Thing 6: Accessibility

User-friendly design is not a new concept these years; so, creating user-friendly content is not new either nowadays. However, I do find some new things which I haven’t noticed. For example, videos should be subtitled or accompanied by a transcript for those with hearing impairments and feature descriptions for those with visual impairments. (See Thing 5&6) A few years ago, I did not understand why the company I worked for required every video content we put online must include subtitles. Now I see.

Some other things are also useful for me:

Don’t only convey information through colour or an image. Ensure there are text alternatives to enable people with sight impairments to access the information.

Avoiding using animations, and if it is necessary to use them please provide a warning.

People are visually sensitive. That’s why there are a lot of contents using amazing images or slogans to excite our sensation. On the other hand, we overlooked those people who don’t have visual availability to access the web. Therefore these rules in Thing 6 although are quite a common sense but is useful to keep in mind when creating web contents. They remind me that there are other people in the world who need to use the web in various ways.

To be honest, when surfing the web, the user experience of a website is the most important thing I am looking for. If the website is difficult to navigate the things I want to do, or poorly designed, I won’t visit again and would have a negative impression of that company or brand. These new rules I learned from Thing 6 are the new ones I will certainly notice when browsing the web from now on.

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