Dr. Irving King Jordan Jr highest paid federal retiree in...
Don's Blog Bloomberg obtained a list of federal retirees along with their annual benefits via a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request. Keep in mind that federal retirees are paid thanks to taxpayers. As per Bloomberg: Irving K. Jordan Jr., former president of Gallaudet University in Washington, led the list at $375,900. Gallaudet gets about $120 million...
Sat, Feb 04 2012
Don's Blog Yesterday, a conversation took place on Twitter between @AliciaLane and @KelbyBrick. The topic was mentorship. The main issue at hand was the shortage of willing deaf leaders to mentor others who were deaf and interested in also becoming leaders in their respective industries. Alicia initially stated that the reason for this was due to leaders...
Thu, Jan 05 2012
Cullen VS Netflix Lawsuit Update
Don's Blog The lawsuit is still ALIVE and kicking. Some of you may have read the post at Deaf Politics ‘Small Victory for Netflix in Cullen v. Netflix’. It’s not even a small victory per se for Netflix—in fact, if anything, it’s a small defeat for Netflix. We amended it to remove the ADA aspect because of...
Sat, Oct 01 2011
Netflix screwing over customers
Don's Blog Netflix doing something wrong to a lot of customers, and you want to sue? Netflix won
Thu, Sep 15 2011
U.S. Bureau of Census Refuses to Recognize American Sign...
Don's Blog I was not able to reach a solution with the Census. They made it clear they do not intend to recognize it on the census, furthermore, they also stated it’d require congressional action requiring data collection about American Sign Language (ASL) usage. The contact however went out of his way to explain why this was...
Sat, Jul 23 2011
Update on the Class Action Lawsuit VS Netflix
Don's Blog Here’s the overdue update on the class action lawsuit you all have been waiting for. It’s been a while since the lawsuit was announced. Specifically, the one I filed against Netflix. As many of you already know, as soon as the lawsuit was filed, all of the people involved went silent. This is typical of...
Sat, Jul 16 2011
The Fight to Get ASL Recognized on US Census
Don's Blog Did you know the only way to identify American Sign Language as your primary language on the census is by marking down ‘other’ and filling in the blank line? I usually fill out the census and mark down English, but ever since Deaf Politics tweeted about a petition circulating on the web demanding that it...
Wed, Jul 06 2011
Management at Purple to Netflix: Acknowledge the Deaf!
Don's Blog First, the disclaimer. Kari’s letter to Netflix is a personal letter from her to Netflix with her own opinion. It doesn’t represent Purple nor their opinions, and is not commissioned by Purple. Kari Aicher, who works for Purple Communications as Customer Care Manager, wrote a passionate letter to the CEO of Netflix arguing that Netflix...
Thu, May 26 2011
4 states closed their school for the deaf, 2 other states...
Don's Blog Two schools are also in danger of closing. Nevada closes their school on April 1 (unless they manage to come up with an additional $50,000); which is only seven days from now. Utah is seriously considering closing down their school due to their budget problems. Wyoming closed their school in 2000. South Dakota closed their...
Wed, Mar 23 2011
Deaf VS Netflix: Lawsuit Now in Progress!
Don's Blog NATIONWIDE CLASS ACTION FILED AGAINST NETFLIX; LAWSUIT ALLEGES POPULAR MOVIE WEBSITE FAILED TO CAPTION STREAMING VIDEO LIBRARY IN VIOLATION OF STATE AND FEDERAL LAW, MISLED DEAF AND HARD OF HEARING CUSTOMERS March 15, 2011: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE The prominent San Diego-based Weston Firm has filed a class action lawsuit in San Jose federal court against...
Wed, Mar 16 2011
LEAKED: Sorenson nTouch PC Software Download
Don's Blog The software isn’t available for download direct from Sorenson. They’ve been doing controlled installs by having trainers go to customer’s residences, and performing the installation themselves. An anonymous source shared the installer with me. Clicking create account only takes me to the ‘sign up’ page, but isn’t an account creation page. I’ll figure it out...
Thu, Mar 10 2011
Powerful poetry about deafness by hearing brother of a deaf...
Don's Blog I cannot think of how to describe this. This is simply intense—the imagery woven by Joshua Bennett, it’s pure art. His poetry is about deafness, and his sister, and his reactions to it. President Obama and his wife, Vice President Biden, and several others were there to witness the entire performance. Joshua even got it...
Mon, Feb 28 2011
Netflix says 30% of titles are subtitled. WRONG!
