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Are there tools to see what conformance gaps you currently have on your website?

There are free automated tools available to test website compliance. The problem is a lot of these free tools fall short of providing an actual understanding of the site’s accessibility. Many of the tools are not able to recognize advanced techniques that are now utilized. These tools can be a good start, but the business or organization should use something more comprehensive. Automatic testing is a good start, but manual testing is essential, as well.

There are many aspects of compliance that can only be discovered through manual testing. AudioEye engages in both automated and manual testing, ensuring a comprehensive view of gaps in compliance.

What does “Conformance” mean?

As it relates to digital accessibility, “conformance” refers to the conformance of digital materials with ADA-related digital accessibility requirements. The level of conformance required is dependent on the company and industry. For example, places of public accommodation such as banks, grocery stores, amusement parks, etc., are required to make their digital content fully accessible, using WCAG 2.0 Level AA as the standard.

What does “Digital Accessibility Compliance” mean?

In general, “compliance,” as it relates to digital accessibility, refers to compliance with regulations and laws. As it relates to legal demand letters relating to digital accessibility, “compliance” refers to the actions a company is taking to address or comply with the demands.

While AudioEye always recommends seeking legal counsel in the event a demand letter is received regarding digital accessibility, in general, once you begin the process of addressing – or complying with – the demands outlined, and you detail these actions in your response through legal counsel, you are working toward compliance and therefore, generally eliminating your risk as it pertains to the legal demand letter. That is, of course, assuming you complete the process of making your website accessible.

What is Digital Accessibility?

Digital accessibility is to the digital world what ramps and rails are to the physical world. Digital accessibility allows individuals that rely on the use of Assistive Technology, or AT, such as screen readers, to access and consume digital content.

What is Universal Design?

Universal Design is the design and composition of an environment so that that it can be accessed, understood and used to the greatest extent possible by all people regardless of their age, size, ability or disability.

For example: the cut in a curb – this allows wheelchairs to access sidewalks from parking spaces, but it also allows strollers to be easily pushed on to the sidewalk, or shopping carts to be pushed off a sidewalk. A curb cut also allows someone with a walker or cane to more easily access a sidewalk.

Learn more about Universal Design

Common misconceptions about accessibility

People who are blind don’t use the Internet.

False. The only difference between people who are sighted and those who are blind is their vision. People who are blind participate in the world in every way like everyone else – they simply require accommodations for equal access. Braille, audio cues and other modifications allow people who are blind to participate equally. The Internet is no different; they use screen readers, keyboards and other assistive technology to access information. Unfortunately, if not coded for accessibility, these screen readers don’t work. It is this type of exclusion that can lead to legal action.

People with disabilities comprise a very small portion of the population.

False. According to the World Health Organization, between 15% – 20% of the world’s population are disabled. It is critical that we widen our view of what “disability” means. The range of disabilities are more than blind, deaf or immobile – people with color blindness, low vision, dyslexia, those who suffer from seizures and a range of cognitive disabilities impact the ability of individuals to consume digital content.

To achieve digital accessibility, you need to redesign your website.

False! AudioEye is solving technology issues with technology, remediating issues of accessibility on existing websites without altering the form or function of a site and helping companies mitigate risk. From Day 1 the AudioEye technology identifies and fixes the most common issues of accessibility –all behind the scenes. AudioEye goes beyond accessibility to enhance usability for all site visitors, but especially aging populations with low vision, the nearly 1 in 10 people with dyslexia, and anyone who better understands information by listening rather than reading – the Ally Toolbar which is part of the AudioEye Ally Managed Services – addresses these and a range of needs.

What is accessibility?

“Accessibility” as it relates to the Americans With Disabilities Act, is about providing equal access to individuals with disabilities. Usually, we tend to think of accessibility in terms of ramps and rails; many think of the physical world and the accommodations required for people experiencing barriers to access due to vision, hearing or mobility disabilities.

AudioEye focuses on digital accessibility and providing the “ramps and rails” needed for access to the digital world. The ADA Tile III prohibits “… discrimination on the basis of disability in the activities of places of public accommodations …” Today, that includes the Internet; which means “accessibility” poses a much bigger issue, and like the Internet itself, impacts a much bigger population. In fact, the World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that more than 15% of the world’s population has a disability that may prevent them from equal access to digital content.

What is a disability?

The following excerpt is taken directly from the ADA National Network: Information, guidance, and training on the Americans with Disabilities Act

It is important to remember that in the context of the ADA, “disability” is a legal term rather than a medical one. Because it has a legal definition, the ADA’s definition of disability is different from how disability is defined under some other laws.

The ADA defines a person with a disability as a person who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activity. This includes people who have a record of such an impairment, even if they do not currently have a disability. It also includes individuals who do not have a disability but are regarded as having a disability. The ADA also makes it unlawful to discriminate against a person based on that person’s association with a person with a disability.

It is important to note that the World Health Organization, in 2016, has estimated between 15% – 20% of the world’s population has some level of disability. That equates to between 1 billion and 1.4 billion people worldwide.