The high cost of digital discrimination: why companies should care about web accessibility | The Guardian

A 2011 survey by the Pew Research Center found that 2%, or 4.7 million American adults, said they suffered from a disability or illness that made it difficult or impossible for them to use the internet.

For a growing number of companies, that inaccessibility comes at a cost. The US Department of Justice (DOJ), citing the Americans with Disabilities Act, has sued and negotiated millions of dollars in settlements with big brands such as Target, Disney and Netflix, for not designing their websites to accommodate the browsing needs of disabled customers.

Yet last month, the DOJ once again delayed a plan to issue regulations spelling out the criteria necessary for websites to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. It had previously planned to issue the rules in June of this year, but it then postponed the date to April 2016. It now expects to release the regulations in 2018.

Websites designed to be disability friendly typically include features such as accurate auto-translation, better speech recognition, enhanced search engine optimization and browser zoom. Many of these features also improve the internet experience for other users. Text transcripts and video captioning are a must for the deaf, but are also widely used by the hearing: 80% of TV viewers use closed captioning for reasons other than hearing loss, according to a recent UK study.

Curated by (Lifekludger)
Read full article at Source: The high cost of digital discrimination: why companies should care about web accessibility | Guardian Sustainable Business | The Guardian

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