Don's Blog Neil Hunt, Netflix Chief Product Officer, went on record at Netflix’s blog talking about Netflix’s progress with subtitles. Way overdue. But still appreciated that he even went on record at all. In his blog post, the title says “30% of Netflix Streaming Content Has Subtitles; 80% By End of 2011”. While I’m seriously excited by...
Fri, Feb 25 2011
Sorenson nTouch Leaked!
Don's Blog Been seeing leaks about the Sorenson nTouch product from: [link] It seems Sorenson nTouch is actually a hardware/software combination. The hardware is a OEM re-branded Logitech HD C510 webcam. The re-branded version with the original unbranded below it: And the screenshots of the software: When Sorenson releases the software, it will be downloadable [....
Fri, Jan 07 2011
Online Video Captioning, Extra $$$ for VRS/TRS, and more!
Don's Blog For those who prefer a vlog over a blog, I’ve included a signed version of this blog. They may not be identical, but the concept is same. 21st Century Video Accessibility and Communications Act of 2010 Key Summary: TRS/VRS gets more money. Online captioning for online videos provided by Hulu, Netflix, etc are definitely required....
Tue, Dec 21 2010
Netflix Slammed by Deaf Protests
Don's Blog Chances are, many of you use Netflix. What you may be or may not be aware of: did you know there’s a protest forming against Netflix, and it’s already costing Netflix an amount of money? While the amount is currently low, it’s steadily growing. Netflix initially released streaming to the public in 2008. However, none...
Thu, Nov 25 2010
Open Letter to Hulu
Don's Blog I'm a fan of Hulu. I saw they had an app for the iPhone called Hulu Plus. So I tried it out, and to my dismay, discovered it did not support captioning. So... I wrote an email to Hulu's legal team. To whom it may concern- I'm not quite sure if you're monitor the bills...
Sun, Sep 05 2010
SnapVRS Gone Aggressive Against Sorenson!
Don's Blog Somebody’s frothing at the mouth (hands?)! I recently got an email this morning with an amusing ad from SnapVRS that snipes at Sorenson. This is the first blatant attack on Sorenson I’ve seen in a long while from another VRS competitor. I’ve seen a similar advertisement from Purple, but there was no actual mention of...
Tue, Aug 31 2010
My Experiences: Deaf Youth USA, Visual Revolution...
Don's Blog A word of warning—this is a long article. So for those who’re impatient and just want a quick summary; it was an awesome experience, learned a lot, and definitely will be attending again for the next event. It wasn’t just about learning, it was about empowerment, unification, and bonding. I certainly made a lot of...
Sun, Jul 11 2010
A Deaf View: Alcatraz Cruises, Fun, But Not Deaf-Friendly.
Don's Blog A friend of mine and I both went to visit the Alcatraz island. I had heard much about it, and finally had a chance to visit it. We used Alcatraz Cruises to be able to reach the island. The island was quite interesting, I was surprised to hear Al Capone, AKA “Scarface”, was imprisoned at the...
Wed, May 26 2010
Sorenson Responds to FCC About VRS Rate Cut Proposal
Don's Blog A visitor left a comment to my post regarding the recent FCC VRS rate cut proposal. What surprised me was that the comment was directly from Sorenson. I checked the IP address, geolocated the IP, and am able to verify that the comment was indeed left from the Sorenson Communications Headquarters in Utah. I have not...
Tue, May 11 2010
VRS Rate Cuts NOT the death of VRS
Don's Blog I was going to let this go past without writing a post on this, but I’ve been getting quite a lot of calls on the concern about VRS rate cuts being the end of VRS. So I figured I’d write a post on it. As many of you already know, I am employed by PurpleVRS as...
Sun, May 09 2010
Taking Action Against Nelnet for Refusing VRS Calls
Don's Blog Nelnet emailed me the third party release forms. So I emailed them a response. I will be copying this into a letter, printing it out, then will send it via standard mail so they have a hard copy of it. I have already begun looking for an attorney, if you know of one, the referral would...
Fri, Apr 23 2010
Nelnet Refusing Calls from VRS Customers
Don's Blog I owe money in college student loans to two entities: one is the government, and one is Nelnet. I'm notoriously absent-minded, so it isn't a surprise when I forget my password to a site. Up to date, I've been making my monthly payments via Nelnet's website. Until now, that is. I forgot my password. So...
