Chapter 13

Accessibility in SharePoint

In Chapter 1 you had a brief introduction to accessibility as it relates to Web design. You saw a little bit of the reasons why accessibility should matter and some of the potential consequences of not taking it seriously. But this exposure to accessibility was meant to be merely a cursory overview of this critical element of Web design. It wasn't meant to be a truly deep-dive approach; that is what this chapter is for.

In this chapter, you should hopefully come away with a much more solid understanding of what accessibility means, how it affects today's Web design, how SharePoint measures up, and what you can do as a SharePoint developer to make things better.

As part of this last point, you will be introduced to some free tools that are available that, if used properly and for what they were intended, can really move your SharePoint installations much closer to accessibility compliance. Will you be Priority 3 compliant (don't worry; you'll get to know what that means a bit later in this chapter)? Probably not. But at least you will know where the shortcomings are and be able to talk intelligently about them. And maybe work toward new solutions that can help figure some of these problems out.

Accessibility Today

Accessibility, in its simplest definition, would be “making the Web available to everyone.” You might be thinking, “The Web is available to everyone already.” Is it? Imagine going to your favorite site while blind. Is it still available ...

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