Ahh, accessibility at scale in a distributed environment.
Let me guess: your program for "dealing with" Web content creators is…
- training, training, and more training
- manual audits
- and then more training
- handing out browser plugins
- crawlers and dashboards
- begging and cajoling people to use their browser plugins, crawlers and dashboards
- getting a complaint about something that was addressed in the training
Why is this so hard?
Without a doubt some of it is because accessibility is complicated, but a lot of it is because we make it more complicated than it needs to be, by rolling out new expectations before rolling out new tools.
Let's stop blaming the users and start fixing the tools.
I'll present a few subtle tweaks and a big initiative that have helped us ease the burden on our training needs by addressing many common issues at the source:
- Challenging old assumptions in popular content management systems: yes you can take that button away! Yes you can change that default!
- Redesigning forms from optional fields ("default is X") to affirmative choices ("choose to do X") to provide just-in-time training for complex decisions.
- Why and how we built Editoria11y: a platform-agnostic, instant-feedback "accessibility spellcheck" that is helping even our untrained content creators create good heading structures, meaningful links, better text alternatives and so much more.