Category Archives: Web Accessibility

U.S. Department of Justice Invites Public Comments on Movie Captioning and Audio Descriptions

The U.S. Department of Justice is accepting comments on proposed changes to its regulations for captioning and audio descriptions in movie theaters under Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Title III covers public accommodations and commercial facilities, including movie theaters. The proposed rule provides specific requirements for movie theaters to provide effective [...]

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FCC Workshop on Accessible Social Media on July 17

The FCC’s Accessibility and Innovation Initiative will host an all-day workshop on “Accessing Social Media,” on Thursday, July 17, 2014, from 9 am to 4 PM. The workshop will foster discussion on how to make social media apps, tools, and content more accessible to people with disabilities. Bring your ideas, case studies, and list of [...]

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USACM Supports Creation of a New Public Interest Trade Advisory Committee

USACM today strongly supported the creation of a new Public Interest Trade Advisory Committee in its comments submitted to the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR). The Public Interest Trade Advisory Committee would serve as a new mechanism for stakeholder input on trade policy issues. USACM encourages the Advisory Committee, once established, to [...]

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New Report on Third-Party Video Captioning and U.S. Copyright Law

G3ict yesterday released a white paper, authored by Colorado Law Professor Blake Reid, on third-party captioning of video programming and the legal uncertainties arising from conflicts between accessibility laws and regulations and U.S. copyright law. The paper, Third Party Captioning and Copyright, discusses how third-party captioning of video programming can potentially result in copyright infringement [...]

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NIST Cloud and Mobility Forum and Workshop on March 25-27, 2014

The U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) will host a free NIST Cloud and Mobility Forum and Workshop on March 25-27, at its campus in Gaithersburg, Maryland. The event will include panel discussions and presentations on future directions for the accessibility, usability, reliability, security, and privacy of mobile devices and [...]

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Call for Presentations on Mobile Accessibility for the M-Enabling Summit in Washington, D.C.

The M-Enabling Summit conference invites program proposals for presentations and case studies. The conference will be held June 9-10, 2014 in the Washington, D.C. area and is co-sponsored by G3ict, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and the International Telecommunication Union (ITU). The conference attracts attendees from the U.S. federal government, foreign governments, academia, industry, and [...]

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FCC Invites Nominations for the 3rd Annual Chairman’s Awards for Advancement in Accessibility

The FCC is seeking nominations for the 3rd Annual FCC Chairman’s Awards for Advancement in Accessibility until March 31, 2014. The Chairman’s Awards aim to highlight and encourage innovation in accessible technologies, standards, and best practices that will benefit people with disabilities. Nominations can include a product, service, technology, or practice introduced publicly between August [...]

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FCC’s Accessibility and Innovation Initiative Speaker Series: Dr. Juan E. Gilbert

The FCC’s Accessibility and Innovation Initiative Speaker Series will feature Dr. Juan E. Gilbert presenting on “Innovation in Voting Accessibility” on Tuesday, March 11, 2014, at 9 am ET. The presentation will be followed by accessible technology demonstrations in the FCC’s Technology Experience Center. The event is free and open to the public. Pre-registration for [...]

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FCC Invites Public Comments on the Accessibility of User Interfaces for Video Programming

The FCC invites public comments related to the usability and accessibility of user display settings for closed captioning of video, on-screen text menus for video programming guides, and audible emergency information to accompany on-screen emergency information. The FCC also would like feedback on whether it would be beneficial to notify consumers of the availability of [...]

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FCC Invites Public Comments on Closed Captioning of IP-Delivered Video Clips

The FCC invites public comments on applying closed captioning rules to IP-delivered video clips. The deadline for public comments is January 27, 2013. In its IP Closed Captioning Order, the FCC determined that full-length online video programming must provide closed captioning pursuant to the 21st Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act of 2010 (CVAA). The [...]

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Article on the “Legal Aspects of Interface Accessibility in the U.S.”

The December issue of the Communications of the ACM includes an article co-authored by USACM Accessibility Committee Chair Harry Hochheiser and committee member Jonathan Lazar on the “Legal Aspects of Interface Accessibility in the U.S.” Their article responds to and expands upon ACM President Vint Cerf’s article from a year ago, “Why Is Accessibility So [...]

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International Day of Persons with Disabilities on December 3, 2013

Today, December 3, is the UN’s International Day of Persons with Disabilities. This year’s theme is “Break Barriers, Open Doors: for an inclusive society and development for all.” The UN says that more than 1 billion people, or roughly 15% of the world’s population, live with some form of disability. A major focus of the [...]

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New Federal Regulations Require Accessible Airline Websites and Kiosks

New federal regulations by the U.S. Department of Transportation require airlines to make their websites and airport kiosks more accessible for people with disabilities. Airlines have up to 2 years to make reservation, flight, and frequent flyer account information on their websites accessible and up to 3 years to make their entire websites accessible. They [...]

