Digital Accessibility Roundup February 2020

So many great articles around digital accessibility lately! Here are some (with author and quote/summary) which I thought were very useful.

  • Link Targets and 3.2.5 by Adrian Roselli @aadrian.
    “Regardless of what accessibility conformance level you target, do not arbitrarily open links in a new window or tab. If you are required to do so anyway, inform users in text.”
  • [ARIA] Roles and relationships by Sarah Higley @codingChaos.
    “even small mistakes in using these roles can take a user on a very bad trip”
  • Squarespace, Wix, & Weebly: Accessibility Review by @TerrillThompson.
    “For accessibility, avoid Weebly. Both Squarespace and Wix are capable of creating accessible sites, but the user has to be looking to do so—it isn’t gonna happen by default.”

  • On custom select dropdowns:
  • Studies/statistics on current state of web accessibility:
    • Higher Ed in 4k Project by PopeTech.
      “…93.331% of pages had detectable WCAG violations. There were a total of 7,464,465 detectable errors found or 23.8 errors per page.”
    • Click-Away Pound Survey (2019) by @CAPsurvey.
      “In 2016, the survey found that more than 4 million people abandoned a retail website because of the barriers they found, taking with them an estimated spend of £11.75 billion. In 2019, that lost business, the ‘Click-Away Pound’, has grown to £17.1 billion.”
  • My Priority of Methods for Labeling a Control by Adrian Roselli @aadrian.
    Adrian explains why explicit HTML label association is best.
  • Operating System and Browser Accessibility Display Modes by Eric Bailey @ericwbailey.
    “Five such modes are Dark Mode, Increased Contrast Mode, Inverted Colors Mode, Reduced Motion Mode, and High Contrast Mode. Following is an explanation of each of these mode, who can benefit from it, how to enable it on your device or browser (if supported), and how to work with it in code.”
  • Checking 3rd Party Vendors’ Product Accessibility by @vavroom via @knowbility.
    • “You may have difficulty finding a fully accessible solution. Do take the time to run some simple tests to get a better feel for the product. The more precise your questions and requirements about accessibility, the more likely you are to be able to determine if a product meets your needs. And the more protected you’ll be should the product fail to meet expectations.”
    • Also: Vendor Responsibilities for Accessibility by Jay Wyant @jay_wyant.
  • Pixels vs. Relative Units in CSS: why it’s still a big deal by Kathleen McMahon @resource11.
    “Remember, users really do change their settings under the hood, and we should be maintaining users’ control over their own browsing experience. If you use relative CSS units for your typography styles, you can maintain the fidelity of your layouts without negatively impacting the needs of your users.”
  • How accessible is the HTML video player? by Scott Vinkle @svinkle.
    “relying on native video players should be used with caution…I found most to have poor keyboard and screen reader support, which may lead to frustrated users”
  • And finally, congrats @WebAIM on your 20-year anniversary! Thank you for your tremendous leadership in web accessibility.
dog herding group of sheep
Sheepdog “rounding up” some sheep.

Passing of Joseph O’Connor

I’m deeply saddened to hear that Joseph O’Connor, tremendous accessibility advocate, recently died. His passing was announced on his personal website; please read Remembering Joseph O’Connor (1953 – 2020). Joseph was highly loved and respected in the accessibility community and will be sorely missed.

Joseph suffered from chronic illness and experienced serious pain especially over the last years of his life. One-and-a-half years ago, he wrote about a profound conference proposal Accessible Death in which planned his own inclusive funeral (the proposal was not accepted).

Head shot of Joseph and Linda O'Connor
Joseph and his wife. Photo credit: black telephone website

Joseph was a big contributor to the accessibility of WordPress and was a guest on Web Axe Podcast 100: Joe & Joseph on WordPress Accessibility (Sep. 2014). I presented with Joseph on Accessibility of Twitter at CSUN back in 2010 which was a terrific experience.

Below are some touching tweets about his passing. Rest in peace, my friend.

Addendum

Tweets about Joseph O’Connor

https://twitter.com/mak_en/status/1214732865335750656

Digital Accessibility Jobs, November 2019

Many more tremendous opportunities in the field of digital accessibility.

As always, watch out for more job listings on Twitter via @a11yJobs, @EasyChirp, @LyndonDunbar, and me @WebAxe.

Accessibility Toronto Conference 2019 Summary

The third annual Accessibility Toronto Conference was held recently at TELUS in downtown Toronto, Ontario, Canada. On Twitter, the hash tag is #a11yTO and the account is @a11yTO.

Accessibility Toronto Conference logo

And for the first time, both an Accessibility In Real Life conference (#a11yIRL) and a conference dedicated to accessible gaming (#a11yTOGaming). They were run the day before and after the main conference. All events were a big success!

The week even included a few social events in the evening including an entertaining karaoke party hosted by Shopify and a Tweetup hosted by Slack.

A theme which seemed to emerge from the conferences collectively was: Design *with* people with disabilities, not *for* people with disabilities.

large room with many people seating; a few people on stage in front; there is a monitor on right and live captions on left

Other notables from the conference were the adjustable desk on stage and a video puppet which reminded attendees when the sessions are about to start!

See below for a list of available presentation resources (from the a11yTO conference), selected tweets, and a few excellent conference reviews. See you there next year?

Presentation Resources (partial)

Tweets

https://twitter.com/ShellELittle/status/1187368065933234179

Other Reviews

U.S. Supreme Court Favors Digital Accessibility in Domino’s Case

A favorable decision was made yesterday (October 7, 2019) in the United States regarding digital accessibility and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA).

The U.S. Supreme Court denied to hear Domino’s Pizza appeal of the Ninth Circuit federal appeals court decision which allowed the case to be heard. So the Ninth Circuit decision for Domino’s v. Robles stands, hooray! Digital products which are a public accommodation must be accessible or will be subject to a lawsuit (and probably lose).

The accessibility community is dumbfounded and outraged as to why Domino’s, a national pizza chain in the U.S., would spend so much money and effort into fighting digital equality rather than making their digital services accessible to all, which would greatly increase their potential customer base (and avoid bad publicity!)

Here’s Domino’s statement about the Supreme Court’s decision. Domino’s doesn’t admit that besides convenience, inclusiveness, and equality, ordering online provides other perks that cannot be received in another way, such as discounts, coupons, and rewards points. Although their call for DOJ regulation has some merit, it’s more of an unwarranted excuse. Regulations aren’t completely necessary; if passed, they would likely still be WCAG 2.0 AA, and digital products would still be subject to lawsuits.

For lots of legalese, here is the the Domino’s case (PDF) and the Domino’s ruling (PDF). See below for a list of related articles and tweets.

Domino's Pizza logo with line thru it

Articles

Tweets

https://twitter.com/accessibility20/status/1181228718439780352