News & Events
Here you will find the latest news as well as upcoming and previous events.
- James Taylor, International Publishers Association—Guest Host
- Gautier Chomel, EDRLab
- Prashant Verma, DAISY Consortium
- Brianna Walker, Taylor and Francis
Introduction to Accessible PublishingGautier Chomel reminded us that accessible publishing is big business and that digital content is a growing market. With changes in learning methods impacting this trend we can expect the growth to continue, particularly as legislation (such as The European Accessibility Act) impacts the supply chain and changes publishers’ perspectives. This session aims to give us a refresher for what we are all trying to achieve.
About Print DisabilityPrashant Verma detailed exactly what a print disability is and how many people are affected by low vision, blindness, learning disabilities and developmental difficulties, all preventing access to printed material. Accessible digital content is revolutionary for readers with a print disability.
How Could People Read Your Publications?It is well worth watching the video of this session for some examples of how people with print disabilities are able to read using accessible content. These demos and examples include:
- People with low vision tend to increase the text size and change the background color – Prashant pointed out that there are 240 million people worldwide with low vision.
- People who are blind use screen readers and/or electronic braille – all made possible by excellent navigation and accessibility features optimized within the content.
- People with learning difficulties can customize the text layout and use the read aloud function if they need to.
- Those with physical disabilities have a variety of options now available to them including switch or voice control technology
Accessible Digital Publishing PracticesBrianna Walker gave us the publisher perspective with some wonderful examples of good practice that has been adopted at Taylor and Francis by optimizing the features on offer within the EPUB 3 format. Brianna informed us of 4 top tips for good practice:
- Ensure text is text (and not images of text)
- Provide good structure
- Describe images
- Provide accessibility metadata
The Case For Accessible PublishingThe business case for accessible publishing is very often something that we have to advocate for in-house. Senior executives want to know that accessible publishing will help them to:
- reach more readers
- comply with the law
- meet purchasing requirements
- make better ebooks
- impact the supply chain
- promote their image
Where To StartBrianna encouraged us all to consider a holistic approach when starting out by considering the bigger picture before focusing on what can be done in the short term and long term. It’s key to get commitment in-house and that investment needs to be on-going.
Patience is required but starting the journey is an instant winDiscover the other webinars we’re running! Read More
We recently conducted three webinars dedicated to introducing accessible publishing to an audience of people working in the publishing sector in Africa.
This webinar covering “The Fundamentals” was delivered in 3 languages, the recordings and associated materials are linked below:
First, we heard about the importance of accessible publishing for Africa from IPA President Bodour Al Qasimi and Ernest Oppong, Acting Executive Director of the African Publishers Network. Then we learned how accessible publishing can benefit millions of Africans with different print disabilities. We concluded the session with some examples of Accessible Publishing practices, and information about the free training that will be offered in the coming months.
These webinars and the associated training are part of an initiative driven by the Africa Publishing Innovation Fund (APIF), a grant-giving program co-led by philanthropic organization Dubai Cares working with the International Publishers Association (IPA), and the DAISY Consortium.Read More
Creating Accessible Books for Diverse and Affordable Reading Devices
At DAISY we have a long history of working with the world’s leading technology companies to deliver amazing solutions for people with print disabilities. We’re delighted to announce our latest project which is made possible thanks to the Microsoft AI for Accessibility program.
In 2004 a global summit organized by Microsoft and DAISY began the journey towards the global sharing of accessible publications for people with print disabilities. A lot of progress has been achieved since then, but the benefits have not reached most people in lower-income countries. This project will unlock accessible reading for people who currently do not have access.
As a result of the Marrakesh Treaty more than a million books have become available under international exchange through global collaborations. These books are in file formats that deliver a first-class accessible reading experience on smart phones, computers, or dedicated hardware players. However, these playback devices often don’t reach people in low resource parts of the developing countries. Many rural areas do not have adequate electricity or internet connectivity.
In this project DAISY will be developing an easy-to-use application to convert books so they can be used by the devices typically in the hands of persons with disabilities in low resourced parts of the world. This includes basic phones, affordable braille displays, and even solar-powered audio players.
The solution will make it much easier for disability organizations, libraries, and schools to create or convert books for the devices typically used in their environments. We think of this tool like a Swiss-army knife, a small and very easy to use tool which offers multiple solutions, taking content from an array of formats and converting it automatically to various accessible formats.
Through this transformative project many people with print disabilities will be able to study at school, prepare for employment, and gain access to health and emergency information using the reading devices that are popular in their communities.
Thanks to support from Microsoft, this innovative converter tool will be made freely available to all, helping to deliver accessible reading materials in the formats needed to people all around the world.
There are many aspects to this project which we will be sharing in greater depth over the coming months. To keep up with the latest developments from this project, along with other activities from DAISY and our member organizations, subscribe to the DAISY Planet Newsletter.Read More