Um, hello for everybody participating. My name is joel maxson associate general counsel of florida, realtors um, i’m sure most of you have seen me around but uh, but for those who haven’t my main job for realtors is to manage the legal hotline. So i wanted to introduce today’s program, which is going to focus on the technical side of website compliance by just giving just the briefest of legal overviews, because the the technical side and the legal side kind of intertwine, um and part of the question i always am Asked is how do we get here um for those of you, who’ve looked into the americans with disabilities act. I think everybody understands that for decades the ada has applied to physical buildings and if you want to open an office or something that’s a to the public, it’s just going to be a cost of doing business. To make sure that your physical structure is compliant with the ada um, it’s you know it’s, it’s no longer a baby law, it’s an entrenched law and everybody kind of understands it.
It’S sort of in the background, but some clever attorneys a couple of years ago got the idea to apply the principles of americans with disabilities act to websites um, and these these lawyers and their firms have targeted. For you know about five years, we’ve been looking at this closely and paying attention they’ve, targeted, big companies and they’ve brought big cases. Now, almost all of these national or international companies settle and say. Yes, we will make our take steps to make our websites compliant for people with uh, with uh vision, vision and hearing disabilities, but a few have fought and the couple of cases that have come out so far and they are just uh. Just a couple have been the victories on the side of the disability; in other words, the companies have been forced to make some sort of change to make their websites compliant.
So as we watch this trend develop so far on the legal hotline, we haven’t heard much from our members. You know not really much of a peep at all, so it’s been more of an academic uh reminder hey. This could be an issue. This could be an issue now. A recent trend that many of you have probably seen and heard about is that a a law firm out of miami um they also have a tie in washington dc, has basically blanketed the state with demand letters saying your websites are not compliant um and you need To bring to make them accessible – and it’s this this by the way this this recent law firm, that has blanketed this state doesn’t look a lot like the other ones, but that’s kind of a side point.
If you want to know more about how they’re, acting and behaving and what they’re looking for and what so far seems to be fairly small demands for settlement and no lawsuits filed. Yet we’re happy to talk about it on the legal hotline, but don’t get too distracted by this particular firm and their claims which, by the way, are coming under fair housing act instead of the ada. I don’t know that that matters, because the point they’re raising excessively a website is one that we have said and will continue to say, is an issue that is a business decision. You should get in front of and have a plan. So that’s why today, i’m very excited and happy to say: we’ve got uh pro-mit source and and from conversations leading up to this meeting, i found them to be very practical and logical and organized so i’m excited to hear what they have to say on the technical Side of now you, when you do get in front of it.
What will that look like, so i’m going to send it over to ashley burns and she’s going to kick off the conversation from the tech side and i’m going to blank out and start taking notes for our hotline attorneys thanks. So much joel and my name’s ashley burns, i’m an account manager here at promet source and just a couple of housekeeping items to address very quickly. This webinar is being recorded. The copy of the webinar will be sent out to everyone uh following the presentation. We’Ll also share with you a link to the presentation itself, there’s a lot of good resources in here, and so we will be sharing that with you guys and we do encourage all of you to um.
Take your questions and put them into the chat box. There’S a q, a chat box in the bottom of your screen so feel free to ask any of your questions that you have throughout the presentation and we do promise to hold uh to hold time for questions at the end. So we definitely will we’ll get to those – and i know denise has a lot of great stuff to cover today. So i’ll. Let her take it away from here.
Hello, everybody hi. My name is denise. Just a little bit about myself, i’m a web accessibility specialist with promet since about april 2019. I am certified professional in accessibility, core competencies, um. I have a certificate from northwestern and full stack development.
I also have a bs and technical management and a ba in political science. I have like education, um, there’s my email for you and my linkedin. If you ever need to get in contact with me. So what are we going to discuss today? Well, we’ve got to figure out what is this web accessibility thing?
Why should we make our websites accessible how people with disabilities use the web and then we’ll go over some common accessibility errors? We’Ll discuss a little bit of the topic of accessibility, overlays, some accessibility tools, the promet process and then we’ll save some time for questions and answers. So what is one? Second, i’m sorry. What is accessibility?
Web accessibility means that websites, tools and technologies are designed and developed. So that people with disabilities can use them we’ll discuss this later on, but it brings in the concepts of the acronym of poor and then the woodcag guidelines for accessibility um. These guidelines encompass everyone with disabilities that are like auditory, cognitive, neurological, physical speech, visual. It also is people with temporary disabilities. You break your hands, you can’t use your mouse.
You always use keyboard. Um people on mobile devices, more people are using sole mobile devices now and not their computers, and then temporary disabilities such as the sun, shines on your screen. You know we all have to have that experience where you can’t see your phone, so some accessibility tools and guidelines will help with instances like that. So why should we make these websites accessible? Why do we care well, according to figures, released by the census bureau?