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Library of Congress Announces New Mobile App for Braille and Audio Books

The Library of Congress announced today that its Braille and Audio Reading Download (BARD) system is going mobile with an app for Apple devices now available for download and a forthcoming Android app in development. These mobile apps will allow the 800,000+ institutional and individual users registered with its National Library Service for the Blind [...]

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FCC’s Accessibility and Innovation Initiative Speaker Series: Yevgen Borodin

The FCC’s Accessibility and Innovation Initiative Speaker Series will feature Yevgen Borodin on “Improving Accessibility for the General Public” on September 12, 2013, at 10 am EDT. The presentation will be followed by accessible technology demonstrations in the FCC’s Technology Experience Center. The event is free and open to the public. Pre-registration for in-person attendance [...]

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U.S. Access Board Public Meeting on September 11

The U.S. Access Board, an independent federal agency, will hold its regular public Board Meeting on Wednesday, September 11, 2013, in Washington, D.C. The meeting will be accessible to persons with disabilities. In the morning, the Board will receive an overview of the new U.S. Access Board website, which has been designed with the forthcoming [...]

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USACM Submits Comments to the FCC on Accessibility Waiver Request for E-Readers

USACM today submitted comments to the FCC on a request by the Coalition of E-Reader Manufacturers to exempt e-readers from the accessibility requirements under the advanced communication provisions of the Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act of 2010 (CVAA). Congress passed the CVAA to help ensure that people with disabilities are able to utilize [...]

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FCC Requests Public Comments on Accessibility Waiver for E-Readers

The FCC is accepting public comments on a request by the Coalition of E-Reader Manufacturers to exempt e-readers from accessibility requirements applicable to “advanced communications services” under the 21st Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act (CVAA) and its implementing regulations. The deadline for public comments is September 3, 2013. Congress passed the CVAA to help [...]

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USACM Provides Feedback on Non-Web Accessibility Guidelines

USACM submitted feedback to the W3C on the latest draft of the “WC3 Guidance on Applying WCAG 2.0 to Non-Web Information and Communications Technologies.” The proposed guidance document seeks to provide informative guidance on how the international standards for web accessibility, known as the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0, can be interpreted and applied [...]

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USACM Welcomes Claudia Gordon as White House Public Engagement Advisor for the Disability Community

The ACM U.S. Public Policy Council welcomes President Obama’s appointment of Claudia Gordon as the new White House Public Engagement Advisor for the Disability Community. Ms. Gordon previously served as the Special Assistant to the Director of the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs, a Senior Policy Advisor within the U.S. [...]

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Internet Policy Task Force Releases New Green Paper on Copyright Policy

The U.S. Department of Commerce Internet Policy Task Force today released a green paper titled “Copyright Policy, Creativity, and Innovation in the Digital Economy.” The 122-page report provides an analysis of copyright policy since 1995, recommends possible regulatory and legislative actions, and identifies specific policy issues for further discussion and public input. The USPTO and [...]

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FCC Open Commission Meeting on July 19

The FCC will discuss the IP Speech-to-Speech Relay program and a report on the implementation of Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act (CVAA) at its Open Commission Meeting this Friday, July 19, 10:30 am-noon ET. A live webcast will be available. According to the meeting announcement, the accessibility topics will be the last two [...]

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Highlights from Clayton Lewis on “The Future of Inclusive Design”

At the FCC today, Computer Science Professor Clayton Lewis asserted a new paradigm for accessibility is emerging and that this paradigm may require changes to public policies related to accessibility, such as Section 508, and intellectual property laws. Professor Lewis, a member of the ACM U.S. Public Policy Council, kicked off today’s FCC’s Accessibility and [...]

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Accessible Technology Demos at the FCC on July 16

Tomorrow, the FCC will feature demonstrations of accessible technology solutions from 12:30 to 3 p.m. in its Technology Experience Center. The event is part of the FCC’s Accessibility and Innovation Initiative Speaker Series. As a reminder, USACM member Professor Clayton Lewis will be kicking off the day with his presentation on “The Future of Inclusive [...]

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FCC’s Speaker Series Will Feature Clayton Lewis on Inclusive Design Online

The FCC’s Accessibility and Innovation Initiative Speaker Series will feature USACM member and accessibility expert Clayton Lewis on “The Future of Inclusive Design Online” on Tuesday, July 16, at 10 am EDT. The event is free and open to the public. A live webcast will be available. Event Summary The evolution of technology is creating [...]

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FCC Emergency Access Advisory Committee Meeting on June 14

The FCC Emergency Access Advisory Committee (EEAC) will meet tomorrow, Friday, June 14, from 10:30 am to 3:30 pm EDT, to discuss the technologies and protocols needed to ensure access to Next Generation 911 emergency services by individuals with disabilities. A live webcast will be available. The Next Generation 911 (NG911) system will support communications [...]

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Senate Briefing on Accessible Information and Communication Technologies

Former U.S. Congressman Tony Coelho, who was the primary author and sponsor of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990, moderated a Senate briefing yesterday on “The Impact of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) on Global Commerce and the International Accessibility Eco-System.” The briefing brought together 200+ participants [...]

