Barrier free learning on the web is one of the greatest, challenges for computer science in the future. While the growth of the internet was exponential in the last years, still many communities don't benefit from web technology for their learning issues due to improper tools and constricted communication processes. These problems increase when developing applications for communities of people with special needs. In this paper we present the case study of a cooperative web-learning environment called SOCRATES to overcome difficulties in new media usage. It supports a learning community comprising patients suffering from aphasia (aphasics), therapists, researchers on linguistics, and system developers. Aphasics using SOCRATES are now able to communicate freely among others without having to be afraid that they might get lost in rapid conversation and are now able to meet others over spatial distances while protecting their privacy in an insular virtual community.