In 2012, 5.6 – i’m sorry, 56.7 million americans have some type of disability. This can include 19.9 million, they have difficulty lifting or grasping 15.
million, with cognitive, mental or emotional impairment. 8. 1 million with vision, impairments and 7.6 million with hearing and impairment, so that is a lot of users and this doesn’t encompass those temporary disabilities that i just mentioned. Also, we have the number of web accessibility lawsuits filed in federal court rose to at least 2258, and that was in 2018, that’s up from 8 14 uh in 2017, representing 177 increase, and this number continues to rise.
Obviously this is a dated stat. I would guess that this is much larger at this point, so now i’m going to go a little bit just breeze through some of the accessibility laws, i’m not a lawyer, so this is just a general overview. Section 504 rehabilitation act of 1973 is legislation that established rights for individuals with disabilities. It requires agencies that receive federal funds to provide individuals with disabilities and equal opportunity to participate in programs and benefits. This applies to all fellow agencies and those doing business with or receiving funding from federal agencies.
Now we have the section 508 of the rehabilitation act, um u.s congress amended. The rehabilitation act in 1998 applies to agencies receiving federal funds when they develop procure maintain or use information technology. It was enacted to eliminate technological barriers, make available new opportunities and encourage the development of new technologies, and then we have the big law. The american with disabilities act, it became effective on january 26, 92 says it’s wrong to discriminate against people with, because of their disability, addresses employment and workplace discrimination, state and local governments, parks facilities, programs and businesses and non-profits there’s three parts that define it.
You have to have a condition that that’s a substantial effect on one or more major life areas like communication and protects those who had a disability and those regarded as having a disability um. It’S specific to florida. Florida’S population jumps 31.4 from 2000 to 2020 likely incident of disability at 15, so the amount of disability in the state of florida is increasing. The ada is then broken down into titles.
Title one addresses workplace discrimination. You know reasonable accommodations. I can’t you know, stand for a long time need to provide me a chair stuff like that um titles, two three and five applies to state and local governments. Programs, policies and facilities requires reasonable modification to enable use of services and sites, and then title four is ttd, which is the um telephone system for the deaf um. We then have a lawsuit that is specific to florida.
Lawyers awarded 100k um to for in the win. Dixie case so well bear with me um. It’S basically stated that they shall adopt and implement a web accessibility policy and ensures that its website conforms with wicked 2.0. We will go over wiki and specific laws that govern how your website appears um, and then they should make a publicly available and direct link for the on their website for a statement of accessibility so stating what are they doing to make their website accessible?
Then another aspect of accessibility is what’s called seo. It’S search engine optimization. How easily can somebody, through just like google, find your website having an accessible website increases search engine, optimization, um, accessible designs, enhance the user experience it’s better for sighted and unsighted users. Um titles help screen readers and searches. A lot of this is very tech.
Heavy, but, like good heading structure, establishes a content hierarchy um having captions. If you have videos on your sites having captions on your um, video allows them to be indexed, so they can be searched versus thing with things such as google. So how do people with these disabilities? What do they do? How do they search the internet or use the internet?
Um people who are blind or have very low vision will use a screen. Reader there’s also something called a braille board which is what’s pictured. Basically, what it does is, it reads the website and transcribes it into braille um. You also have closed captioning. So for someone who can’t hear that they can read a video, then there is also for someone who has mortar issues, voice control.
You can control your um computer using your voice. This is built in now on most um computers, along with screen readers um, then there’s keyboard control. I have some sort of issue where i can’t use a mouse, so i can only. I can only use my keyboard to control the screen and then you have high contrast mode. What that will basically do is turn the screen black and white.
It’S extremely helpful for individuals with color blindness or also um cognitive disabilities. If they find the color distracting, black and white can be another option for them. So what we’re going to do here is this is a recording of a screen reader that and the site isn’t necessarily a good site. So we’re going to hear kind of what is the experience that a screen reader user gets when a website is not accessible, skip to content link and four more items. Group link visited link, image, carmel clay parks and recreation.
Banner chrome has new window search button collapse. Button navigation link, login weather enclosures button link. Three hundred seventeen point, eight hundred forty eight point: seven thousand two hundred seventy five intr account. Seven one banner link explore list three items: link, engage, link, connect, search, search text, field, search, search, search, submit button next button, complimentary link, 317-84370 button main link, learn more next button link gain access to all features of the load on community center, become link join an Award-Winning organization join our team link, video playlist here about our ongoing commitment to our community. Your current link, o2 19 slash 20202.
14 2018. Article link read more one of three selected tab. One of three main link: health plus wellness. Article chrome has new window link recreation link o2, slash 20 20 link, read more one of three selected tab. One of three main previous button link parks, experiences list.
Three items: link parks, features, link, ran to shelter, link about the modern community center link amenities link become the member link. Hours of operation link rates, link about a water park, lit link amenities, link, purchase a day, pass link hours of operation link rates. Next button main visited link, image, carmel clay parks and recreation. Twitter chrome has new window link info car mailplateparks Com link sign up so, as you can see, some things are good. You could tell like it would say, link and it’ll give you the information.
