Here we go again. First the Kindle promised compatibility with speech output, then the Authors Guild objected. Looks like we might be heading into a similar fray with the iPad, which will have VoiceOver, Apple’s proprietary blindness-friendly screen reader, built in. Will it make a difference that VoiceOver, unlike Kindle’s speech technology, works with all apps instead of just e-books? Stay tuned.
ETA: Things are looking up. The Authors Guild has just joined a coalition to “ensure that when the marketplace offers alternative formats to print books, such as audio and electronic books, print-disabled consumers can access the contents of these alternative formats to the same extent as all other consumers.”