the research for Canada's forthcoming legislation, we checked the ADA-style legislation in a number of other countries and found nearly all of them do distinguish between accessing premises and accessing the content therein.

For those who are interested in this sort of thing, it is noteworthy that in the case of the province of Ontario's AODA, the regulations governing physical access to built environments (e.g., libraries) were developed and implemented quite quickly with a minimum of blowback from businesses subject to it; the regulations governing access to content (e.g., library holdings and archives), in contrast, have been dragged out for several years. It took five years to come up with the first round of regulations, and the committee I'm involved with has taken a year to review feedback on those regulations and it just filed a request for a six-month extension.

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Re: What Does "Reasonal Accomodation" Mean?

PostWed Oct 18, 2017 11:41 am

ClayKing wrote:
Jim Roots wrote:The maximum cost of an interpreter, as indicated in the court decision, is $75/hour with a 2-hour minimum. For 2 interpreters and a 2-hour film, that means a MAXIMUM of $300 per outing.

We know the plaintiff is not Bob Lipton or yourself, Donald, i.e. people whose postings here create the impression they watch 3-4 films every day. The plaintiff probably doesn't go to the movies more than once a week. That totals about $21,000 per year. No movie theatre can argue successfully that this imposes a financial burden upon them.

Jim


And that's for each individual. So if ten different individuals wanting such service attend per week, the theater incurs a quite reasonable $210,000 per year? Can you share any data on chains vs. independents and respective profit margins? While I feel every effort should be made to accommodate individuals with disabilities and ensure that they're not marginalized, it's a societal issue and I question whether it's fair to put this solely upon exhibitors. Shouldn't the film companies step up? And wouldn't it be reasonable to share the added expense among all moviegoers?


I rather doubt ten different deaf-blind individuals will all converge on the same theatre for the same showing of a film, but it may happen some day -- e.g., at a specially-arranged showing as part of a national convention of deaf-blind people.

Each individual has different degrees of sensory losses -- some can see adequately (tunnel vision) and might prefer captioning to interpreting in that case, others may be clinically hard of hearing rather than deaf and would ask for a listening system (FM system, loop system, infra-red system, etc.) Those with enough vision to see an interpreter sitting directly in front (very close) could share the interpreter rather than each using an intervenor (tactile interpreter). So it's not quite as simple as multiplying by ten, but I'm not denying your point.

I don't have the financial stats on movie theatre chains handy; no doubt someone here can dig them up. But as the judge in the case observed, it is extremely difficult for a large corporation such as AMC theatres to claim "excessive burden". I was involved in a human rights tribunal case against the CBC-TV network in which that broadcaster claimed it would cost them $450,000/year to caption all of their programming. The judge observed that the financial statements filed by the CBC indicated $450,000 was approximately 2 percent of its overall budget. Complaint upheld ... and the CBC became the first broadcaster in the world to caption all of its programming. (So of course it now proudly proclaims it is a world leader in television captioning!)

I certainly have no problem with the film studios or producers stepping up to share the costs of accessibility. I believe that already happened in the past when the film studios and/or distributors took it upon themselves to provide in-theatre captioning. If I understand correctly, the theatres buy or lease the devices which the customer screws into the cupholder on his seat in order to access the captions, but that's the extent of the financial burden placed on the theatres. The costs of providing the captioning rests with the content providers (studios, etc.)

Jim

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