What is that link doing, but then other things such as like a phone number, three one, seven, eight, four! Three! Three thousand eight, seventy, i i don’t know about you, but that’s not how i normally would read a telephone number, so you can see some of the information it wasn’t fully given to the user. The screen reader user should have the same experience as the um as a sighted user, so another aspect of this is pdfs. I don’t know if, as realtors have used a lot of pdfs on your sites, but pdfs also need to be accessible um, they will follow the same wikked guidelines that we’re going to discuss um and they need to meet levels a and double a which we’ll get Into at a later point, but it is something to keep in mind that that is also another issue that we in accessibility have to look at.
So now we’re going to discuss the acronym of poor and then the wic had guidelines. Uh poor is an acronym for four principles that describe functional accessibility. Many of the challenges faced by people with disabilities can be described by using one of these four principles. We also use these principles to help break down down the wick cad guidelines which we’ll discuss next. So the first we have is p, which is for perceivable.
Can the user identify content and interface elements by using their senses? For many, this means is the element visually perceivable for others. It’S a matter of sound some examples. You have an online application form with input fields. If the field labels are not readable, does the user still have the ability to complete the form?
Well, i know what to put in what box um. If you have a chart, if the user cannot see the chart, they understand the information it contains. Do you have information in your system that they can access it in a different way? Um, and then you have a website that contains information that does not meet contrast. Guidelines can the low vision user still view this information?
Next, we have o, which is operable. Can the user successfully use controls buttons, navigation and other interactive elements for many, this means being able to find and identify the interface control visually and then being able to interact with that control for others this may be using a keyboard or a voice control device to Access that same element, some examples, is a navigation menu that reveals a sub menu where it drops down when the user uses a mouse to hover on it. If the menu does not expand when it receives focus, meaning when you click on or interact with that element in subway, can the user still access that same information also for links on a website can be activated with a mouse click? If that click does not receive keyboard focus, can a keyboard user still access them? U is for understandable.
Is the technology consistent in its present and presentation and format? Is it appropriate for the audience? So some examples is the reading level appropriate. So you would expect like a um a website for children but have a much lower reading level than say you know a medical journal, so you need to structure the content for your audience being realtors. Obviously, you deal with a wide range of people, so you’re going to want to go for the common, a common reading level um.
If the website contains non-english sections so say you have spanish on your website, you, the code needs to define that that is spanish. So when the screen reader gets to it, it doesn’t try to use english pronunciation rules to pronounce spanish um. Is the navigation consistent from page to page so meaning, if you have five pages on your website, is it all structured, essentially the same way? Does the user have to re-learn how to use your website with every single page, or did they figure out the first time and then they know what to do from then on last would be robust. This is a little bit more of a technology issue.
Um. Does the website meet technology standards as it’s designed to function on all appropriate technologies, meaning will your website work on all web browsers and then also, if you have videos on your website, does, does the user have the appropriate plugin to make it you work and if Not can they still obtain that same information, so those those concepts of poor are then used for the for wic cad guidelines. Um whitcag is web content, accessibility guidelines and it was developed by the w3c, which is the world wide web consortium, which is an international community where members organizations, a full-time staff and the public work together to develop web standards in cooperation with individuals and organizations around the World the goal of is the goal of providing a single shared standard for web content, accessibility that meets the needs of individuals, organizations and governments internationally. So what we’re going to do? This gets a little complicated in the rules, so i’m not going to spend time going over each individual rule just kind of give you an overview of it.
How this works is they’re broken up into those poor principles that we discussed earlier and then there’s level a level double a and level triple a level. A is kind of like i’m, a c student, i’m getting just the bare minimum done level. A is oh, we’re doing good, we got to be, let’s you know, we’re doing well and then triple a is you’re amazing, your site’s fantastic. In general, we try to aim for double a um aaa gets hard to do for everything, but the general kind of goal is at least double a. So what are some of these rules?
So this first one we have perceivable perceivable guidelines. Um one would be like for 1.1 non-text content. Do all the is there alt text on all your images and we’ll discuss what alt text is for 1.2 video content which will be non-live um?
Is there a text transcript of all video content? So if the person can’t hear can they read about it instead, um 1.3 is adaptable, tables are set up correctly. Um. That’S within code is an intuitive reading order.
So if somebody’s using a keyboard, is it in the right order? They’Re not like jumping around the screen or just even visually. Is it in the right order? Uh 1.4 is distinguished distinguishable text and images are decorative.
If there’s tech, if you have an image and there’s text in it, is it decorative only you don’t want to be using an image to give content for information um. Then we have the operable guideline so 2. 1 would be keyboard access. Could i get to everything on the page using just my keyboard? I don’t touch my mouse, i’m just tabbing through.
Can i get to everything um and then also you have 2.3 is for seizures. So if you have uh animations on your website, they need to not flash more than three times per second and then we also have understandable guidelines. Um. Is it predictable do and like if they click on something?
Is there a change? That’S expected, so you don’t want to be clicking on something and like the colors change on the site. That would not be an expected change and then the last one is those robust guidelines. Again. This gets, like i mentioned before, a little bit more technical um.
