Now the Blind Have Access to Newspaper Information!

NFB-NEWSLINE®: Free Service to Those Who Cannot Read Regular Newsprint

Lifetime learning, including detailed awareness of current events, is part of what makes a good citizen, a successful employee or employer, and a valuable participant in community life. Without ready access to information, none of us can reach his or her full potential. Until 1995, the nation's blind did not have the promise of ready access to a fundamental source of such information—the daily newspaper. But now the National Federation of the Blind has created NFB-NEWSLINE.

NFB-NEWSLINE is at last making it possible for blind individuals to gain access to the information in newspapers at the same time as their sighted colleagues, friends, and family members. Blind professionals, for example, can now converse on relevant topics, no longer being under informed about information critical to their professions or left out at social functions when the latest editorial is discussed. Beyond this, a wealth of information primarily found in newspapers is now available to the blind on an equal footing, making possible their participation in the life of the community on the basis of equality.

The internet provides sighted individuals access to thousands of newspapers and magazines with just a quick search. NFB-NEWSLINE is the only system that will bring the blind so much to choose from, at the time when the subscriber wishes to read. More and more papers are beginning to understand that blind and visually impaired individuals, just as the sighted, need to have access to their local papers. The numbers of participating papers are steadily growing.

The service handles thousands of phone calls each day for individuals across the country who now access daily newspapers and magazines as never before. The toll-free centralized call-in center provides service on demand to any subscriber. This also enables those who cannot read conventional print to have access to all content offered on NFB-NEWSLINE when traveling throughout the United States twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.

Every day, a subscriber can choose that day's, the previous day's, or the previous Sunday's issue of any newspaper in the service. On NFB-NEWSLINE, the user can easily choose which newspaper, section, and article to read using a standard touch-tone telephone. The menu provided allows the user to change the speed and voice quality, spell out words, or search for a particular word or subject.

Additional newspapers and magazines will be added, and future upgrades will allow more options, such as new "voices" and newspapers in other languages.

NFB-NEWSLINE now offers more choices than ever, including special local channels to distribute announcements of specific interest to the blind.

Astounding Option 5: National and Local Papers

Option five has been reinvented, making it even easier to read any newspaper on NFB-NEWSLINE. Now, after selecting Option 5, callers will be asked to choose the state where their newspaper is published. Then, they will select from a list of all papers from that state. There's no more need to scroll through our ever-growing list of local and national papers including USA Today, The New York Times, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, The Christian Science Monitor, and the Wall Street Journal.

How To Sign Up

Anyone who cannot read printed newspapers due to blindness or a physical disability is eligible to receive NFB-NEWSLINE. Register by calling Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired (401) 222-2300, or by calling the National Federation of the Blind of Rhode Island to request an application. You may also fill out this online form or download an application (PDF version | Word document version) to register. After your registration is processed, you'll receive a letter containing your activation codes and instructions for how to begin reading the newspaper with NFB-NEWSLINE.


To find out how to operate NFB-NEWSLINE, view the combined General Users Guide and Advanced Features Guide.

Now You Can Get the Newspaper in Your Email Inbox!

On July 1, 2006, NFB-NEWSLINE announced a new feature for our subscribers on the go. We can now email you the newspapers to your inbox in DAISY 3 format. This allows subscribers to read the newspaper on their PC or portable device. Using this method our subscribers can be more portable, and also help save us money on our phone bill. To sign up for this service you must first be a registered NFB-NEWSLINE user. If you are already a subscriber you can fill in the subscribe to email delivery or download and print out a form and return it to us. You will receive a confirmation email with instructions once you have been signed up for email delivery.