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Chapter 9. Equivalent Alternatives > An Alternative to Images: ALT Text

An Alternative to Images: ALT Text

The idea of equivalent alternatives is fundamental to Web accessibility for people with disabilities. We might think of this as a kind of “principled redundancy”—providing multiple paths to key ideas and information to ensure that all roads do in fact lead to Rome.

The most common type of equivalent alternative is ALT text , which should be associated with images and selectable regions of image maps. ALT text is a short phrase that succinctly identifies the image and makes its function clear to a person who cannot see the image. For image maps, ALT text is associated with each selectable area to allow people using screen readers, talking browsers, and refreshable Braille displays to access the links and understand where they go.


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