It’S such things as like is the code written properly. Does it run on all operating systems? Just like we end a sentence with a period code needs to be ended, a certain way, so are all those things done that sort of thing? Okay. So what we’re going to do now now that we kind of know a little bit about how um we decide if a site is accessible or not, and we’re going to go into some examples of some specific issues.
So, first we’re going to talk about color contrast. Contrast is a measure of the difference in perceived luminance or brightness between two colors, so the brightness difference is expressed as a ratio. 1.1 would be. White text on a white background and 21 to 1 would be black text on a white background.
Woodcag requires that visual presentation of text and images have a contrast: ratio of 4.5 to 1 There are some exceptions for large texts. If it’s incidental, it’s an incidental or a logo type um there are, is also different guidelines for um input fields and that sort of thing. So how does what’s color blindness look like, so our top line is normal vision. You can see the full spectrum of the rainbow.
The next would be red green weak. So, as you can see like the powder blue becomes purple, the greens come a little murky. You can’t really see the red at all. Um, blue, yellow. You got a little bit more blues and pinks, but i don’t really see any greens anymore and then monochromancy, which is no color whatsoever.
So what effect does this have like they’re still seeing some color? Why would they be able to read my font anymore? Well, we have an example. This is an actual email that i received where we have a lovely yellow background and a gray font um. I am not color blind and i have difficult reading this, so this is a poor example of design in general um.
But what how we get? Those ratios that we discussed we use this tool will be given to you guys at the end um. We use a tool where we input the colors, so we have a foreground color of gray. Your foreground would be like your text or anything like that and then a background color of this mustardy yellow. So our tool says that we have a ratio of 1 24 to 1, which is a fail um.
It then will tell us that it’s a fail for doubling it’s a fail for aaa, it’s a fail for large text and it’s a fail for graphical objects, which is text input. The next issue would be like alt text, so an alt tag is alternative text. It’S a it’s html code used to describe the appearance and function of an image on a page. You want to add alt text on all images unless they’re deemed decorative being. If you have an image on your page, what information are you trying to give the user from that image?
That’S what your alt tag should be so we’re adding alt text on photos is first and foremost principal web accessibility. Visual impaired users using screen readers will be read. The alt attribute to better understand an on-page image. Alt tags will be displayed in place of an image if the image file cannot load, so you can still get that information to the user. Even if the page does alone, all tags provide better image, context, description to search engine crawlers, helping them index an image properly and which thus increases your search engine search engine, optimization, okay.
So this is an example of alt tab. So we have an alt tag of jacobs park. Sign so think. What do you think jacob’s park sign is going to look like well. This is the picture we have now based on that alt tag.
You would think it was just this sign this. Just the jacobs park sign not the whole playground in the background um. So this is the code for it, so the title of the image itself was jacob’s park sign, so the alt tab was just pulled from that title or really. It should be something more like jacob’s part playground. You know just a little bit more information, so the user knows it’s the playground that we’re looking at and not really the sign.
The main thing to keep in mind with these alt texts is think about what information are you trying to give your user by that image? That is most likely. What your alt tag should be. Here’S another example from amazon. It’S a little bit more explicit example.
We have a bag of doritos, so the alt tag is dorito: tortilla chips, nacho cheese, 1.75 ounce, large single, serving pack of 64 So, as you can see, you can fit quite a mount in alt tags. So don’t feel like you need to make your alt tag. Dorito, tortilla chips. That’S really not all the information!
You want all the information in there that that image is giving or that you want your user to know next, we’re going to discuss label forms. So i’m sorry yeah forms the labels on the forms. So if you’ve got a form like this email, the part district and message, you would think, based on this information that you have and the labels that that’s the information you need to give you need, is you’re going to email the product district or give a message. You’Re going to hit, submit and that’s it well now we find out that there really is more labels right. You have name, first name last name, email phone number, um and you have some indication of what is required.
Well, if these things aren’t set up properly, the screen reader user first of all would not know what is required, but then you submit the form and you get an error. Well, the error says errors have been highlighted below. If i am non-visual, how am i going to know what is highlighted if i am color blind? I might not know what is highlighted. Additionally, you have the error itself.
Is this field is required? Please enter a value. What is this field? The errors should properly give you a list at the top of all the errors. So a screen reader user or a color blind user can read what the errors are and then the error below each field would be the name first name and last name field are required.
Please enter a value or, if you have an email say i just entered d erasmus and i didn’t put like at you know, yahoo or whatever it should give you that information. What format does the input need to be, rather than just blanket? Please enter a value. Those are some of the common errors that we see next we’re going to discuss, accessibility overlays. What is an accessibility overlay overlays are applications and coding that sit between your website and the assistive technology.
The goal is to allow business owners and compliance managers. The ability to make their website more accessible without having to change the underlying source code sounds great. We don’t have to change code. Wonderful will this fix all my accessibility issues? No, nearly 100 companies that were sued in the first six months of 2020 also had an overlay or an accessibility, widget enabled on their website, so these overlays are not stopping lawsuits.
