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Publishers on Image Accessibility

2013 April 30
by Amaya Webster

submitted by Larry Goldberg

One of NCAM’s activities during Year 3 of the DIAGRAM Center project has been to conduct interviews with targeted publishers to discover current practices and challenges surrounding image accessibility in order to provide guidance for ongoing DIAGRAM activities. These interviews delved into existing and planned digital publishing processes and are intended to help us better understand the changes necessary for adequately supporting accessible images and graphic content. A full report on the interviews will be available in the next few weeks, but for now, we can report that:

  • Publishers and accessible media producers are dedicated to enhancing the accessibility of their images
  • Widely accepted standards help them make the case internally (and a big shout-out to ePub3 but they wish more platforms would adopt it). MathML is gaining significant traction too. HTML5 for media next up.
  • Better tools for creating the necessary metadata would be very much appreciated; Poet has shown what’s possible but they would like something their authors could use, that can be integrated into their existing tools and processes and that can be readily transportable across platforms
  • All interview subjects would like access to “just-in-time” subject matter experts so that image accessibility can be handled immediately during the production process, with access to accessibility expertise as well.

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