According to the American Foundation for the Blind, the 2018 National Health Interview Survey reported that 32.2 million American adults experience vision loss.
That’s a lot of people who share your frustration. But Netflix is omniscient.
This October, Netflix unveiled its “Watch Movies Like a Blind Person” (WMLBP) feature for subscribers in recognition of Blind Awareness Month.
“At Netflix, we work hard to improve the experience of our members because that means increased profits. In 2015, we enabled audio descriptions for ‘Daredevil’ and select titles for our visually impaired subscribers,” said Bryan White, director of content operations at Netflix. “This year, we wanted to be all-inclusive because it’s trendy. So instead of releasing several thousand more movies with audio descriptions for just the visually impaired, we are proud to announce the WMLBP feature is for everyone. This way, we show we love all sorts of peoples!”
Subscribers can choose from a variety of eye conditions and diseases such as glaucoma, Stargardt disease, retinitis pigmentosa, cataracts, color blindness and more.
“Just think Instagram, but for movies. So instead of ‘X-Pro II’ or ‘Inkwell’ filters, you can choose ‘Cataracts’ to blur the entire screen, or ‘Stargardt’s’ to blot out the center of the movie!” said White. “And the WMLBP feature is available for all movies, not just the ones with blind actors or perfectly sighted people fake acting like blind people. Another inclusivity win for Netflix!”
The WMLBP feature is getting the thumbs up from subscribers so far. “I was getting arm cramps watching movies through a bathroom tissue roll to simulate my wife’s retinitis pigmentosa,” said Dominic Burghardt, whose empathy scores him “get laid” points with his wife. “This is a gamechanger! Don’t tell my wife — she’ll get jealous — but my favorite so far is the ‘Age-Related Macular Degeneration’ feature!”