Accessible Publishing – 2021 DAISY Information Sharing Day (W)
Towards the end of 2021 we held a special DAISY Information Sharing Day webinar. This part of the webinar was focused on Accessible Publishing.
This page contains:
- Video of the webinar
- Speaker Information
- Session Overview
- European Accessibility Act Mapping
- The User Experience Guide for Displaying Accessibility Metadata
- Reading Systems Evaluations Project
- Near Future Plans
- Related Resources
Full Video of the Webinar
- Richard Orme, The DAISY Consortium
- Maarten Verboom, President of The DAISY Consortium
- Avneesh Singh, The DAISY Consortium
- George Kerscher, The DAISY Consortium
- Gregorio Pellegrino, The LIA Foundation
- Charles La Pierre, Benetech
- Erin Lucas, RedShelf
- Stacy Ray, Vital Source
Maarten Verboom opened the session by welcoming the large audience and explaining that this final session looks at the developments in accessible publishing that The DAISY Consortium have been involved in.
Avneesh Singh gave an overview of this final part of the day, describing briefly the projects and areas that will be looked at:
- The European Accessibility Act Mapping Project. As EPUB Accessibility 1.1 nears Candidate Recommendation Stage (i.e. it is feature complete) it has been timely to look at whether it meets the requirements of the upcoming legislation, The European Accessibility Act.
- The User Experience Guide to Displaying Accessibility Metadata. It has always been desirable that accessibility metadata should be included with publications. 2 years ago, VitalSource began displaying accessibility metadata as it appeared within an EPUB file and it became clear that the industry would benefit from guidance in how to present this machine readable information in a user friendly way. The development of the UX Guide is a major development for the presentation of metadata.
- Reading Systems Evaluations Project. The reading systems evaluation project began in 2013 and is now managed and maintained by The DAISY Consortium via epubtest.org. Test results from this project help developers to improve their ebook reading systems for people with disabilities.
- Near Future Plans
Gregorio Pellegrino described to us the focus of this project: Do the requirements of EPUB 1.1 meet the requirements of the European Accessibility Act? The EAA, which becomes law in 2025, requires ebooks to be born accessible and the European Commission is working on which standards support the requirements of the new directive. The short answer to the question posed is “yes” and Gregorio gave us detailed examples, backing this up. The European Commission is now evaluating the mapping document and it is expected that EPUB will be deemed a suitable standard for accessible ebooks.
George Kerscher and Charles La Pierre presented the newly launched UX guide which was edited by Charles and Gregorio. User want to be able to discover content which meets their needs but in today’s market persons with disabilities do not know if they will be able to read a title or not. The good news is that there are many more born accessible publications available but it remains difficult to discover these and we need a consistent method for displaying this information in a user friendly manner.
The UX guide is divided into 2 parts: principles and techniques. The principles section looks at the key information that is required by the user and suggests a method of display that makes it straight forward for the purchaser to identify if a title meets their needs. For example; the metadata string in schema.org which reads “Access mode sufficient = textual” can actually be presented as “screen reader friendly”. A much more palatable solution!
Richard Orme, Erin Lucas and Stacy Ray presented the epubtest.org project which has become increasingly important for reading system developers as they work to improve the accessibility of their reading solutions. The consistent evaluation across platforms is welcomed together with the thorough feedback. Participation is welcomed from developers, publishers and testers globally.
Avneesh Singh completed the session by describing the focus of the near future:
- EPUB 1.1 – driving this specification through to Final Recommendation Stage
- UX Guide – Further improvements from feedback and continued work on the harmonization of metadata standards
- Accessibility Summary – Publishers would welcome best practice guidance on completing the only human readable accessibility metadata field and work has begun on the development of this documentation.
- Publishing Specification of the Future – DAISY is involved in current discussion on what the next major publishing specification might be
- Reading Systems – testing continues particularly for Math ML and Extended Descriptions
- Full video transcript
- DAISY Activities at the Information Sharing Day
- Member Activities at the Information Sharing Day