Wed, Apr 21 2010
NAD Responds to the FCC Declaratory Ruling
Don's Blog Bobbie Beth Scoggins of NAD responded to the FCC Declaratory Ruling via text and a vlog. I thought she shared several good points. It is good to see that the NAD is addressing it. As always, the short version as quoted from the NAD article: The TRS Fund does not pay for VRS calls placed for...
Sat, Mar 13 2010
Purple and FCC Hugs and Makes Up!
Don's Blog See? There’s some home to humanity after all! If Purple and FCC can get along, so can we all! FCC and Purple reached an agreement and made peace. Purple has issued a press release. Purple has survived the previous crisis, and will continue to serve customers! For those of you, who’re like me and have short attention...
Wed, Mar 10 2010
PurpleVRS: Still Alive, and Still Fighting!
Don's Blog PurpleVRS has issued a press release on the current ongoing situation with FCC, which includes how it will affect PurpleVRS. The article can be accessed directly at: [link] The article is quite long, so I’ll summarize it up for those who’re in a hurry, or have short attention spans. Basically, PurpleVRS has formally asked FCC to reconsider [...]
Thu, Mar 04 2010
FCC Vlog on FCC VRS Declaratory Ruling
Don's Blog The FCC has released a vlog on the recent VRS ruling, and I thought I'd share it with you all. In the Matter of Structure and Practices of the Video Relay Service Program. The FCC Reaffirms Rules and Policies of Video Relay Service. CG Docket No. 10-51 News Release: Word |PDF Declaratory Ruling: Word | PDF The above content can be directly [...]
Mon, Mar 01 2010
Vlog by Kelby Brick, Vice President of PurpleVRS on FCC...
Don's Blog Before I go any further, I’d like to reiterate a very important point that I failed to mention in my other two posts, a point that is already clearly positioned to the right of this web page. While I may work for Purple VRS, all of my posts, comments, and so on are of my [...]
Sun, Feb 28 2010
PurpleVRS Responds to FCC Ruling
Don's Blog A message from Kelby Brick (Vice President of Purple Communications, Inc., for Regulatory and Strategic Policy) was recently issued. Keep in mind, the message was compiled in a hurry since he's currently in Washington DC addressing the situation. I apologize if this post was hurried, but I just clocked out, and am in the middle [...]
Sun, Feb 28 2010
FCC to VRS Providers: PAY US BACK!
Don's Blog As many of you already know, I currently work for Purple Communications. We just received notice from Purple that when FCC had made their ruling on Feb 25th on how VRS providers can be reimbursed, they also included a very interesting requirement: VRS providers are to pay FCC back for the amounts billed that had to [...]
Fri, Feb 26 2010
Two from Viable Plead Guilty in VRS Fraud
Don's Blog As shared by Bruce Gross of WRAD: WASHINGTON, Jan. 13 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Anthony Mowl, the former assistant vice president of business development for Viable Communications Inc. (Viable), and Donald Tropp, the former human resources manager for Viable, pleaded guilty today to engaging in a conspiracy to defraud the Federal Communications Commission'...
Thu, Jan 14 2010
Talk on VP while flying thanks to FREE in-flight Wi-Fi!
Don's Blog Ever wish you could talk to people via videophone while on a plane enroute to somewhere? Or go online for free while on the plane? Or wish you could use the Wi-Fi while at the airport for free? Thanks to Google, now you can! Google is paying for free wifi for everyone on the planes, and [...]
Thu, Nov 12 2009
ViableVRS Slammed by Federal Class Action Lawsuits
Don's Blog Just when I thought ViableVRS was seeing the light at the end of the tunnel when they got snapped up (pun intended) by Snap!VRS, Viable gets slammed by a federal class action lawsuit. Ouch. And apparently it’s not the only one, there’s another lawsuit pending that I wasn’t aware of. Interesting. I almost feel [...]
Tue, Sep 08 2009
Hell, it’s about time: ADA Upgrade, Deaf Style! (HR3101)
Don's Blog Just heard that Congress is considering a bill (HR 3101) about internet captioning. Got excited! Did some checking — the few blogs that I found only had vlogs talking about it, or simple blurbs. Very limited information for me to cut my teeth on. So I decided to do research and detailed analysis. Found the actual [...]
Tue, Sep 01 2009
Snap!VRS is buying Viable Communications!
Don's Blog Just found out about this. From the article: Pearl River, N.Y. — Snap!VRS announced today its plans to acquire Viable Communications, Inc. The companies reached agreement on Friday and will immediately begin the difficult work of stabilizing Viable's business operations and restoring the confidence of its significant constituent base. Current Snap!VRS and Viabl...
