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Chapter 13. Enhancing Accessibility thro... > Put Multi- in Your Media!

Put Multi- in Your Media!

Video, audio, and animation are important resources for many Web developers, especially those working on news, entertainment, and online learning. The ability to enrich a Web site with multimedia elements enables developers to provide the “equivalent alternatives” that we have emphasized throughout this book. These same elements, however, can pose formidable obstacles for people who are blind or visually impaired, people who are deaf or hard of hearing, or people with other challenges (such as cognitive impairments and learning disabilities) if they are not integrated into the site through accessible means.

If you are worried that making your Web sites more accessible for people with disabilities means giving up multimedia, you can relax. It’s simply not true; in fact, the opposite may be closer to the truth. In some cases, the best way to enhance accessibility may be to use more media! Think about it for a minute—using more ways to deliver information means there are more ways for users to get to the information on your site. The key is to use these options as the alternatives they are and not to rely on a single sensory capability to receive important information. Used in the right way, multimedia is a critical resource for accessibility!


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