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.

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.

Let's Stop Thinking of Accessibility Compliance as Scary

October 1, 2019 9:57:09 AM EDT

Looming lawsuits and words like "compliance" can make accessibility seem scary — or maybe worse, so daunting that we ignore it entirely.

But here's the thing: accessibility isn't scary; inaccessibility is.

Public Sector Websites in the U.K. Have to be Accessible, Regulations Go into Effect This Week

September 24, 2019 10:41:02 AM EDT

As of September 23, 2019, all new websites in the U.K. and any published after September, 23, 2018, must be accessible.

Simon Hart, the Minister for Implementation, said, "This is another positive step in our longstanding commitment to ensuring digital services are accessible for all users and to encourage improved equality of access to public information and services."

How to Hire Top Talent with an Accessibility Mindset

September 20, 2019 10:13:00 AM EDT

As a business, you want to hire the best candidates for the job. However, you also want to emphasize accessibility within your organization without compromising your search for the top talent.

Fortunately, these two different motivations don’t have to be in conflict. By looking for people with the six traits below, you might improve your odds of hiring outstanding employees who also are a good fit for the pro-accessibility mindset.

Accessible Astronomy Sounds Great at Harvard Lab

September 18, 2019 10:15:00 AM EDT

There are new ways to study one of the oldest sciences. Allyson Bieryla, manager of the Astronomy Lab and Clay Telescope at Harvard University, has brought in and developed technology that allows people who are blind or have visual disabilities to engage in astronomy using their senses of hearing and touch.

LEGO Releases Audio and Braille Instructions Pilot Program

September 12, 2019 10:30:07 AM EDT

Back in 2010, thirteen-year-old Matthew Shifrin wanted to build a LEGO castle. Following the LEGO building instructions at the time, which consisted only of photographs, was just about impossible for someone blind, like Matthew. Fortunately, his babysitter Lilya Finkel stepped in and gave him a binder of Braille instructions she had written for him of the “Battle of Alamut” castle LEGO set. Due to the duo’s efforts since then, LEGO announced in August 2019 that it has created a pilot program for audio and Braille instructions.

Who Decides If a Website Is Accessible?

September 10, 2019 10:27:00 AM EDT

Web accessibility is a hot topic and it's here to stay — but with so many organizations learning and implementing the guiding principles and best practices, who actually gets to decide whether or not a website is accessible?

It's Okay to Feel Good About Accessibility

September 5, 2019 10:00:12 AM EDT

It's no secret web accessibility lawsuits are on the rise and that industries from education to retail to hospitality are increasingly adding compliance measures to help their websites and apps stay compliant with laws like the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

With so much focus on the compliance aspect of accessibility, here's a reminder that you're doing the right thing for your customers and your business while improving everyone's experience.

Labor Day and Accessibility: Celebrate and Empower All Workers

September 3, 2019 9:40:00 AM EDT

Labor Day 2019 marked the 125th as a national holiday, a day the US Department of Labor says "celebrates and honors the greatest worker in the world – the American worker." Let's be certain we include the contributions of the members of the workforce with disabilities in that celebration and continue to work to create a more inclusive and more accessible workplace that empowers the future achievements of all workers.

8 Tips for Designing Websites with People with Disabilities in Mind

August 30, 2019 12:02:58 PM EDT

One of the biggest challenges web designers and content creators face when working to resolve accessibility issues is trying to squeeze accessible solutions back into an otherwise finished design. A much easier, and of course accessible, approach is to consider people with disabilities in the design from the beginning — but asking someone to do this and guiding them on how with actionable ideas are very different things, as it isn't always easy or intuitive.

Here are tips for a smoother, more accessible design approach.

7 Questions to Ask Your Website Host or Agency About Accessibility

August 28, 2019 10:11:00 AM EDT

Most businesses rely on third-parties for at least some of their website needs — the website may have been designed by a vendor, it may live on a vendor's platform or use their components and templates, or the content could even be managed entirely or partially by a vendor on an ongoing basis.

Here are 7 questions to ask your vendors about accessibility.

Give Yourself an Accessibility Test: Turn On High Contrast

August 26, 2019 10:17:24 AM EDT

For people who need or want to navigate the web with high contrast enabled, these settings offer a free and pretty reliable way to do so. High contrast also gives you a fast and easy way to identify some accessibility issues on your website you might not catch otherwise.

Use Caution with Automated Tools that Promise 100% Accessibility Compliance

August 23, 2019 12:01:07 PM EDT

Automated accessibility testing tools, powered by artificial intelligence (AI) and code-scanning technology, can be an important part of an accessibility testing plan — but, they must remain just a part. Automated testing on its own should not replace manual testing by an accessibility expert and should not be used as the only way to show compliance.

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