That All May Read

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digital players

(The following is a guest post by Karen Keninger, director of the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped.) - There are times when a “best-kept secret” is exactly what you want. But not when it comes to one of the most highly valued services provided through the Library of Congress – namely the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (NLS).

This free public library service provides books and magazines in braille and talking-book formats to half a million residents of the United States and U.S. citizens living abroad who can’t read standard print because of visual or physical disabilities. However, statistics indicate that even more Americans could benefit from the service if they only knew about it.

That’s why NLS has launched a public education campaign to spread the word about NLS and its network of more than 100 cooperating libraries throughout the U.S. and its territories. We particularly want to inform people who are students, veterans or seniors who either cannot see well enough to read print or who have physical disabilities that make it difficult for them to handle a book or access print in other ways. Our goal is to make sure that all may read, regardless of disability.

The first completed portion of the campaign is a new set of web pages presenting information about NLS and a video featuring NLS patrons describing their experiences with the Library of Congress braille and talking-book program. The video is accessed through the Library’s new, accessible video player and is narrated by Kate Kiley, a veteran NLS narrator.

The new pages form the hub of a digital marketing campaign that will include digital media such as banner ads and text ads and search engine optimization. We also plan to use Facebook and YouTube, with video accompanied by audio description and text files.

See full blog posting at the Library of Congress blog.