Accessibility for All

Ten percent of the world, more than a billion people, experience disabilities that impact their ability to read. For the blind, ebooks are a lifeline, yet less than one in ten exists in accessible formats. Many are calling this a “book famine.”

Working with Benetech, operator of the world’s largest digital library for people with disabilities that impact reading, the Internet Archive will bring millions of free digital books to billions of people.

We’re partnering with organizations worldwide to provide one-click authorization for their members with certified print disabilities on, allowing them to download millions of books in formats compatible with adaptive devices. Open Libraries will expand ebooks for people with disabilities by 10x and share these books across dozens of nations through global copyright agreements.*

The Internet Archive’s proposal to digitize four million books would constitute the greatest single increase in accessible materials for the blind since the passage of the Pratt-Smoot Act, which created what is now the NLS, in 1931. It would benefit millions of blind people, both in the United States and around the world.
Mark A. Riccobono, President, National Federation of the Blind
  • 285M People Visually Impaired
  • 1 in 10 Books Accessible
  • 31 Nations Ratified *Marrakesh Treaty

Edith Howard

Low Vision Reader

Edith is a vibrant 92-year-old, who loves play bingo, visit with friends, and more than anything else, to read. Edith still lives on her own with her cat, Rudy, named after the great lover, Rudolph Valentino. Almost completely deaf and very low vision, Edith needs to use adaptive devices to read the novels she loves.

Raphael Gonzalez

High school student

Raphael Gonzalez is a water polo player, a computer coder and a junior at a top private high school. He is also dyslexic, so it takes him twice as long as his peers to read any text. For students like Raphael, ebooks can be a gamechanger. He can carry his huge class load around in his pocket, reading on his phone during his long bus commute. He can use multi-modal reading devices or listen to texts at 2x speed. All of these innovations mean Raphael can spend more time in the water, coding apps or with his family. He’s on a path to excel—at school and in life.