Digital accessibility refers to how usable a website, app, or other digital experience is by all possible users, regardless of their economic status, ability, or disability. Your digital accessibility means ensuring all of your online properties are available to everyone and also optimized for people with disabilities and/or impairments. It has never been more important. The Scholarly Kitchen brought this interesting information to our attention in their article, “Guest Post — Advancing Accessibility in Scholarly Publishing: Recommendations for Digital Accessibility Best Practices.”
Countless organizations still create content that is incompatible for so many of their target audiences, because of outdated design practices or a lack of awareness on the importance of digital best practices. Many are aware of the need to create more accessible content but continue to fall behind. Often-encountered barriers are not knowing where to start or hesitation at the time and money required to make their work more accessible to everyone.
The topic of digital accessibility has often been misunderstood as a niche topic, but it is now a principle. If our organizations remain obscured behind the digital divide and do not make accessibility a business priority, they will effectively make themselves responsible for allowing inequality to persist. It’s no different for academic publishing. Scholarly publishing is about quality and impact — quality of content and impact of research.
Metadata makes digital content findable. Findability, however, works only when a proper taxonomy is in place. Proper indexing against a strong standards-based taxonomy increases the findability of data. Access Innovations is one of a very small number of companies able to help its clients generate ANSI/ISO/W3C-compliant taxonomies.
Melody K. Smith
Sponsored by Access Innovations, changing search to found.