Disabled people
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Be My Eyes app. See current Waitrose newsletter

newbornnewborn Member Posts: 713 Pioneering
People with poor sight can open a link to a  volunteer army who will get a phone alert.  Someone will pick up, and using the link, will read the sell by date, or inform the questioner if the washing machine is on the right setting, and so on.

They have not realised, but I guess the link could give a chance for disabled people trapped at home to be the techno equivalent of a lifeboat crew, rushing to assist others.

Replies

  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 6,627 Disability Gamechanger
    It’s received much praise but having tried it I found it left me feeling very uncomfortable in as much 

    a) you’re compromising your independence.
    b) the solution to barriers imposed by inaccessibility should not be “dear able bodied person please help”.
    c) there are security issues.
  • newbornnewborn Member Posts: 713 Pioneering
    How interesting you already tried.   I guess it's horses for courses.   At least, it's there as an option in an emergency.

    Wheelchair users with sight can judge which fellow customer to ask, to reach a shelf, or can see which distant aisle has an assistant.   Blind people must have choice of memorising the stock layout or asking whatever person they sense is nearby.   Neither option is ideal.   There is in theory a system of asking staff to go round as personal shoppers, for all types of disability,  but that too is not ideal,or even logistically feasible at peak times.

    Is it for some, sometimes,  the 'least worse' to have willing volunteers, probably far away, but capable of reading the labels shown to them on a phone?

    Your security point is interesting.  I couldn't  understand why the organisers assume it best to invariably send texts to a locality.     For some instances, of course it would be an advantage, or essential.   But, as you imply, vulnerability is not something you wish to advertise locally.   Theres nothing wrong in asking someone who could be on another continent, and still read the list of ingredients! 

    Either the organisers could  tweak the app, or,  could you enter a distant postcode at such times?
  • nkaronnkaron Member Posts: 5 Listener
    @mikehughescq  That's interesting insight! For sure, the solution for ableist infrastructure or systems should not be defaulting to having able bodied strangers assist, but perhaps as @newborn says  the idea is to build a community of willing volunteers, which is less hassle if they offer real-time, one-off help when needed? 

    You recently answered my questionnaire on public transport, I would love to hear any alternatives you have to this type of set-up, if you have the time! 
    We are currently working on an app to be able to bring together a community of regular commuters, but your insight into this might be helpful, especially since you feel uncomfortable asking for assistance through the app-medium. 

    Cheers :) 



  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 6,627 Disability Gamechanger
    newborn said:
    How interesting you already tried.   I guess it's horses for courses.   At least, it's there as an option in an emergency.

    Wheelchair users with sight can judge which fellow customer to ask, to reach a shelf, or can see which distant aisle has an assistant.   Blind people must have choice of memorising the stock layout or asking whatever person they sense is nearby.   Neither option is ideal.   There is in theory a system of asking staff to go round as personal shoppers, for all types of disability,  but that too is not ideal,or even logistically feasible at peak times.

    Is it for some, sometimes,  the 'least worse' to have willing volunteers, probably far away, but capable of reading the labels shown to them on a phone?

    Your security point is interesting.  I couldn't  understand why the organisers assume it best to invariably send texts to a locality.     For some instances, of course it would be an advantage, or essential.   But, as you imply, vulnerability is not something you wish to advertise locally.   Theres nothing wrong in asking someone who could be on another continent, and still read the list of ingredients! 

    Either the organisers could  tweak the app, or,  could you enter a distant postcode at such times?
    I’ve no idea where the idea comes from that the choice is between memory or asking for a visually impaired person. There are loads of aids to independence in that scenario. 
  • mikehughescqmikehughescq Member Posts: 6,627 Disability Gamechanger
    @nkaron I think the problem is that app writers see apps as the solution. They mean their apps. From a users perspective I already use transport apps. The very last thing I want to do is have more than one and switch between them. What I actually want is the specific functionality to be added/integrated to existing apps. 
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