For over seventeen years, Teletec has brought the cutting edge in text communication technologies to people with hearing loss in the UK. Over the past six years, Teletec has introduced exciting new captioning technologies that have the power to revolutionize the way deaf and hard of hearing people communicate over the telephone and communication support for 0ne-to-one, group meetings, seminars and lectures.
These technologies offer the promise of far more functional equivalent access to the telephone, the lecture theatre, GPs, and all of the communications that are so important in today’s world.
However, with the advent of the Internet, SMS, e-mail, and wireless text devices of every sort, the traditional text-telephone is no longer the primary means of communication for the deaf community. The main financial support for Teletec has always been the sale of text phones and, unfortunately, the sales of text phones have declined precipitously over recent years.
Without the support of the text phone sales and due to the lack of universally available funding mechanisms for captioning services, maintaining the Teletec office is no longer fiscally possible.
It is with great regret that I announce that the captioning services including Instant/Personal Captioning service, Captel, and Web-Captel service are no longer available as of the close of business November 30, 2007.
We are earnestly and vigorously pursuing alternatives but there will have to be a break until we can find another captioning services provider.
Without a universal funding method for these kinds of services, small companies will continue to have overwhelming economic challenges in attempting to offer them.
Ours is not the first nor the only alternative relay service company to have to shut its doors this year. Already three other (BDA, CSD, and RNID) small organisations started to offer alternative relay services as Video Relay Service for sign language users in the UK and have had to close due to the lack of a reliable central funding mechanism.
With regards to a 24 hour 365 day a year CapTel Relay Service at no extra cost to the user other than the cost of a standard telephone call, if services like Captel, WebCaptel and IC/PC are to survive and be available long term, they need the help of everyone who is impacted by their loss.
There are advocates who are already engaged in working with OFCOM and other official government channels including the European Commission to try and get a universal fund established to support alternative relay services like Captel and WebCaptel.
To ensure that these services will always be available, please contact Damian Barry, CEO, Hearing Concern firstname.lastname@example.org , and give him your support.
He and Hearing Concern need your help to make certain that this kind of service shut down never happens again and that these useful, more functionally equivalent alternative relay services are available to all who need and depend upon them.
| Got to top |
This blog is about living with a hearing loss in London (UK), bringing up various issues surrounding hearing loss.
Hi, my name is Smudge, I’m a Hearing Dog living in London, England. I’m a cocker poo (cocker spaniel and poodle cross), a breed that’s great for people with allergies. Enjoy the read.
Meet the web mistress find out why we've been online over 10 years, fighting the myth that anyone under 65 with a hearing loss must have been beamed down from another planet!