Unprecedented Access:
Improving the User Experience for People with Print Disabilities

Below are listed questions that were submitted during the webinar. Answers from the presenters will be added when available. Not all the questions could be responded to during the live webinar, so those that could not be addressed at the time are also included below.


  • The State of Information Resource Accessibility Standards: DAISY and WCAG
    George Kerscher, Secretary General, DAISY Consortium
  • Collaboration with Publishers: The Institutional Response to Accessibility
    Jon R. Gunderson, Coordinator of Assistive Communication and Information Technology Accessibility, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • Opportunities and Challenges in Serving Customers with Print Disabilities: The Publisher's Response to Accessibility
    Alicia Wise, Director of Universal Access, Elsevier

Feel free to contact us if you have any additional questions about library, publishing, and technical services standards, standards development, or if you have have suggestions for new standards, recommended practices, or areas where NISO should be engaged.

NISO Webinar Questions and Answers

  1. With the success of Ebsco's redesign of their website, do you know of any other vendors who are following that lead?

  2. What is the state of assistive devices support of standards like ePub or HTML 5?

    George Kerscher: I go through the state of many of the reading systems in the slides I did not cover during the webinar. (Slides are available here.) Regarding DAISY reading systems that support EPUB I have:

    • Humanware Stream
    • Dolphin EasyReader
    • gh's ReadHear PC and ReadHear for Mac
      Note: RFB&D is making ReadHear available for free to their members. This will play RFB&D content only. However, the Pro version is available for a small fee ($50 approx.) and is the full featured version. This includes support for MathML!
    • Icon
    • BraillePlus
    • Emerson, an open source basic reader

  3. Is UIC working with Voyager? Can you talk about accessibility of library catalogs?

    Jon Gunderson: We have worked with exLibris on Voyager accessibility and met with them in their offices several times a few years ago. At that time they implemented many of our recommendations and were able to understand accessibility.

    We were working through the CALRI consortium to address the issues. We have not had contact with them for several years though.

  4. Do any of the presenters have concerns about the wcag 2.0 standard and accessibility?

    Alicia Wise: No concerns here, and itís extremely helpful to have a single international standard! Level A conformance is a very good target for all publishers. Level AA conformance is really rather more "stretchy" at present and is a good target for some but not all products/services. Level AAA conformance is a very high aspiration, and probably not realistic for most at present.

    Jon Gunderson: Publishers should at least implement the AA requirement:

    3.1.2 Language of Parts: The human language of each passage or phrase in the content can be programmatically determined except for proper names, technical terms, words of indeterminate language, and words or phrases that have become part of the vernacular of the immediately surrounding text. (Level AA)

    For publications with multiple languages this is critical for speech users.