Accessibility top 5 misconceptions and their correction

Praese_Barrierefreiheit_5Irrtuemer

Does not concern me

Limitations that affect the use of interactive systems start small, by which we mean supposedly “minor” limitations. Approximately 10% of all men suffer from color vision deficiencies. Approximately 35% of Germans are permanently dependent on visual aids. These are just two examples that influence the use of digital solutions and should therefore be taken into account in design and development.

Do not need

Especially with commercially oriented digital solutions, it is important to reach as many potential customers as possible. The logical reverse conclusion is not to exclude any target groups that might otherwise switch to or prefer the competition. Regardless of purely economic aspects, no one will be able to avoid accessibility in the future. Thanks to EU and national legislation, accessibility and enabling the participation of people with disabilities will become mandatory step by step in the coming years. Ignoring these can result in severe penalties and damage.

Not worth it

The question of whether something is “worthwhile” is closely related to the question of the motivation for producing or selling a company, a platform, a digital system or software in general. Leaving economic and legal aspects aside, a proactive approach to accessibility also says a lot about a company’s social responsibility. The converse of accessibility is, quite frankly, the exclusion of people with disabilities, which certainly no one would want to be consciously guilty of.

Have we already

It may sound sobering, but very few digital solutions that are supposedly designed to be accessible actually are. This is often not due to the will of the operators or to technological possibilities. Rather, the reasons are simply a lack of sensitivity and competence about the scope and scale of the whole issue. For example, many websites that were developed with supposedly accessible modular systems still fail the BITV test or an expert review.

Much too complicated / expensive

If you know the possibilities of enabling accessibility in terms of design and development and have the corresponding competencies in implementation, a pragmatic and efficient way to achieve this is often surprisingly fast and cost-effective. Accessibility, or the enabling of accessibility, is not usually a matter of having to go down completely new paths or establish new technologies. In most current systems and solutions, all possibilities are available, they just have to be used accordingly.

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