Wed, Aug 19 2009
Purple P3 Netbook Reduced to $149
Don's Blog Purple Communications just reduced the cost of their netbook from the initial price of $199 to $149. The D-Link wifi router is no longer free, and now costs $20 if you want to also get a wifi router. Keep in mind, this is if you have your discount code. If you do not have one, just [...]
Mon, Aug 17 2009
Are You Neutral?
Don's Blog A bud of mine, Travis Dougherty, posted a video on Facebook. I thought it delivered quite a powerful message. Facebook, of course, wouldn't share the video to the public (being a “closed garden”). But I found a copy of the video on YouTube. It also is subtitled. Just wanted to share it with ya'all, [...]
Tue, Feb 10 2009
My Trip to Fremont
Don's Blog Nathan Kester generously let me crash at his place for the night before the Pleasanton DeafNation Expo 2008 event. He told me Viable was hosting an event at the City Beach recreational facility, and that he was going there to meet up with a few friends of his. I decided I’d go too. As soon [...]
Sun, Oct 26 2008
Video Relay Services VS Text-based Relay Services
Don's Blog A friend of mine while talking to me via IM asked me why I preferred the Video Relay Services over the Text-based Relay Services. She dared to tell me to “elaborate”. She asked for it, so I elaborated. (The friend of mine is Rachel S. in Rochester, NY- greetings goes out to her! Thanks [...]
Sat, Sep 13 2008
MoveOn.org Not Captioning Videos
Don's Blog Noticed that MoveOn.org wasn’t captioning the videos they were sending out in their mass emails. So I sent them an email just a few minutes ago: I'm a blogger at DonCullen.net. I am deaf, am a member of the California Association of the Deaf, National Association of the Deaf, and the World Federation of the Deaf. [...]
Wed, Sep 03 2008
National Forum on Disability Issues
Don's Blog Got a newsletter from the NAD. A part of it said: The National Association of the Deaf (NAD) is pleased to be a Hosting Sponsor of the “National Forum on Disability Issues.” This forum will feature the presumptive Republican candidate Senator John McCain (R-AZ) (by satellite) and Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), representing the presumptive Democratic candidate, [...]
Fri, Jul 25 2008
Don's Blog Two weeks ago, I contacted Comcast asking them to establish service here for cable TV and broadband internet. They informed me that they’d be out to our residence in a few days. True to their word, they showed up the day after I contacted them. After a cursory examination of our house, the technician informed [...]
Sun, Jul 20 2008
Google Now Captioning Videos!
Don's Blog Or at the very least, the political ones! They’ve developed software that transliterates spoken speech into text for videos. The end result is captions on the videos, and also a side benefit is that now spoken words can be used as keywords for searching! Pretty cool! The internet just got a bit more accessible [...]
Tue, Jul 15 2008
Viable VPAD Pictures
Don's Blog Thought you’d like to see the pictures I took of the VPAD while I was in a hotel at Los Angles after I bought it! I bought the Viable VPAD at the Deaf Nation Expo 2008 at Pomona, California. That’s basically right next to (if not part of) Los Angles. They said it was $99, but [...]
Mon, Jul 14 2008
Don's Blog Recall the Viable VPAD I blogged about, where I actually drove all the way down to Los Angles to buy it? Will be reviewing it sometime this week or the next as soon as I have switched over to Comcast. I haven't been able to test it since I bought it (bad high speed [...]
Sun, Jul 13 2008
Congress Trying to Make Internet Accessible to the Deaf
Don's Blog I was reading the news when I saw a mention of Congress in the process of legislation that would substantially enhance accessibility for the deaf and the disabled for the internet. Naturally, this got my attention. Here’s the link if you’d like to read the bill for yourself: [link] For those who’re wondering, the bill has just [...]
Sat, Jun 28 2008
Obama & Captioning for the Deaf Update
Don's Blog As some of you may know, I’ve been in contact with the Obama administration regarding captioning all of their video media on their website. I got a response from them: Dear Friend, Thank you for contacting us about closed captioning of video on our website. We appreciate your message, and work hard to make our website accessible. To [...]
Fri, Jun 27 2008
Obama and Captioning
Don's Blog I noticed that most of the media on Barack Obama's website was not captioned. They did have a webpage that contained links to several captioned videos, but that's it: the rest of the website wasn't captioned with the exception of the disabilities issue page. So... I sent a message to the Obama administration: “There's a problem [...]
Fri, Jun 27 2008
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