Accessibility News: 2009 – The Year of Accessibility?

This is the sort of headline that I particularly enjoy reading, given my recent focus on web accessibility – “2009: The year websites become accessible to all.”

Opera’s Bruce Lawson recently wrote an article for ZDNet UK discussing the prospects of web accessibility gaining prominence in 2009. He cites some key factors that are converging to paint a promising immediate future for the accessibility.

One, as we discussed in “Accessibility News: Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0 Become W3C Recommendation“, the aged Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0 were at least updated formally to 2.0.

Also, standards are expected to be pushed forward this year for Web Accessibility Initiative Accessible Rich Internet Applications — with its goal of Web content and Web applications that more accessible to those with disabilities.

Lawson cites as a factor the hot button issue of legal ramifications as well. Target having to settle out of court for its accessibility lawsuit certainly drew much attention. As as covered my last post, “Accessibility News: Expedia / Hotels.com make considerations for disabled travelers,” Expedia recently announced accessibility strides in response to a lawsuit.

Lawson points out that the British Standards Institution is fast at work on drafting a standard for website accessibility. Such a standard will carry a lot of weight on both sides of the pond.

Read Lawson’s article and his compelling points. Web accessibility has been around for years, but its undeniable that its importance and focus are only elevating.

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