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Twitter Leads to IDPP Director’s Accessibility Chair Appointment

Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) logoDr. Derrick L. Cogburn, IDPP/COTELCO executive director and associate professor at American University and Syracuse University, was appointed the accessibility chair of the 2013 ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW) on 14 February 2012.

The appointment came on the heels of a Twitter discussion (#CSCW2012) about a lack of closed captioning and American Sign Language interpreting at the 2012 conference held 11-15 February in Seattle, Washington.

Dr. Cogburn and Dr. Amy Bruckman, the 2013 CSCW conference chair, discussed how a failure to provide accessible accommodations leads to a lack of participation from persons with disabilities. The Twitter conversation successfully highlighted the need to make next year’s conference more accessible. As a result, Dr. Bruckman appointed Dr. Cogburn to the position, to help identify strategies for making the 2013 CSCW conference more accessible.

“The first step in changing the way society views the importance of accessibility inclusion is to raise awareness. I am pleased that CSCW recognizes this, and I look forward to enhancing the accessibility of the 2013 conference,”said Dr. Cogburn regarding his accessibility chair appointment.

Dr. Cogburn also states that he plans to identify a set of best practices for conference accessibility, and then report on his progress in achieving those goals. The IDPP will play an integral role in helping to make the 2013 conference accessible.

CSCW is the premier conference on social and collaborative computing. Next year's conference will be held in San Antonio, Texas from 23-27 February 2013.