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Senate Hearing on Making Movies and Inflight Entertainment Accessible

The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee held a legislative hearing last week on two bills that would address accessible entertainment in movie theaters and on airplanes. Witnesses included representatives from the FCC, the U.S. Department of Justice, the American Council for the Blind, the National Association for the Deaf, The Benetech Initiative, and [...]

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U.S. Election Assistance Commission Roundtable on Voting Accessibility on May 9, 2013

The U.S. Election Assistance Commission will hold a roundtable on “Transforming Election Administration, Voting System Accessibility, and the Certification Process” on Thursday, May 9 from noon to 5:30 pm EDT to explore current and future research in accessible voting technology. The roundtable will be available by live webcast. ACM U.S. Public Policy Council member Dr. [...]

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HHS: Technology Accessibility and Inclusion Conference on May 7, 2013

The Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) will hold its first “a11y@HHS: Technology Accessibility and Inclusion Conference,” on Tuesday, May 7, 2013 at the FDA White Oak Campus. The conference is open to the public. A live webcast will be available. Advance registration is required. The all-day conference will feature sessions on web and [...]

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New GAO Report on Voting Accessibility

Almost all polling places had an accessible voting system during the 2008 elections, according to a new report by the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO). That’s the good news. The bad news: At nearly half of the polling places with an accessible voting system, voters with disabilities still faced barriers to voting independently and privately. [...]

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Congressional Forum on Voting Accessibility

National Council on Disability’s Congressional Policy Forum on Voting Access “The Help America Vote Act Ten Years Later: Has the Law Accomplished Its Aim?” Tuesday, April 23, 2 – 4:30 p.m. Dirksen Senate Office Building – Room 608 (Senate Budget Committee Hearing Room) This Congressional Policy Forum will help inform the National Council on Disability [...]

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National Council on Disability – Public Forum on the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

Public Forum on the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Tuesday, April 23, 9:30 – 10 a.m. Access Board Conference Room 1331 F Street, NW, Suite 800 78 Federal Register 20957 Tomorrow, the National Council on Disability will accept public comments in person on how the Council should engage on the UN [...]

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President Establishes Voting Commission; Focus Will Include Voting Technology

As Renee mentioned, President Obama issued an Executive Order establishing the Presidential Commission on Election Administration. The Commission was a promise made in the President’s State of the Union address this year, and responds to concerns over long waiting times for voters in the 2012 elections. The Commission is charged with identifying best practices and [...]

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Accessible Voting Technology Research Workshop, April 1-2

The U.S. Election Assistance Commission and the National Institute of Standards and Technology will be holding a two-day workshop on April 1-2 to explore current and future research in accessible voting technology. The two-day workshop will be available by live webcast. The Workshop comes just days after President Obama’s Executive Order creating a new Election [...]

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USACM Comments on Electronic Health Records

USACM submitted its public comment on the proposed new and revised certification standards and implementation specifications that define the technological capabilities, functionality, and security of health information technology and electronic health records used in the Medicare and Medicaid Incentive Programs. The proposed new and revised certification standards are part of the national effort to modernize [...]

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USACM and SIGCHI Comment on Section 508 Refresh on Accessibility

USACM and SIGCHI submitted comments this week to the Access Board on the Draft ICT Standards and Guidelines on accessibility of federal government information and communication technologies.

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USACM Comments on Proposed Web Accessibility Rules

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was passed in 1990, and did not address the Internet. However, the Department of Justice established, most notably through a case involving Target, established that the ADA provisions applied to websites. However, the Department has not been forthcoming with guidance on how websites can be made compliant with the [...]

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House Passes Bill to Improve Accessibility on the Web

The House recently passed H.R. 3101, the 21st Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act. Sponsored by Rep. Markey of Massachusetts, the bill seeks to apply standards of accessibility first encouraged by the Americans with Disabilities Act to online services. Specifically the bill would: Extend general accessibility provisions for equipment that provides voice communication to include [...]

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Internet Accessibility Bill Introduced

Representative Markey recently introduced the 21st Century Communications and Accessibility Act, HR 6320. This bill focuses on amending the Communications Act to ensure that new Internet-enabled telephone and video services and equipment are accessible to and usable by people with disabilities and closes existing gaps in telecommunications laws. These services would include captioning or video [...]

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New Voting Study Addresses Usability Concerns

In the debates about the use of electronic voting machines there is a refrain that direct electronic recorder (DRE) voting machines are much easier to use and much more accurate in capturing voter intent than other voting systems. A new comprehensive usability study of five commercial e-voting machines (published by the Brookings Institution) finds that [...]

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ACM Groups Release Statement on Web Accessibility

Today, several ACM groups, including USACM, released a statement on measures that should be taken to increase web accessibility. You can read the press release and statement online. The statement is a joint statement of USACM; the ACM Special Interest Groups on Accessibility (SIGACCESS), Hypertext, Hypermedia and the Web (SIGWEB), and Computer-Human Interaction (SIGCHI); and [...]

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