Remembering Jim Thatcher, One of the Earliest Digital Equality Champions

December 14, 2019 10:00:00 AM EST

The accessibility community mourns the loss of one of its most brilliant and compassionate pioneers. Jim Thatcher passed away on December 7, 2019.

The Next Time You...

December 12, 2019 1:48:50 PM EST

Sometimes, getting accessibility right takes a lot of thought and requires the technical guidance of a trusted accessibility partner. Sometimes, you can be well on the right path by having go-to checkpoints for certain content types. Here are a few of those to keep handy.

Waiting for an ADA Demand Letter to Take Accessibility Seriously?

December 9, 2019 10:30:00 AM EST

Web accessibility lawsuits under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) are proliferating, with thousands filed in just the last two years. However, many organizations seem to have adopted a “wait it out” strategy, expecting that they’ll deal with the question of accessibility if and when they receive an ADA demand letter.

Yet, businesses who wait to implement digital accessibility until after receiving an ADA demand letter may be both tempting fate and holding themselves back from achieving their full potential.

Brands Are Losing Billions by Not Being Digitally Accessible

December 5, 2019 9:15:00 AM EST

While more and more companies are realizing the benefits of improving web accessibility, many more are losing billions by not making their platforms usable for people with disabilities. Americans with disabilities have $490 billion in disposable income, yet too many websites are failing to meet their needs — or capture their business.

5 Smartphone Usage Statistics and the Growing Importance of Mobile Accessibility

December 2, 2019 11:56:22 AM EST

Thinking of mobile accessibility as secondary, or skipping it altogether, puts organizations at legal risk and makes it likely that a large percentage of users will have negative or even unusable experiences. Here are five stats to show why.

Get Your Braille and Large Print Letters from Santa: 2019

November 30, 2019 9:11:30 AM EST

Organizations from around the world have teamed up again this year with Santa’s elves in sending out Braille letters from Santa. You can request one using this list of organizations. They’ve got a direct line to Santa and the North Pole — but act fast!

A Message of Accessibility Thanks

November 28, 2019 9:40:00 AM EST

Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at the Bureau of Internet Accessibility!

This year, we have so much to be thankful for. Thank you, all of you, for all that you do to further the mission of achieving accessibility.

Xbox Accessibility Guidelines Provide Best Practices So More Gamers Can Play

November 22, 2019 10:15:00 AM EST

To further their mission of Xbox Accessibility, Microsoft released Xbox Accessibility Guidelines, "a set of best practices that have been developed in partnership with industry experts and members of the gaming and disability community."

Twenty-three guidelines are included, and for each guideline Microsoft provides an Overview, Implementation Guidelines, Applicable personas, and Resources or Tools.

We Haven't Received Customer Complaints About Accessibility, So We Don't Have a Problem, Right?

November 19, 2019 9:38:00 AM EST

It can be tempting to believe that if you aren't aware of any customer complaints related to the accessibility of your website or app, that there must not be any accessibility issues — or at least any issues serious enough to bother making accessibility improvements.

Here are five reasons no customer complaints doesn't mean no accessibility issues.

The Problem with Not Making Websites Accessible by Default

November 18, 2019 9:13:00 AM EST

Some website operators, just like the owners of some physical locations, approach accessibility in this way: they allow major accessibility gaps to exist and rely on people with disabilities to ask for accommodations. While it's better than giving people no options for access, even if with good intentions, not making websites accessible by default has several serious issues.

Survey: Only Half of Students with Disabilities Rate Their College's Accessibility Support Positively

November 14, 2019 10:30:00 AM EST

According to a 2019 Study of Undergraduate Students and Information Technology conducted by EDUCAUSE Center for Analysis and Research, only half of students with disabilities who need accommodations or accessible technology gave their institutions a positive rating.

Honor Veterans with Website Accessibility

November 12, 2019 8:57:11 AM EST

Veterans Day is observed every year on November 11 to honor the great veterans who have served. The day is a reminder to say thank you to our service members for their bravery and sacrifice, and for many that includes service-related disabilities.

One way to honor veterans is to ensure that disabilities, like those resulting from military service protecting our nation, don't unnecessarily prevent them from accessing public goods and services, including those online.

The World's Most Popular Websites Share a Commitment to Accessibility. Here's How They Approach It.

November 7, 2019 10:37:51 AM EST

It is not a coincidence that the top six most popular websites in the world have all made visible, concrete commitments to improving web accessibility.

