Re: Skype issues that I see, response to several messages on this list today

Doug Lee

You are kind. :-)

Realistically though, the world started going from mostly Skype to a diverse set of alternatives years ago. The virus only served to make more urgent the need for us to keep up with all of those alternatives. Also, NVDA has
become popular enough that scripting for JAWS is no longer enough to fill the needs of everyone. The significant increase in choices does indeed complicate my life, but so it goes in general. In short, the telecommunication
landscape and the screen reader landscape are both going the way of the Roman empire; so no one, no solution, and no script will anymore enjoy Caesar status. :-)

As it happens, I have resumed work on Skype UWP scripts even though I expect Skype UWP to change completely in very short order. The reason is the arrival of this Meet Now service by Microsoft, whereby one can build a
permanent call/meeting that is open to all, even to those with no Skype and with Skype but no Skype account. Clicking a shared Meet Now link seems to open Skype UWP on most Windows 10 machines. I saw information about this a
day or two ago and resumed Skype UWP work last night. I don't have an ETA for a script update yet though.

On Wed, Apr 08, 2020 at 12:10:53PM -0400, Mike DeZinno wrote:
Good day All,
Just to way-in on this topic; I am also finding the need to explore
other software like Team Talk, Zoom, and others
I feel badly for Doug Lee, who has now for several years tried against
all odds to make Skype work for us like it once did, only to keep
having to fix something that keeps getting more difficult to keep up
with because of Skype's constant changes and quirks. .
Just like we all had to let go of Skype 7.xx versions I guess we should
maybe get ready to some day do the same with Skype in general and be
open to finding software that is more naturally accessible to the blind
I say these things not out of anger but rather out of an honest feeling
of guilt that we keep needing so much of Doug's time spent just trying
to not get too far behind with all the work he needs to do and re-do
just to keep Skype almost working day to day.
Many heart felt thanks to you Doug for all you do for us.
Stay well all,
Mike in SC
At 10:57 AM 4/8/2020 Wednesday, you wrote:

Hi Doug,
Thank you for the list of Skype alternatives. I tested some of them,
and I will test TeamTalk, TeamSpeak and Zello, because the ones I
tried are not at least as good as the old Skype for Desktop.
----- Original Message ----- From: "Doug Lee" <dgl@...>
To: <>
Sent: Sunday, April 05, 2020 3:38 PM
Subject: Re: [skypeenglish] Skype issues that I see, response to
several messages on this list today

I can confirm that Skype can be slow to switch chats. I'm pretty
sure that happens regardless of whether you run scripts, or even
JAWS; but someone please prove me wrong if possible.
The hotkey for moving to message history is also not working as well
as it once did, but I may be able to fix that one. I noticed it
earlier this weekend but did not include it in my message because I
wanted to test it
further before commenting on it.
As for Skype alternatives, here's a somewhat complete list of what
I've worked with lately, in no particular order. This list includes
of course only the clients and platforms I've seen and/or scripted
in a non-professional
setting; i.e., I've scripted other clients under contract and am not
listing those here.
I have scripts for Unigram, the Windows 10 Telegram client that is
most accessible. The app comes from the Windows Store; the scripts
come from [1]
In fact, my use of Unigram includes hosting my project update
announcement channel there, along with a paired discussion group for
the things I release. See my contact page for current details:
A while ago, I did a bit of Discord scripting for a couple of folks;
but those are surely pretty out of date by now. I'm told that
Discord text chatting is still pretty accessible though.
I have fairly comprehensive scripts for Slack at
[3] and some very soon to be
significantly updated scripts for Microsoft Teams, which will
replace Skype For Business (SFB), at
Both of those are more for the professional arena I think, but I
think they can be used outside of that environment.
I am not listing my SFB scripts here, though I have three different
sets of those for different SFB versions, because as I said, Teams
will be replacing SFB. Also, SFB is exclusively for professional
settings as far as I know.
Of course there's also Zoom, which is probably the most popular of
the platforms now for voice. It also supports text chatting, and
scripts for that one are included in JAWS 2020 and also are
available from Bryan Hartgen.
Then we have TeamTalk and TeamSpeak, which I scripted as well:
[5] and
Those are also more known for voice but do support texting.
TeamSpeak will at some point move to a new structure that has global
text chat support much like Discord, but the date for that has
remained uncertain for quite some
months by now.
And I guess I will complete my list with that old but amazingly
still kickin' client known as Zello. I still have scripts for that
one at [7] though I rarely work on that
one because I long ago got
tired of wrestling with bugs in the Windows client. Still, the
platform survives and gets used, especially in emergency settings
from all I hear, though again, more for voice than for text I think.
On Sun, Apr 05, 2020 at 03:09:30PM +0300, Octavian Rasnita wrote:
Even worse then those things is that the hotkey Control+Insert+Y to
move to
the list of chat messages is not working anymore, sometimes after
Skype nothing happends when pressing Shift+Tab or Tab for moving
there, and
this for several minutes, also sometimes Skype appears as locked for
minutes when pressing Alt+1, so if somebody sends me a message, I am
able to read that message immediately until Skype starts working
This happends when using latest Skype with your scripts under
Windows 7.
Under Windows 10 there are many more other bad things that appear in
other applications, so passing to Windows 10 is not a solution.
You tested more text and voice chatting apps. Do you know if there
is one
that's better accessible for the blind and easier to use than Skype?
----- Original Message ----- From: "Doug Lee" <dgl@...>
To: <>
Sent: Sunday, April 05, 2020 12:09 AM
Subject: [skypeenglish] Skype issues that I see, response to several
messages on this list today

