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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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