Google, YouTube, Facebook, Amazon, Yahoo, and Twitter all realize that accessibility doesn't just expand their user base, it has powerful additional benefits like improving SEO and furthering the missions of their corporate social responsibility.

So what does web accessibility look like for these tech titans?

Vimeo Announces Accessibility Updates to Their Video Player

November 5, 2019 9:15:27 AM EST

In September, Vimeo announced new accessibility updates to their video player.

The video-sharing platform currently serves more than 90 million creators worldwide. With the recent updates, more people should be able to use the service.

Here are the changes and how they impact accessibility.

Career Websites Must Be Accessible. Is Yours?

November 4, 2019 10:17:00 AM EST

People with disabilities sometimes encounter unnecessary barriers that aren’t faced by people without disabilities in both their personal and professional lives. In too many instances, these obstacles have made it more difficult for many people with vision, hearing, motor, and cognitive disabilities from seeking and obtaining gainful employment.

Dyslexia Awareness Month and How Web Accessibility Can Help

October 31, 2019 4:29:33 PM EDT

Did you know October is Dyslexia Awareness Month? The aim of Dyslexia Awareness Month is, of course, to bring awareness to an often-misunderstood neurological condition. It also offers a prime reminder of how certain web accessibility best practices can make a big difference in making web content easier to use for people with dyslexia.

World Stroke Day: Awareness and How Web Accessibility Can Help

October 29, 2019 10:11:59 AM EDT

October 29 is World Stroke Day, bringing awareness to the leading cause of disability and one of the leading causes of death in the United States.

The effects of stroke vary, but many of the commonly-resulting disabilities and impairments are some of the key areas for which web accessibility best practices work to solve when it comes to navigating the digital world.

Top 5 Ways to Make Podcasts Accessible

October 26, 2019 9:30:00 AM EDT

If you're a podcaster, you need to ensure that your material is readily available for all audience members. Here are five ways to make podcasts more accessible.

Amazon Alexa's Show and Tell Can Identify Groceries for People Who are Blind, Have Low Vision

October 23, 2019 10:33:00 AM EDT

Amazon has a product called Echo Show that has a powerful accessibility feature for those who are blind, have low vision, or would otherwise benefit from product identification.

By asking your Echo Show, "Alexa, what am I holding?," Alexa will help identify the item.

You Might Be an Accessibility Champion If You...

October 22, 2019 9:30:00 AM EDT

As is true of every skill or calling, even the most seasoned accessibility professional was once a novice. If you are considering a career in accessibility or have interest in being a leader in advancing accessibility initiatives from whatever role you're in, you might already be an accessibility champion in the making.

2019 Holiday Shopping Predictions and Where Digital Accessibility Fits In

October 16, 2019 10:30:00 AM EDT

The 2019 holiday shopping season is almost upon us.

That means there are plenty of potential sale opportunities for your business. But if your website isn’t accessible, it also means you’re going to lose a a lot of those sales.

Why a Website Redesign Is the Perfect Time to Get Accessibility Right

October 15, 2019 9:29:54 AM EDT

Redesigning your website offers the perfect opportunity to consider accessibility. Rather than creating your site and trying to implement improvements later, begin with accessibility in mind.

Not only can you work in a timely, cost-efficient manner, but you can also optimize your site from the start, accommodate more users, and integrate accessibility as a top priority in your organization.

Supreme Court Denies Petition to Hear Domino's Accessibility Case

October 8, 2019 10:49:39 AM EDT

The Domino's accessibility case will not be heard by the Supreme Court of the United States, effectively upholding the Ninth Circuit opinion from earlier this year that says their website and app must be accessible. Plus, ten reasons the pizza company's strategy was a mistake.

Hulu Makes Content More Accessible to People Who Are Blind, Have Visual Impairments

October 7, 2019 10:15:00 AM EDT

Hulu rolled out two accessibility enhancements to improve the navigation and experience of the streaming provider's content, especially for people who are blind or have visual impairments:

  • Better text legibility due to enhanced opacity and contrast
  • A screen reader to guide users through the platform

Greater Digital Independence Through Eye Tracking

October 4, 2019 10:25:00 AM EDT

Eye tracking devices can help people with mobility disabilities meet the challenges of communicating and interacting with the world. The devices allow a computer to be controlled using only eye movements, which can be critical when a person is unable to use a mouse or keyboard. The process, called gaze interaction, uses eye tracking technology to determine exactly where the user is looking on the computer screen or within special eye tracking glasses.

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