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Blind and visually impaired people will benefit significantly from the new EU rules on copyright – Hayes

Blind and visually impaired people will benefit significantly from the new EU rules on copyright – Hayes

Dublin MEP, Brian Hayes has welcomed new EU legislation that will give greater access to books for blind and visually impaired people. The European Parliament has successfully passed the new regulation which will increase the number of books and other copyright materials available in accessible formats such as braille, audio books and large print.

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“The decision taken by the European Parliament means that books and other materials that are protected by copyright law can now be easily reproduced in an accessible format for blind and visually impaired people. Up until now, visually impaired people only had access to less than 5% of published works in the EU.

“Everyone has a right to education, information and social participation. The rules up until now have been very unfair. Blind and visually impaired people have been excluded from reading books as they were not published in accessible formats due to copyright rules. The new rules changes that. Individuals and organisations can now make copies of works in accessible formats and distribute them across the EU without fear of breaking the law.”

“There are approximately 30 million visually impaired people in the EU who will benefit significantly from this regulation change.” concluded MEP Hayes.

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