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Accessibility in Digital Publishing: Notes from a Summit

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Judy Brewer, Director, Web Accessibility Initiative of the World Wide Web Consortium, speaks at the publishing breakfast

New federal regulations on accessibility for digital and web publishing are expected to have a significant impact on the publishing industry.

The American Foundation for the Blind was pleased to co-sponsor, and AFB staff were pleased to attend, a summit on accessibility in publishing, along with many other publishers and accessibility experts, hosted by the Center for Publishing Innovation.

Discussions included the impact of revisions to Section 508 and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and how these changes may affect digital publishing, eLearning, K–12 portals, higher education, professional journals, and library sales.

The three main take-aways were greater awareness, knowledge of tools and resources, and plans to take action. Many of the largest publishers were present, as were digital publishing accessibility advocates.

The Access Board expects to release refreshed Section 508 standards in October and the Department of Justice has signaled that publishers will be expected to comply, not only in terms of accessible books, but also content on their websites.

The Worldwide Web Consortium’s Web Accessibility Initiative, the International Digital Publishers Forum, the U.S. Access Board, Book Industry Study Group, Pearson, and Benetech, among others, made presentations about tools and resources for accessibility guidance and compliance with Section 508 and WCAG 2.0 standards.

AFB Press, the publishing arm of the American Foundation for the Blind, is proud to be the leading publisher in the field of blindness and visual impairment. We make all of our materials—from e-books to DVDs to online journals—available in multiple formats, and at the highest levels of accessibility. Connect with us on Facebook to learn more about our offerings, or sign up for News from AFB Press to be notified whenever a new publication becomes available.


Topics:
Books
Conference Recaps
Web Accessibility
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