October 24, 2007
Youtube for Accessibility
[My apologies for the long hiatus - it has been a really busy term.]
Now here's a new concept, at least for me. Let's say you have been working to make your site as accessible as possible, for the obvious reasons -- #1) the more folks that can use the site, the more folks *will* use the site; #2) need to meet legal, government and enterprise specifications; and #3) being "good folk". You've done all kinds of CSS and behind the scenes coding to make sure that people with special needs can choose to use their own setting instead of yours.
Then you get a complaint from someone and it turns out the complaint is not because they can't use their settings, but because they DON'T KNOW HOW. Oh. So whose problem is it, whose responsibility is it, etcetera, etcetera.
If you make your site accessible for reason #2 you probably really don't care as long as you've met the job requirements, but if you do accessibility for either reasons #1 or #3, then you really do want people to be able to get at what they want from your site, and you are willing to help them a bit to make sure that happens.
Someone over at Accessify (a truly wonderful blog about tech and web accessibility) came up with a clever idea -- don't just make the site accessible, but include training for the core skills, such as how to make font size (text) bigger or smaller.
Accessify: Teach a Man to Fish, or, How to Resize Text: http://accessify.com/news/2007/09/teach-a-man-to-fish-or-how-to-resize-text/
One of the truly innovative parts of this post is the suggestion that you can not only include training, not only create a how-to screen capture video (and put it in YouTube for maximum access), but you can embed this in your accessibility statement for the site. Now, there's a thought to consider. What is your most common access question for your site?