Guide Dogs, TrendMedia, Accessibility in News

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Guide Dogs for the Blind logoTrendMedia recently completed work on a new, accessible web site for Guide Dogs for the Blind in San Rafael, California. Today, Guide Dogs released a press release on PR Web which in turn appeared on Google News — Guide Dogs for the Blind Launches State-of-the-Art Website: a Model for Accessibility. You can read the complete release on PR Web.

My favorite quote is about creating sites that are “technically” accessible (i.e. – pass W3C WCAG checkpoints and Section 508 standards) verses sites that are actually usable and easy to navigate for the blind and visually impaired, especially users who rely on screen reader software such as JAWS, Window-Eyes, or Apple VoiceOver.

“Most websites designed to get NFB certification pay little or no attention to usability,” said McNitt. “Accessibility and usability are two different things. Put it this way: you can technically make a building accessible by putting in a water fountain that’s the right height and restrooms that are wide enough for someone using a wheelchair. But if you put those things on the 10th floor, the building isn’t really usable.”

Of course, it’s good to know that we have a happy client as well… šŸ˜‰

“The team that built this site went out of their way to ensure that the end product was superior to our expectations, and we’re thrilled with the results.” (Bob Phillips, Guide Dogs, CEO) And, according to the site’s immediate increase of traffic, so is everyone else.

[tags]accessability,blind,guide dogs,trendmedia,mcnitt,web standards,web development,jaws,window-eyes,voiceover[/tags]