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ADA Compliance Issues for Images on Your Webpage

ADA Compliance Issues for Images on Your Webpage

27 August 2018

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) was established in the early 1990s as a way to guarantee all Americans, regardless of ability level, equal access to public spaces. Business owners and owners of public buildings and amenities are now required to make certain concessions for people with disabilities who use their spaces, which has, in some cases, meant some pretty significant remodeling and upgrades to their facilities.

But it’s not just physical spaces that are affected by the ADA. Websites must also strive for ADA compliance. Specifically, web designers must use proper techniques to ensure all users have access to content contained in images.

Here are just a few of the elements to consider when using images on your site to ensure they are ADA compliant.

  • Alt tags, titles, and descriptions: All images should include ALT tags, titles and long descriptions as needed to describe the content included in those images. This allows blind or vision-impaired people using screen readers to decipher what is in those images which is especially helpful if the image enhances or is required for a particular browsing experience.
  • Images used as links: If an image is also used to link to another page, the alt text for the image should include a description of the link destination.
  • Images with text: If at all possible, you should avoid using any images that contain text, especially if that text is important to the browsing experience of the website. Instead, find a place directly on the page where you can include that text so it’s easier for the screen reader to pick up.
  • Decorative images: If the only purpose an image serves on your website is decorative, then you can feel free to leave the alt tag empty. Again, these rules are primarily for images that are required for (or at least enhance) the user’s experience on the website.

IDMI.Net provides services to business and website owners to make their websites ADA compliant. We start by performing a compliance audit to determine which content on your site is and is not accessible, then we work from there to make the appropriate changes.

For more information about accessibility issues to watch for and the steps you should take to comply with the ADA, contact us at IDMI.Net.

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