Let me address some claims I've seen, today on this list and
over time, about Skype for Windows, and some of my own claims
Claim 1: Skype online status is sometimes wrong.
True. In the past few weeks, I've seen a Skype status of "Last seen
ago" for contacts I saw less than six days earlier. To my initial
that message has for some time been widely recognized as meaning
that you
blocked by the contact. I find this no longer to be the case; I've
friends and professional colleagues alike display as "Last seen days
without having blocked me.
Claim 2: Skype mood text can be wrong.
True. For quite a while and through several Skype 8 versions, I've
the mood text for one contact stay active while I switched through
with several other contacts, until I happen to open a chat with
who actually has a mood text. In short, the mood text does not clear
it is changed to a new message. I have repeatedly reported this bug
Microsoft but have not seen any sign of it being addressed.
Claim 3: "File sent" no longer speaks after a file transfer.
Not sure about this one. I do know that "File sent" finally stopped
speaking after the sending of a chat message, but I don't send files
I also know that both of those messages are not likely to speak if
split your
chat windows out from the main Skype window, because of the way the
notifications work.
Claim 4: Skype UWP for Windows 10 is going away.
Mixed. Reliable indications exist that Skype UWP will become like,
become equal to, Skype for Windows Desktop in some way. I don't know
the Store app is going away entirely; but since it comes with
Windows 10
now, I
doubt it. Those on the Windows Insider program, which I am not, can
probably say more about this one.
Claim 5: Focus sticks to the "1 star" button after a Skype-to-phone
Uncertain but reliably reported. If anyone else has seen this one,
let me know. I have not seen this one on my machine, and I make a
number of Skype-to-phone calls; but I may have just jumped past it
I hope this message helps clear up a few uncertainties for people.
Doug Lee               Â
dgl@...               [8]
Level Access            doug.lee@...
"Believe, when you are most unhappy, that there is something for you
to do in the world. So long as you can sweeten another's pain, life
not in vain." --Helen Keller

Doug Lee               Â
dgl@...               [10]
Level Access            doug.lee@...
"The most exhausting thing in life is being insincere."
      - Anne Morrow Lindbergh {American Author}


13. Re: [skypeenglish] Skype issues that I see, response to several messages on this list today
14. mailto:mike@...?subject=Private: Re: Re: [skypeenglish] Skype issues that I see, response to several messages on this list today

Doug Lee dgl@...
Level Access doug.lee@...
What is most worth paying for, you buy with the life you live.

Join to automatically receive all group messages.