Panel Discussion

The panel: Mike Davies, Kath Moonan, Bim Egan, Jonathan Hassell, Antonia Hyde, Dr. Panayiotis Zaphiris. Julie Howell moderating.

(laptop batteries are dying so this may not get the whole session.)

JH: PAS78 is going to become a full British Standard.

Better Connected report – accessibility is getting worse, not better?
Bim: No, it’s getting better but we compare sites with their peers and the standards are much higher now. Example: everyone has headings now. Five years ago this wasn’t true. Web probably 200% more accessible now compared with five years ago.
Talks about the problem of Too Much Accessibility – well-intentioned developers adding accessibility features which may hurt usability.

Why are Yahoo! here?
Mike: Y! understand that accessibility is part of their mainstream business. Built a very talented web team. That talent brings accessibility with it as a matter of course. Needs one person with power to see the need and push for it within an organisation. Same story at Legal & General.

Overcoming fear of contributing/fear of making mistakes?
Jonathan: Not sure. Give people the means to express themselves. Give them a voice, which may be text but may also be video. Give them a medium that they are comfortable expressing themselves in. Anonymity of the web is a problem – encourages trolling, which discourages people who have something to say. Barrier to contributing is the audience themselves. Youtube users can be awful. Web hides your disability, but sense of identity is important to people. BSL community a good example here.

And the laptop is onto reserve power. That’s all for today folks…