So why shouldn’t we use these? What’S the problem over light overlay vendors sticks only the easy stuff leaving big accessibility gaps. They also make the the user use their assistive technology. So this is the analogy i just kind of think of every day you drive a ford focus to work. You’Re used to your small car you’ve been driving it for 20 years and then suddenly i tell you, oh i’m sorry for this bit of road.
You have to use a semi you’re only allowed to use that. Well, it would be off-putting to have to use something that you’re not used to so they’re, forcing the user to use their technology rather than the technology that they have set up to their specifications and their preferences um. These overlays also do not conform to wiki um conformance um. They are not supported by mobile web users, so more and more people, especially people with disabilities, are using their phones rather than their computer. I mean, i don’t know if you’re like me, i don’t after work.
I don’t search on my computer, i search on my phone. They also do not protect from lawsuits we’ll send this out with the materials later, but this is an article about um from a lawyer about whether or not overlays protect you for from an ada uh lawsuit. So, on the subject of lawsuits, this is a graph with some information about lawsuits during the coven 19 period. So as we can see they kind of went down in march and april, but that is also the time period when a lot of us were locked down right. A lot of courts were shut down a lot of work kind of came to a slow.
Well, we’re all kind of starting to open up again right, so the lawsuits are continuing to go up and they’re getting higher. So what can we do? Is it hopeless? I can’t fix my website what are some things that you can do to help make this situation better. First thing you know, is you can run your site through a manual tool and we will supply you with some of these free ones.
There are pay ones but um one example of a free one is lighthouse. It is important to keep in mind these only find about 20 to 30 percent of errors. If you get a hundred percent on accessibility on lighthouse, it does not mean your website is accessible, but what it’ll do it’ll give you uh gives you seo and stuff like that too and performance, but it’ll give you a list of your general errors and what, where Some of the flaws are on your site um. I also recommend a few manual things of like tabbing through your website, so go on your on your website. Put your cursor in the search bar and just hit tab on your on your um keyboard.
Can you get to everything on your site? That’S another, maybe a manual process or a manual process of testing it. This is an automatic. I apologize um to find some of those errors. So what do we do?
We found a whole bunch of errors on our site. What do we do now? You can check with your suppliers and ask for ask them to give you a compliance site. So if you paid somebody to build your site, see if you can get them to make the corrections for you and we’ll supply with the materials later on an example of some letters that you can send to your suppliers to see if we can kind of get Your site a little bit more accessible um next thing you can do is you can get educated, um? Here’S just an example of some of the uh presentations we have going on at promet to help you get um educated, but there’s certainly other places.
You can do it, but you know this is kind of what we offer, but it’s good to find out. Okay, i have these issues. What can i do about them or if you have a developer, that you work with or somebody that you work with for your site, encourage them to get educated and to see what changes they can make on the website? For you, you find out that this is all just too much for you, you, you don’t you’re, not comfortable dealing with the tech side, which is fine. You can hire a professional organization that can run both automatic and manual testing on your site.
Organizations such as these can also fix an accessibility issue. This is what we do at promet. We accessibility department, we run manual and automatic tests on websites come up with a list of errors, and then we can help people fix those issues. So you’re a little bit more advanced you, you kind of you know you have code a little bit or you’re familiar with these tools. Um.
What you can also do is use webaim and colorzilla to find some pick, some new colors for your website. So, even if you’re, using like a wix or something of that nature, you can still change your colors right. So, if you’re comfortable, these tools will also be given to you um. You can use something like webbing, which is that black box, which will tell you what color you have um, and then you can take that information and put it into colorzilla, which will give your herbs right. Reverse that you can take the color zone and put it into the webbing and it’ll give you the ratio.
You can also, then click around and change that color and see what effect that has on your ratio. So you could get more accessible colors for your site. You can also use a tool called wave um, which we will also supply for you. What wave does is it will run it’s another automatic tool um, it will run your full site and it’ll give you a list of. If you look on the left, it gives you errors, contrast errors, some alerts and then some other structural elements that get a little code heavy.
When you go into it, you can click an error find out. What is the problem so like an image is alternative text? Is not present um and then it will tell you how to fix it, and you can also get to the actual code level to fix it. This is where it’s good to point out. Part of the reason why we can’t do just automatic testing like this is that the it won’t find everything so like this error.
Specifically, it says image: alternative text is not present. Okay well say you did have one. You had a picture of a beautiful house right and but the alt text was car. Well, this wave system or lighthouse or anything of that nature is just going to know. Oh there’s a there’s, alt text: that’s there we’re good!
Well, the alt text is not giving the same information, so this is why it’s important to do manual testing on top of your automatic testing, and then we also have some browser tools for the more advanced with code sniffer, which full is again another tool that runs All of your site, apps, which is a chrome extension, it does the same. A similar thing, accessibility insights, gives you a little bit more detail. These are all kind of more advanced and accessibility tools. Um contrast ratio checker, which we showed high contrast mode, which will is a good basic tool if you know how to put an extension in it, just converts your site to black and white. So you can see some of the problems.
