Alejandro Moledo, European Disability Forum New Technologies and Innovation officer, will be ARSAD 2017 keynote speaker.
Alejandro Moledo coordinates EDF advocacy work on policies concerning e-accessibility for Information and Communication Technologies (ICT), research and innovation, and EDF involvement in standardization activities. Bachelor's degree with honours in Journalism from University of Valencia (Spain, 2005-2010), Mr. Moledo also holds a Master's degree in political and corporate communication from University of Navarra and George Washington University (Spain and US, 2011-2012). During his bachelor’s studies he worked as communication officer for a political group within the parliament of the Valencia Region (2009 and 2010). After working as a journalist in digital media and an internship in a Communication agency in Andorra, he started working at Political Intelligence (Madrid) in 2012, a European public affairs company before joining the European Disability Forum in 2013. Mr Moledo is member of the Spanish Blind Organisation (ONCE), for which he worked as a journalist and regional representative of young visually impaired people inside the organisation (2008-2011).
Keynote presentation: "Users's perspective on a converged media environment"
The European Union is finally acting on accessibility. After years of advocacy work by persons with disabilities, the EU has finally taken some crucial steps to live up to the obligations enshrined in the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UN CRPD), ratified by the EU in 2011 and 27 of its Member States.
On December 2015, the Commission presented a proposal for a Directive on accessibility requirements for mainstream products and services, the so called “European Accessibility Act”. This Directive covers a set of products and services –with a strong ICT component–, including Audiovisual Media Services and related consumer equipment. Soon after, another proposal for a Directive on the accessibility of websites and mobile apps of public sector bodies was adopted, but with the exemption of public broadcasters. And last but not least, the Commission also presented in 2016 a revision of the Audiovisual Media Services Directive, currently under discussion.
Bearing in mind this political environment, organisations of persons with disabilities speak out loud and clear: the whole chain of value should be accessible, from the process of setting up the product to the enhanced use of the new functionalities of the converged audiovisual environment: on-demand video services, video-sharing platforms, multi-content, multi-screen, menu navigation, advanced personalisation, as well as quality access services, which have proven useful for everyone.
In particular audio description, which is not limited to the media environment, also benefits from these technological developments: automatic audio description and synchronised second-device solutions are clear examples. However, where is the end-user? What is the reality for everyday people? How can we match technology breakthroughs with the policy discussions? What are the keys to ensure an end-to-end accessibility on media in line with the UN CRPD? The EU is moving, but everything is at stake.