Global Accessibility Awareness Day 2016

This year, Global Accessibility Awareness Day is in its fifth year. Also known as GAAD, events have been held each year on the third Thursday of May to celebrate inclusion and to raise awareness of accessibility issues around the world.

Last year’s GAAD

For GAAD 2015, we launched a video of accessibility tips in collaboration with Fix the Web and the Digital Accessibility Centre, which has now had nearly 12,000 views.

“We loved the video and promptly contacted Dig Inclusion to see how they could help us. They’ve been great to work with and we’re making a range of improvements to our digital offerings to fans and clubs as a result.”

Cathy Long, Head of Supporter Services, Premier League

GCSE papers for everyone

As well as our work with Premier League, we’ve continued working with Pearson Edexcel on making GCSE PDF exam papers accessible to every learner. Dig Inclusion’s Ted Page has spoken at events in the UK and Copenhagen, as well as continuing with blog posts about PDF accessibility.

PDF accessibility is really gaining traction across all sectors. The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines apply to all web content, not just websites, so this is a fantastic change. PDF documents can be just as accessible as a website for anyone using assistive technology if designed the right way. A great example of an accessible PDF document is available from Citizens Online here: Digital Accessibility, a brief landscape.

What’s happening for this year’s GAAD?

Today, Fix the Web has posted a press release about the successes of last year’s animation and how it has inspired action.

The Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) has released a series of short videos that illustrate the need for accessibility using everyday examples, called Web Accessibility Perspectives. For example, this video about voice recognition gets across one very important message about accessibility: “Essential for some. Useful for all”…

#ID24

Dig Inclusion’s Jon Gibbins is taking part in Inclusive Design #ID24 later today, a live webinar across the full 24 hours of Global Accessibility Awareness Day. Jon’s talk, “Accessible UX: Going beyond WCAG”, starts at 7pm (BST). Jon will summarise how the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines relates to UX design, then go beyond the guidelines to where the standards are not enough. How do your content decisions affect people who are deaf, dyslexic, blind…? Come along and find out.

Update: #ID24 slides and video available online

The slides from Jon’s #ID24 talk are now available on SlideShare:

Accessible UX: Going beyond WCAG (#ID24)

And a video of yesterday’s live stream can be found on YouTube:

Long-standing advocates of digital accessibility

Finally, we want to give a shout out to a client of ours who has been focussing on accessibility for a long time. The Web Accessibility Initiative even have an accessibility case study from their work in 2006, now nearly ten years ago: Legal & General case study on Web Accessibility.

Dig Inclusion’s Grant Broome was behind that initial push to help Legal & General make their content accessible, and more recently has helped them produce company accessibility guidelines. These guidelines help both internal and external developers ensure that their content is WCAG compliant and consistent in accessibility across all products.

And so, enjoy GAAD 2016! We’re already looking forward to next year!

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