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People’s Daily Online: Mr. Gao Songtao: “Barrier-free Information Communication”: Provide Convenience for Special Populations

People’s Daily Online, Beijing, Aug. 1 (Li Nannan) Mr. Gao Songtao, Deputy Director of CSIP, accepted interview from People’s Daily Online, and talked about “barrier-free information communication by all-level governments to promote e-government service level of China”.

By Aug. 1, Regulations on Barrier-free Environment Construction issued by the State Council (No. 622) has been implemented for one year. In this year, all –level governments have strictly followed the Regulations and obtained good social effect. As for how the Regulations promote barrier-free information communication development in China, Gao represents that, barrier-free information communication is highlighted in the Regulations and makes a breakthrough, where the requirements are specified in Clause 18 and 19.

He points out that, “At present, China has entered information society, where no work can be completed without computer and network. And, we download movies and music with WiFi. We take out our phones to connect with the Internet at any time and any place possible. It seems that we cannot survive without Internet. However, not all populations have enjoyed convenience of information society.”

In China, there are 85.02 million population disabled, among whom the blind occupy over 13 million. They may have difficulty in operating the computer to share the information. The seniors also face the problem. And, some young who migrate to work in cities from back countries are also confronted with barriers in online operation for lack of education.

Gao says that, barrier exists both in computer operation skills as well as in cognition. Pre-school children are another group in urgent demand of joy and convenience of information society. For this purpose, the computer and network shall be designed for easy access of all groups of populations.

As Gao holds, breakthrough has been made in the Regulations, where barrier-free infrastructure is no longer limited to buildings and roads but extends to information communication. Specified requirements are presented. In Clause 18, it is required that “People’s Government of county level or above shall include barrier-free information communication in informationization construction plan and take efficient measures to promote barrier-free information communication”. In Clause 19, it is required that “People’s Government of county level or above, as well as relevant departments, shall create conditions such as voice and text for convenience of the disabled when publishing important information and disabled-relevant information.”

With the guidance on barrier-free information communication in the Regulations, some technological means shall be taken out. It is explicitly specified in the Regulations that, MMIT and relevant departments of the State Council shall take the responsibility to create barrier-free information environment. MIIT, as the competent authority of information industry, is the organizer of “China Barrier-Free Information Forum” and the supervisor of Internet. It has been focused on promoting technology, enterprise, and products relevant to barrier-free information, and devoted itself to intelligent and human-machine interaction techniques for years.

Gao says, “After issuance of Regulations on Barrier-free Environment Construction by the State Council (No. 622), the third chapter greatly facilitates development of barrier-free information technology. MIIT is highlighted for its responsibility and administration of the industry.”