Online information which is not accessible to all is a disadvantage to both the people who cannot access it and the people or organisations who provide it.
Whether it be buying items, selling your products or services, communicating with people, accessing entertainment, booking tickets, finding jobs, managing benefits or indeed most activities we could do on any given day we are going to need access to the online environment to do it. If there are any barriers to us accessing the online world such as an inability to read or understand the text on a webpage or see the colours properly in a graphic or navigate through a websites menu systems then we are going to be at a severe disadvantage compared to people who can fully perceive, navigate through and understand the content they are accessing.
These disadvantages may lead us to:
- Not being able to access important information
- Not being able to access products or services we need
- Not being able to communicate as effectively and quickly as people who communicate via digital channels
- Not being able to access the vast amount of knowledge and entertainment in the online world
as well as many other disadvantages.
Any organisation providing information which is not accessible may be in breach of laws or regulations requiring them to provide accessible information and any organisation who provides products or services may not sell as many of them as they would hope if a percentage of their potential clients cannot access their products or services.
With this in mind it is important that all digital information be presented in a way which is accessible to everyone and also important for information providers to understand the issues faced by people with disabilities when accessing their content.