Creating Web Content for the Disabled: A Call to Compassionate Action

Web Accessibility for the Disabled

As we all know, optimal web design requires accommodating sites for those with disabilities. Guidelines exist under the Americans With Disabilities Act to enhance the disabled ability to access web content.

Writing Beyond Profit

According to the CDC, millions of people are considered functionally disabled in the United States.  See the statistics. Over the course of my studies in web technology, design experts frequently encouraged making websites more accessible for the disabled. The motivating factor, however, usually centered on  the bottom line–you reach more people; you sell more products. You make more money.

The authors of respected publications emphasize that collectively, the disabled have millions of dollars to spend. Thus, in viable business models, it make good sense to target all consumers with disposable incomes. Experts offer the motivational carrot of increased profits to encourage making web content more accessible to the disabled. Yet, there exists a greater reason for paying attention to accessibility issues than just gleaning more money from this segment of the population. Continue reading

Advertising and Writing for the Web: A Matter of Respect

Ads and the Consumer Culture

If we watch television, or participate in social media, or engage in any of the various forms of mainstream media, we are exposed to ads and social manipulation. We are told that  we will be happier if we consume said product or idea. The advertising culture has created a type of bombardment, throwing ads in people’s faces as an exchange or cost for consuming desired content. The sheer volume often leaves people ignoring the ads and in a sense numbs them to the real messages that are being communicated. Continue reading