This week on Mosen At Large, how blind people are covered by the media, a COVID check-in and more on FlickType

Kia ora Mosen At Largers. Here are just a few of the things we’re talking about this week on the podcast that will be published at 6 AM on Sunday New Zealand time. This one is episode 145.

We have been talking about ableist language for some time on the podcast and discussing the harm it does to our employment prospects and social policy. This week as signalled a few weeks ago on the podcast, I appeared before a Parliamentary Select Committee on why this is one of the reasons why coverage of disability issues and the inclusion of disabled people should be a specific provision in the Charter of our public broadcaster, Radio New Zealand. All being well, I’ll play you my testimony from that Committee as well as another relevant submission.

Ableist language is a significant concern, but it is only one element of disability coverage. How well do you think disability issues in general and blindness issues in particular are covered where you are? Has coverage of disability issues improved over the years, or are there still significant problems?

The pandemic and its ramifications are still very real for many of us. After a lengthy period of normality, New Zealand and Australia have been experiencing lockdowns and rising cases due to the delta variant of COVID-19. As well as the Google and Apple contact tracing API, New Zealand has a check-in system based on QR codes. Many disabled New Zealanders are struggling with the app, whose accessibility has deteriorated in recent weeks and also because the QR codes are not put in a consistent place. They can sometimes be out of reach for wheelchair users. Now, our Government is making record keeping compulsory. Thankfully because of a provision in the Terms of Use of the contact tracing API, they cannot make use of the app compulsory, but I fear that disabled people who use an alternative but equally valid and more accessible form of record keeping may be challenged by unaware businesses. It would be great to get an update from you about how the pandemic continues to affect you, or alternatively, whether things have returned to normal for you. If you are using a contact tracing app, is it mandatory, is it accessible, and how easy do you find it to use?

On a related note, Canada has introduced a new process that it is compulsory for all visitors and returnees to the country to complete. Bob Fenton talks with me about this process, which he says has accessibility challenges. We talk about why this has happened in a country that has accessibility legislation.

I also have more on Apple’s killing of the FlickType app, including listener reaction and letters they have sent to Phil Schiller. If you have sent something, feel free to share both the letter and your thoughts.

As usual, there’s a wide array of blindness and technology topics from listeners on which you may like to comment once you hear them.


If you want to raise something new, you’re very welcome. Please don’t be shy, I’d love to hear from you. What makes Mosen At Large special is the global community we’ve built and all the perspectives we share with each other.


To contribute, send an email with an audio attachment or just written down to Jonathan at, or call the listener line, +18646066736, that’s 1-864-60Mosen.


Catch Mosen At Large anywhere you get podcasts. Expect the next episode to drop on Sunday morning New Zealand time.


Thank you so much for listening and contributing to the show and see you soon for Mosen At Large.

1 Comment on “This week on Mosen At Large, how blind people are covered by the media, a COVID check-in and more on FlickType

  1. Very curious to hear of the accessibility challenges with this new Canadian requirement, as I recently returned here myself and the only challenges I faced were the fault of the US (namely terrible covid testing sites and more than one location who flatly refused to take appointments by phone.) The website for submitting travel information to Canada was very accessible, and the only sighted assistance I needed was to take a picture of my vaccine card, which would have been doable using a scanner or just some decent camera skills. I’m not aware of the accessibility of the iOS or Android app, as I found it easier to do from the computer, what with having my card photo there and being able to snappily get around the site using NVDA. Either way, this should be enlightening, and I always want to know when there is an aspect of a product or service that I haven’t considered.