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Here are the latest new stories on the developments in accessibility for December:
Section 508 gets an update: New website accessibility guidelines for government sites take effect in January (GovTech)
In January, new website accessibility standards go into effect for American government websites. These guidelines require that readers with hearing and sight disabilities who use assistive technology must be able to access all the content on government websites. Compliance to the new regulations may not be easy, especially for the government websites in small cities and townships. However, Vision, a software and consulting company, is offering free tutorials to help.
Web accessibility increases Cyber Monday sales (Market Wired)
Bureau of Internet Accessibility
The Bureau of Internet Accessibility has found Cyber Monday sales can increase with the implementation of accessibility on websites. Though WCAG 2.0 guidelines may be a little difficult for retailers to understand, they recommend some simple tips to updating accessibility features. Making these changes can also help retailers protect themselves against lawsuits for not complying with disability laws.
Though the American federal government is still working out the standards for internet compliance with the ADA, companies like Accessibility 360 are working to make websites more accessible. Accessibility 360 has a team of 15 developers who audit websites to ensure compliance. The move to expand accessibility comes on the heels of a string of lawsuits against companies for not providing disability access.
Are internet standards standing in the way of accessibility? (Pacific Standard)
David M. Perry
Recently, Berkeley University removed publicly available content after a lawsuit determined they need to make the content accessible. Berkeley cited making this content accessible would be too expensive. Many other companies worry they also will not be able to afford accessibility upgrades. This highlights the need to build content with accessibility standards from the beginning. Even with this challenge, automation and machine learning will be able to mitigate these costs and make it easier for websites to implement full accessibility.
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