Where can a colorblind user have issues? What can’t they see? Magnifying glass? If you raise up your um browser like the zoom or use a magnifying glass, some users use these magnifying glasses to raise up the font because they can’t read small print so they’ll raise it very large. Well, do i lose any information on my site when you do that?
Is there things that are hard to get to so tools like this would help you figure that out then there’s also um a mac. There’S a built-in screen reader voiceover um. You can go ahead and experiment with that. If you go on youtube, there are tutorials on how to use voiceover similar for windows, there’s something called nvda, which is their free screen reader and also you can go in places like youtube and get the resources to learn. How to use these things, and i will turn it over to ashley for a little bit about permanent.
Thank you. So much denise appreciate that so yeah as denise mentioned earlier in her presentation, we do have some tools um for your disposal, as do as are there uh many other companies that can help you address some of these issues, um the first being that we build compliant Websites as we it’s always ideal to start with the web to start building your website, ada compliant versus retrofitting, so meaning when you are building a website, you want to make sure that you’re thinking about ada and your objectives or that’s part of the forefront of the Design next we do have comprehensive audit workflows, meaning we can take the site as it is now which, if you know that it has some it is not ada compliant. We can run an audit on your site and identify all the errors um. You know that that are on your site that need to be fixed and validated to meet ada requirements, so we develop that. We can also fix those errors for you and make sure and bring it up to ada compliance, or we can just simply hand over the audit and allow you to make those changes yourself.
We then go ahead and re-certify go ahead and re-certify the site to invalidate that those changes have been made, and so these are kind of some of the packages that we put together for you guys as options, the first being sort of a diy option for you, You’Ll notice here that we start every every option, with a statement of accessibility in a grievance method, meaning you you make a statement on your home page, allowing all the users that are using your website to let them know that you’ve started the process, it’s underway, you’re, Making the changes to allow your website to be more ada compliant and you give them a method of communication while that’s happening and being worked through a way to contact you as an alternative method, uh, the second being some education. I know denise shared with you, some upcoming training classes that we have uh. The link to those training classes is also right here and when we send out the presentation to you all, we can include a promo code so that you guys can get a discount off of that august. 26. Training course.
So we’ll share more information with you at the end, the second option uh would be to have us go through and manually audit your website. We can start with your home page there um just to identify all the the compliance violations. Um and well that’s a report that we’ll hand off to you and we’ll include cold code level, remediation fixes to make sure that those errors are fixed on your website and again we’ll go ahead and certify and retest that to make sure that all those fixes have Been applied and the third option that we have um is an audit and remediation package, meaning we’ll not only go through and identify all those errors, but we’ll actually perform the fixes for you as well. So if any of these um packages are interesting to you or something that you want to inquire and get further information about, we encourage you to reach out following this presentation, and those are just an example of some of our representative accessibility, clients and now i know That you guys have um had some questions for denise that came through while we were while she was presenting. So i can go ahead and just read those for you now yeah.
Can you read them to me because i can’t get the q a box to open yeah, absolutely um? So what are your thoughts on userway? They have a free and paid version. The newest version allows a bot to scrape your website for errors and things that need to be fixed. Would you say this is an adequate platform without spending hundreds or thousands of dollars per month or quarter what it’s going to do?
I mean it’s a great start. Certainly, right anything, that’s looking at your site for you to find your errors, but, like i mentioned, this is only going to find about 20 to 30 of your errors. It’S not like my example of the alt text. It would know you have alt text on your pictures, but is it you know the rule is concise and informative? Is it concise and informative?
It’S not going to find all of your errors. It’S not going to know. Can i tab through everything in my web page um? It’S not going to know our example of the screen reader, where it read the phone number as a long series of numbers rather than like an actual phone number. It wouldn’t find that so there’s lots of things that it’s not going to find, but it’s certainly a very good place to start.
I recommend an automatic tool, just kind of give yourself. An idea of this is where i’m at another great example, is a site improve. That is a pay service, but site improve will do the same thing with scrape your website. Okay, second question: do you know of these attorneys that are suing realtors using these same types of tools to evaluate our websites prior to filing a suit? I’M just wait run it by me again.
I’M sorry do you know if these attorneys that are suing realtors using the same types of tools to evaluate our websites? That’S what they’re doing they’re using from what i understand they use like a free scraper and they find the easy things because, for i mean they’re, not finding hard code issues right, they’re, finding the easy things that, like you know, you could go on. You know, site improve, also has a free end, so you can go on the site, approve, free and find you know, 15 errors on somebody’s website, and that is how they’re getting the errors from what i understand – they’re, not hiring. You know someone like me to go through your website right. The next question: do we have a site who can check the accessibility where we can count on their results like if anything automatic is only going to get you a certain amount of thing?
If you really want a full, you know we’re going to try to catch everything. You’D have to hire a company like promed or someone similar that does a mixture of automatic and manual um accessibility. You do have um certain sites will say that they’re accessible so and we’ll we can prescribe some sense of information on how to question these people as to whether or not it really is accessible. There’S, certainly, people out there that are selling sites. That say it’s 100 accessible and it’s not so it’s good to know.
