George Kerscher Opens DPUB Summit 2024

George Kerscher delivering his keynote infront of a DPUB slide to open the event

This year’s Digital Publishing Summit, hosted by EDRLab, had a strong accessibility focus and this was particularly the case for the opening keynote, given by DAISY’s George Kerscher.

Cela’s Miia Kirsii posted:

One of my favourite events is here! The real OG of accessible digital books, George Kerscher from the DAISY Consortium gave a truly moving inauguration speech at Digital Publishing Summit here in Philanthro-Lab in Paris. It’s not only tech and specs, it’s also food for soul.

George treated DPUB delegates to an overview of his extensive career and experience thereby giving us a resume of the history of digital publishing in which he has played an integral part. Suffice to say, it all started with George! His dedication and enthusiasm was the driving force behind many of the early accessible publishing wins from coining the term “print disabled” to convening and collaborating with global bodies to form The DAISY Consortium. This was a fascinating snapshot of how far our community has come and how George’s dreams for accessible publishing are indeed coming true.

And so, I borrowed from Dr Martin Luther King’s civil rights speech “I have a dream”. And I said to the people I have a dream that someday people who are blind and print disabled will be able to have access to all the published information in the world. I have a dream that people with low vision will be able to enlarge the characters on the screen and have their computer read to them. I have a dream that people who are dyslexic will be able to change the font and spacing and colors, and have their computer read to them while the information is being highlighted.

It hasn’t been easy and George was keen to highlight the various challenges that have been faced along the way but with the advent of the EAA next year, there are exciting times ahead and much to look forward to:

Am I dreaming? Am I hallucinating? I don’t think so! This is real and my dreams are coming true. We’re counting down to the EAA.

This powerful keynote kick-started a conference that had accessibility at its heart and we have listed a number of links below to provide access to reviews, transcripts and reports of these important sessions. DAISY has announced a series of webinars that begin in June to countdown to the EAA and this keynote started that countdown.

Other Accessibility Sessions

Accessibility was a theme mentioned in most of the other sessions delivered throughout the day, however the following presentations made accessibility the focus of their presentation:

Summit Resources

Transcript of George Kerscher’s Keynote

Video recordings of all the DPUB presentations, including George Kerscher’s Keynote

DPUB 2024 Agenda

Publisher’s Ownership of Accessibility: Transcript of presentation given by Ana Maria Bermudez

Accessibility in Action-EDRLab’s Digital Summit: Laura Brady for International Publishers Association

EAA DAISY Webinar Series