Accessibility myths in 2010
Five and a half years ago I posted an article about Accessibility myths and misconceptions where I tried to explain why some commonly held beliefs about web accessibility are incorrect. Early this year, Ian Pouncey posted a few other Web accessibility myths.
Here is a quick roundup of the myths from these two articles.
- Accessibility is just for blind people
- Accessible websites are ugly and boring
- Accessibility is expensive and difficult
- Offering a text-only version is good enough
- Customisation and read-aloud functionality make a site accessible
From Web accessibility myths:
- Validation equals accessibility
- If it works with a screen reader it is accessible
- Sites are either accessible or inaccessible
- Content that isn’t 100% accessible shouldn’t be published
There are even more web accessibility myths than those. Here are a couple:
And since accessibility is not just about screen readers, you also have to consider keyboard accessibility in your scripting.
Adding title attributes to all links improves accessibility
You can use the
title attribute to add “advisory information” to almost any HTML element. It sounds like a good idea at first, but there are a couple of rather serious drawbacks.
titleattributes are mostly ignored by screen readers on most elements (other than form controls, where screen readers do tend to announce them) unless the user has changed their configuration
- The content of
titleattributes is generally displayed as a tooltip in graphical browsers, but only after the mouse cursor has hovered over the element for a second or two. It is not displayed to keyboard users.
In other words, any information you put in
title attributes is only certain to be conveyed to sighted, mouse-using people who let the cursor hover over the element that has a
title attribute for a couple of seconds. Do not rely on it being conveyed to other users.
See Don’t duplicate link text in the title attribute and Don’t use the title attribute for essential information for more reading about the