What are the questions you need to ask to. You know ensure that they’re giving you something that’s what you’re paying for right does this tool that know how to read your site can be a one solution to support aca like this all these tools, i think the point i’m kind of driving home is all these Tools are a great starter point, so all these things that read your site, that you know lighthouse site improve anything of that nature, wave that it’s just a starting point. It’S not giving you all your errors, it’s not fixing everything! It’S just finding the basic stuff and that’s the same thing like these overlays are doing. Overlays are just fixing the basic stuff they’re, not getting into um more complex issues, and that’s where you do need a mixture of automatic and manual testing.
How do you handle pdfs pdfs are problematic in their nature. Um. You need adobe acrobat pro to be able to uh audit them, and we do. I don’t know if we have it coming up with any of the training action may know. We do do training on how to remediate your pdfs.
It is best if you can to get your pdfs just in the website like having the html code. It’S just easier um, but you can use uh adobe acrobat pro. They have an accessibility function so and it’ll. It’S complicated in that you hit the accessibility thing. It’Ll, tell you what your errors are.
Once you fix something, you can’t go back, so it’s very permanent in nature, which makes it hard to use um. But i, and there are services out there that will fix your pdfs, for you just be cautious to make sure they’re actually giving you an accessible product in the end. But the main thing you need to do is adobe acrobat pro in order to be able to fix those ones. I encourage you if you can get the pdf off, if you can make it a part of your website to do that. Thanks denise, i was just going to say that we can include additional resources for you guys on pdfs.
If i embed a youtube video on my website, am i responsible for the transcript close clap closed captioning or is the creator of the video responsible? I would you well, it becomes a third party issues, but if you have the video off of youtube, if they posted it like, if somebody else put like say, i had a website that i posted or video, i posted on youtube and you took it and put It on your site, you couldn’t put captions on it, so it becomes a third party issue. But if you created a video on youtube and then put it on your own site, you can put the captionings on it. It is extremely easy to put captions on youtube videos, there’s a youtube video on how to do it. It’S really just a matter of going in there and making sure, because youtube will automatically generate captions for you, they’re extremely inaccurate.
So all you have to go in is there’s a screen where you can edit the captions, so you could then go in there make sure it actually says what you want it to say um. But if it’s a video that somebody else did – and you put it on your site, you can’t make the changes. So it’s a third party issue, but you shouldn’t you shouldn’t be using things that are not accessible. Anyhow, it’s not an excuse to not be accessible. If that makes sense, yes well well, the follow-up email to this session include pricing for your services further.
Will your services 100 percent guarantee that we will be protected from receiving a letter from an attorney as long as no changes or updates are created by the by us, the user to the site? You want to take that ashley. So, yes, we will definitely include pricing. Um, if you reach out to my myself i can, i can certainly get you pricing um, depending upon which services you’re looking for. If you are looking to have us audit your site or audit and remediate your site or build you a compliant website that the pricing may vary based on the needs, so you can definitely reach out to me directly for a quote on that um, as opposed to The guarantee what we do in our general process, i don’t know how big your guys’s websites are but um in our general process.
We use um rfps, so we use representative pages, so we don’t normally audit. Like say i have a big website of you know. 50 pages, i don’t audit 50 pages, i audit 10 pages, but i make sure i get some elements of everything. So what our sheet will say is our letter will say that you can put on your website. Is that, as of this date, we looked at these pages, these ones are accessible.
These are the third-party issues of things that we cannot change. So if you change something, if there’s an if you didn’t take the errors over to another page like say, you had a youtube video in 15 places on your site, and i looked at one of those and said: okay, these are the errors. This is what you need to fix. You fixed it there, but you didn’t fix it. The other 15 places.
Well, you obviously have an issue still um, so we guarantee the or we the pages that we look at become accessible. If that makes sense yeah, we can go over that in further detail yeah when you, if you’re interested in one of those options – and i think most of your sites are pretty small, so it might not be as big of an issue, but usually that’s just how We, how we do it. What about alt text is that purely decorative yeah web scrapers show that as an error, when it is not, how do we protect ourselves from this type of complaint? So alt text is not purely decorative. Alt text is what the screen reader reads or if say, your photo doesn’t load.
Um it’ll put that in there now you can’t have decorative images. So i don’t know you have a picture of palm trees. It’S not giving any information to the user whatsoever, but it’s there to look pretty well. You can have a decorative alt tag, so it’s an al. It’S an empty alt attack, so it’s like all with quotes.
Um. What will happen, then, is the screen reader will skip over that image and it’s like it’s not even there um. So the scrapers will find that they’re, as i mentioned before, the scrapers will find that there is an alt tag. It will not know if that alt tag is adequate. It’Ll say you know like we had like the example i used before you have a picture of a house and the alt tag could be.
You know, rooster well, there’s an alt tab. The scraper found it, but it’s not a valid tag. Okay, is it good to okay? This is another question about user way. Is it good to use a plug-in like either way, i’m not familiar with userways plug-in i’ve never used it um, but in general, like i said before, any scraper is, like you know, 30 to 80 20 to 30 percent um.
