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.

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.

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!

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.

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?

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

What Are the Four Major Categories of Accessibility?

September 13, 2019 12:05:15 PM EDT

The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) are organized by four main principles, which state that content must be POUR: Perceivable, Operable, Understandable, and Robust. WCAG is the most-referenced set of standards in website accessibility lawsuits and is widely considered the best way to achieve accessibility.

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.

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