Live Transcribe Gives Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Individuals Instant Captions with Speech Recognition Technology

January 28, 2020 10:19:53 AM EST

There's a mobile app, released by Google in February 2019, called Live Transcribe that is aimed to help people who are deaf and hard of hearing more-easily have conversations with people who are hearing. The app uses speech recognition technology to transcribe speech into text directly on the phone screen, nearly in real-time.

Adult Website Pornhub Sued Over Closed Captions

January 27, 2020 10:13:00 AM EST

A New York man is suing Pornhub over the lack of closed captioning on videos.

Yaroslav Suris, who is deaf according to the court document, has filed a class action suit against the adult website operators on behalf of himself and others who are deaf or hard of hearing. The complaint states that the website has videos without closed captions, or with limited closed captions, and thus violates the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Gift Card Accessibility: Electronic Gift Cards Must Be Accessible, Too

January 21, 2020 10:24:10 AM EST

Retailers and restaurants nationwide are taking notice of the new attention — and lawsuits — surrounding gift cards, and specifically whether they violate the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) when they don't include Braille. As businesses prepare strategies for how to make those public accommodations accessible, they should stay mindful that gift cards that are bought and used electronically (eGift cards) have to be accessible to people with disabilities, too.

3 Times Accessibility and Disability Stats Matter (and 3 Times They Don't)

January 18, 2020 10:50:27 AM EST

One of the most fascinating things about statistics and facts in general is that people can use the exact same information to tell very different stories. When it comes to opportunity and requirements surrounding digital accessibility, this is no different.

When the number of people with disabilities is used to show opportunity, when customer feedback is used to make improvements, and when accessibility metrics are used to show ongoing commitment, it matters.

The Growing Importance of Digital Accessibility in the Hospitality Industry

January 14, 2020 10:27:52 AM EST

Before people are in hotel rooms, they're online researching and booking hotel rooms. As digital continues to increasingly drive the hospitality customer experience, accessibility needs to remain a key consideration or hotels may find themselves unintentionally alienating large segments of the population and may be subject to digital accessibility lawsuits.

Four Easy Accessibility Resolutions for the New Year

January 8, 2020 8:34:58 AM EST

Here are four easy resolutions anyone can make this new year to help broaden their knowledge and bridge the digital divide.

  1. Brush up on your accessibility knowledge
  2. Introduce ten people to digital accessibility
  3. Improve social media accessibility
  4. Ask for accessibility

Why Accessibility Is a Critical Piece of Tech Trends for 2020

January 7, 2020 10:21:51 AM EST

As digital technologies become an ever-greater part of our lives, it’s more important than ever to understand how they intersect with accessibility. Here are four of the hottest tech trends for 2020, and how accessibility can play a crucial role for each one.

Omnichannel Stats Highlight Need for Accessibility Now

January 7, 2020 10:05:08 AM EST

The data shows that customers may not consider physical and digital spaces to have much of a barrier between one another, but rather as extensions of the other.

To the customer, the brand is the brand, so they often expect seamless transitions between the physical and the digital and the same level of service across all channels — and this includes accessibility.

Surprised by Web Accessibility Complaints?

December 31, 2019 9:58:04 AM EST

Should people be surprised when inaccessibility leads to bad experiences, complaints, or even lawsuits? Sometimes when the dots aren't connected in practical ways, some of the rules of accessibility might seem arbitrary. However, they are anything but, and asking the questions in a different way can help people further their understanding of how they impact real people.

Are Website Accessibility and Digital Accessibility the Same?

December 28, 2019 11:21:03 AM EST

The terms website accessibility and digital accessibility have a lot of overlap and are often used interchangeably, but they can mean different things.

Website accessibility specifically refers to the principle that websites and associated content and technologies should be equally accessible to those with and without disabilities.

Digital accessibility includes web accessibility but also refers to the accessibility of anything digital such as video, audio, electronic documents, animations, kiosks, and mobile apps.

Digital Accessibility Year in Review: 2019

December 27, 2019 3:40:23 PM EST

Digital accessibility continues to pick up steam with more organizations realizing its value and more individuals developing awareness and expertise every day. Reflecting on all that has transpired in 2019 makes it clear that accessibility will keep trending up, perhaps leading to an even more eventful 2020, which is almost hard to imagine.

Here's a snapshot of this past year in digital accessibility.

What Are Accessibility Features of a Website?

December 18, 2019 10:33:00 AM EST

Website accessibility features are the elements of a site designed to improve the ability of people with disabilities to independently use it. Sometimes websites include extra options specifically to enhance some people's use, but usually accessibility features are integrated into a well-coded website that is accessible by default.

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?

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