I still encourage you to do little things like tabbing through your website. If you, you know, use vo or nvda, just get the basics on how to use it. Use a screen reader on your site, see what the experience is. Those are the types of things that those scrapers are not gon na find right. I think the quote was in the beginning that a hundred companies that were sued in the first six months of 2020 also had an overlay or an accessibility on their site.
So are they an overlay or are they a scraper user way? I thought it was a widget, oh okay, yeah. So then it’s not gon na, like they only fix the easy stuff right like and they make you. As i said before, with the with the widgets. They um make you use their tools and people are still getting sued for them.
So there’s no guarantee in that right, so a site with only four to ten pages would be guaranteed. Now i think that’s in reference to our services. It depends on what we like you’d have they’d have to talk to you about, i’m assuming that’s what they mean: yeah yeah. We looked at everything right if that’s how it was structured at that point in time, barring any third-party issues, then yes, but like so. If there’s things that you can’t change like, i said what we do is we list the pages that we had what error and then any areas that we couldn’t fix so to say it’s 100 accessible.
There may still be caveats to that. There’S things that were third party issues that we couldn’t fix like um, we do a lot of municipalities right, and so they often have their websites a link to other places. So it’ll say you know, click here to register and it brings it up in another program. Well, we’re not auditing that other program. We don’t audit third parties, so there’ll, be that or we don’t also as promote.
We don’t do um pdfs. So if you have pdfs on your site, we would list those as an exception that we did not look at those. So those would have to become you’d have to hire somebody to do it or do it yourself to make those accessible. So, yes, and no answer that question well, that’s kind of a good segment. You sort of answered that here the free idx sites, including included with our mls, are not wiki compliant.
Who would receive the attorney letter in the instance that the site was targeted, mls or the agent? I’M not an expert on that particular area. I would think the agent would, though i don’t know, maybe your lawyers can answer that, but i would think the agent would all right, i’m just i’m just a developer. I don’t know in general. Do you have any recommendations for blogging, for example, make it plain white background font and black size 12 in order to make it accessible?
Certainly all those things are great um, i also would say: uh use a um sans serif font, so something without the low feet. It’S easier to read: um [, Music ] other. Like a little trick. I obviously wear glasses. I have horrible vision if i don’t have my glasses on so i take my glasses off.
Can i still read it? Um show it to other people. Can they read all of it, but definitely black and white is the easiest way to go something clean a little bit of a larger font. I might even go with like 14 if the size doesn’t bother, you um, just to make it easier to read but yeah. Anything simple is always best when it comes to accessibility, not that you can’t make something cool with accessibility, great and lastly, um have you been successful in correcting issues in godaddy web builder?
That is not wordpress? I haven’t had to do anything with godaddy a lot of our clients. Don’T use that sort of thing, or mainly um wordpress or drupal um. Things were like, like your wix, and these plug and chug type websites can be problematic because, especially like wix, i know they don’t allow you to all the code, so you can still change things like your colors and your alt text on your pictures and these basic Things that we’ve talked about you can still change those things but um a lot of times like with wix that you can’t get to the code level. So i can’t change certain things.
Um and last i checked this probably about six months ago – uh wix was working on it and so i’m sure other people are going to file a suit like weebly or whatever um, to try to make it so that you can access your code. But at this point those sites are extremely difficult to make um accessible, and the recommendation usually is to like go with a wordpress or a drupal or something of that nature. If you can great all right well, oh looks like we have a couple more. That just came in how is divi and i believe divi is an accessible wordpress theme. Oh, is it okay?
Yeah? I i mean. Oh i’m sorry. I hit the wrong thing here. Um, it’s all in your use of it too.
So the site would be accessible and it there’s especially like drupal. I know that they say certain things are accessible and they get brought over funny. So, there’s still maybe some things you got ta like puts around with, and it’s still recommended that you um run a tool on them and do some manual testing to guarantee, because a lot of times these themes, they say, they’re, 100, accessible and they’re – really not um. But then there’s also certain things like: if you change a color or you know, make some customizations on that site. Are you ruining the accessibility?
Are you taking some of that away, so the testing process is still important, even if you’re buying a full, fully accessible. Uh theme: okay, and we did have one more command too – is 2.0 still good or now obsolete. With 2.1 it’s not obsolete.
The recommendation is still 2 1 um coming down the road – i don’t know if this is going to be five years from now or next week, they’re going to change the guidelines again um they’re restructuring on the guidelines, i think, will still be the same, but it’ll be structured, a little different. So the goal the ultimate goal – be 2.1 triple a, but if you could start with 2.0 and then there’s a few some changes in 2.1, you can do it that way, but, ideally, yes, 2.
will be the way to go us personally. When we audit at chromat, we audit to 2 1 great well, thank you, everyone and it looks like um. That concludes our q, a questions uh. Thank you so much denise and thank you. Everyone for joining us feel free to reach out to myself or denise with any questions.
My email address is a burns at prometsource.com and, as i mentioned previously, we will be sharing a recording of the webinar, as well as the presentation which contains all the resources thanks. So much have a great day.