Bookshare's Library Surpasses 20,000 Titles
Project Is Largest Provider of Digital Books to the Visually Impaired, Learning Disabled
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Palo Alto, CA, January 11, 2005 – Bookshare® announced today that its online collection of accessible digital books has now exceeded 20,000 titles. With its collection growing by over 100 new books per week, Bookshare remains the world's largest provider of accessible digital books to individuals with visual impairments and learning disabilities. Through Bookshare, individuals with print disabilities have access to an extraordinarily diverse array of reading materials: from current bestsellers and literary classics to "how-to" books and textbooks. These books are provided to members as electronic text and can be read with the adaptive technology of the reader’s choice, including text-to-speech software which read the book aloud and refreshable Braille devices that display the book line by line as tactile Braille.
"Twenty thousand books is an extremely exciting milestone for us," stated Janice Carter, Director of Literacy Programs. "Our goal from the start has been to create an experience for our members that rivals a non-disabled person's typical trip to the local bookstore or library. Every book that we add to Bookshare is an important achievement in pursuit of that goal."
Benetech's® CEO, Jim Fruchterman, was pleased to announce that Janice Carter has joined the team as the Director of Literacy Programs, with responsibility for the Bookshare project. Fruchterman stated that "Carter has the vision, experience, and can-do attitude necessary to accomplish Benetech's goals in global literacy."
Carter brings nearly 20 years of entrepreneurial leadership and corporate executive management to Benetech. She previously served as Senior Vice President, Partner Development with ManyOne Networks, where she was instrumental in bringing together leading NGOs and nonprofit organizations to develop the Environmental Information Coalition. Prior to that, she was Senior Director of Business Development at Hyperion Solutions, a leading enterprise software company, held senior management positions at several Internet startups and Silicon Valley's leading software association, SDForum.org, and had a great deal of experience in content production and distribution as SVP Sales for Hasbro's broadcast group. Janice holds a BS in Information Systems Management from the University of San Francisco.
Bookshare offers a collection of over 20,000 accessible digital books to members who have visual impairments or learning disabilities. The books are protected by a comprehensive digital rights management plan, which features extensive controls, including file encryption, watermarks, fingerprinting and a security watch program. Bookshare builds on 15 years of work in the adaptive technology field, originally under the Arkenstone name.
Bookshare is a project of Benetech, an innovative Silicon Valley nonprofit that develops technology projects to address pressing social issues in areas such as disability, human rights, literacy, education and the digital divide. Many technologies have compelling social applications that are not developed because such efforts do not meet investors' financial expectations. Benetech specifically pursues endeavors with a strong social, rather than financial, rate of return on investment, bringing commercial technology and private sector management techniques to bear in creating innovative solutions to difficult social challenges.
# # #
- Back to Top –