Although WebAIM is my go-to source for screen reader questions, I am always looking for good tips for using JAWS and NVDA. This recent blog post titled Cheat Sheet: Screen Reader Commands for JAWS, NVDA Web by Jyoti Verma on Barrier Break has some really nifty tips.
News & Updates
In this EnvatoTuts blog post from Carie Fisher titled Designing Accessible Content: Typography, Font Styling, and Structure you’ll find great tips for making your textual content more accessible, including tips for font choice, font sizing and style, color contrast, and layout.
We talk a lot about the importance of keyboard focus when it comes to web accessibility. In a recent blog post entitled Focusing on Focus Styles Eric Bailey goes over the CSS techniques that will allow you to add accessible focus styles to all of your mouse and touch input elements so that people who use a keyboard, a mouse, a switch control, a mouth stick, or other assistive device can successfully interact with your page.
You may have heard about the new content editor that will be rolling out to WordPress sites with version 5.0, and if you have then you are aware of the kerfuffle that surrounds the decision to move forward with Gutenberg despite its accessibility problems. If you haven’t been following along, get caught up with Andy Bell’s recent post on Smashing Magazine called What Can Be Learned From The Gutenberg Accessibility Situation?
Adding alternative text to your images is one of the most important things you can do to make your website and documents more accessible. But what about your social media posts? Rooted in Rights recently created a quick (1 minute) video explaining how to add alternative text to your images on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
Those of you who have been involved in accessibility testing of websites on campus or who have attended our Evaluating Your Website for Accessibility workshops have heard about the importance of keyboard navigation to web accessibility. Manuel Matuzovic, a front-end developer and accessibility blogger from Austria conducted an experiment to see if the web would be usable and accessible if he were unable to use a mouse. He blogged about his results in a 24a11y.com post called I Threw Away My Mouse. Spoiler alert: the answer is no, not really.
In order to make it easier for everyone to comply with Syracuse University’s new ICT Accessibility policy, ITS has negotiated discounted pricing with Automatic Sync Technologies (AST) for providing captioning and transcription services.
Syracuse University and AST have worked together for over 12 years to offer high-quality, low-cost captioning services through integration with Ensemble Video. With CaptionSync, AST services can now be incorporated into the workflow for captioning a wide variety of video formats for other platforms, such as YouTube, Vimeo, and Blackboard.
See Captioning With AST/CaptionSync (*requires login) for more information and pricing if:
• You have a video or audio file that needs captions.
• You have a video on your YouTube or Vimeo channel that needs captions.
• You have a video in Ensemble that needs captions.
• You have a video that will require audio description.
• You would like to have a YouTube or Vimeo video that you do NOT own captioned.
• You need live captioning for an event.
This three part blog post from Level Access reviews the new WCAG 2.1 Success Criteria as they apply to the user groups that they affect most, and answers some common questions about the guidelines and how they relate to WCAG 2.0. All three posts are linked from WCAG 2.1: Exploring the New Success Criteria.
The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) has published an expanded version of the WCAG guidelines for accessible web content. The new guidelines add success criteria for:
- Users of mobile devices, WCAG 2.1 provides updated guidance including support for user interactions using touch, handling more complex gestures, and for avoiding unintended activation of an interface.
- Users with low vision, WCAG 2.1 extends contrast requirements to graphics, and introduces new requirements for text and layout customization to support better visual perception of web content and controls.
- Users with cognitive, language, and learning disabilities, WCAG 2.1 improvements include a requirement to provide information about the specific purpose of input controls, as well as additional requirements to support timeouts due to inactivity. This can help many users better understand web content and how to successfully interact with it.
For more information, see the W3C WCAG 2.1 Press Release
WCAG 2.0 AA (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines) requires that audio description be provided for all prerecorded video content in synchronized media. The purpose of audio description is to provide access to the visual information in a video for people who are blind or low vision by adding a sound track that describes what is happening as it is taking place in the video.
3PlayMedia, a popular captioning vendor, is now offering audio description services. Visit the 3PlayMedia website to find more information about the features offered with this service.
Additional vendors of audio description are listed on our Video Captioning Resources page.