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  • Graham Armfield 10:22 am on October 22, 2013 Permalink
    Tags: ,   

    Welcome to the Make WordPress Accessible Team 

    Hello. You’ve found the blog of the Make WordPress Accessible team – a bunch of volunteers who are striving to improve the accessibility of WordPress. We need your help.

    (More …)

  • Joseph Karr O'Connor 6:10 pm on April 18, 2014 Permalink | Log in to leave a Comment  

    Accessibility Team Update: April 16, 2014 

    Team Member Thanks

    Thanks all the other teams who participated in making WordPress 3.9 happen and who reached out to the accessibility team for assistance. Many more people are asking us to check things than ever before. Special thanks to accessibility team members David A. Kennedy, Graham Armfield, and Joe Dolson who are mentioned in the 3.9 credits.

    Weekly Meeting Time

    There’s always confusion when the time changes and I regret that I compounded the confusion by being confused myself. I’m now using StatusClock.app by Pulsely for OS X set to GMT/UTC so I’ll be sure to call the weekly meeting to order at 19:00 UTC.

    Previous Test

    When the accessibility team did the last round of testing it was intended that it be done over a short period of time, but due to various factors it spread out over two months. That was a keyboard-only test because we were certain that, given our resources, we could not finish a full test. It turns out we could not finish even the attenuated test in a reasonable amount of time. This was not the intended outcome but I learned that we need many more testers to perform the testing in an effective manner. This is why I was very glad to make a testing plan with Jeanne Spellman of the W3C when we were at the International Technology and Persons With Disabilities Conference a month ago.

    New Test Round

    Jeanne Spellman of the W3C, the team contact for the User Agent Working Group and the Authoring Tool Accessibility Guidelines Working Group (AUWG), has committed to helping us test WordPress trunk using the Authoring Tool Accessibility Guidelines (ATAG). Jeanne has assembled a good number of volunteers to do the testing and they will file tickets or bump things up to me as soon as they have identified an issue. This time I feel confident that with current team members providing guidance the W3C team will be able to accomplish the task in a short enough period of time to be most effective. Testing is now scheduled to start the week of May 12, 2014.


    For those not familiar with ATAG, it is primarily for developers of authoring tools including software for generating websites such as content management systems. There are two areas of focus: making sure that the authoring tool user interface is accessible, and that the authoring tool supports the production of accessible content. Just as with WCAG 2.0, ATAG has three levels of success criteria in order of increasing compliance: A, AA, and AAA. We are testing to WCAG 2.0 level AA so it follows that the ATAG testing will also be done to level AA. ATAG testing will help us discover the issues we need to address next. ATAG at a Glance provides a short summary of the accessibility principles and guidelines in ATAG 2.0.

  • Joe Dolson 9:02 pm on April 15, 2014 Permalink | Log in to leave a Comment
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    Update on accessibility-ready theme tag 

    We’re gradually working the kinks out of the process. There was an oversight in the automated process that added the accessibility-ready keyword to themes, so that only new themes were automatically getting the keyword, and not updated themes that added it. That’s been fixed, which will improve our ability to note themes that need to go through the review process.

    There’s a lot of support for the process, and the theme review team is invested in making this work, but I could use some backup in actually doing the reviews. Even if you don’t have the accessibility background, let me know if you’re interested: I’m happy to provide training to make sure you’ve got the knowledge it takes to do this review.

    • David A. Kennedy 4:00 pm on April 16, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      @joedolson I can help out with this once I finish up a few other projects. It’s a good place for me to contribute since it’s theme-centric. Feel free to reach out to me with details on how to get started.

  • Joseph Karr O'Connor 7:56 am on March 29, 2014 Permalink  

    Accessibility Team Update: March 26, 2014 

    Meeting Time Change

    We will be going back to a meeting time of 19:00 UTC next Wednesday, April 2.


    The meeting this past Wednesday was interesting. Now we’re getting to the heart of the matter.

    So far, we have compiled a keyboard-only report on most of 3.8 and have some data to rely on.

    The first pattern we identified from the testing is poor visual focus in the Admin. @RianReitveld created a ticket dealing with keyboard focus. Better visual indication of focus on elements in the Admin (#27173). This ticket is now closed (fixed.) Thanks Rian!

    Testing 3.9

    We have to quickly change gears because 3.9 is due out in 19 days and we have to test and issue some tickets if we want to catch any errors. A list of items to concentrate on will help guide us.

    Contact @AccessibleJoe for details if you want to help test 3.9.

  • Andrea Middleton 7:09 pm on March 24, 2014 Permalink
    Tags: , WordCamp   

    WordCamp Websites and Accessibility 

    Howdy, accessibility team! Currently, WordCamp websites are not reliably accessible across the board, which is sad-making. We want to change this; can you help?

    First, we’d like to make sure that the themes we make available for WordCamp organizing teams to customize with CSS are all accessible. The themes available for WordCamps to customize are:

    Twenty Ten
    Twenty Eleven
    Twenty Twelve
    Twenty Thirteen
    Twenty Fourteen
    WordCamp Base
    WordCamp Base Redux

    Can you tell us which of the above themes have accessibility issues, so we can make (or submit patches for) those fixes?

    Second, we’d like to create a guide of baselines for CSS accessibility (contrast, etc) so organizers can know what expectations we have for official sites.

    If you’re available and interested in helping WordCamp websites become more accessible, we’re incredibly grateful for your help.

    • Joe Dolson 7:28 pm on March 24, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      That’s awesome. At the moment, Twenty-Fourteen is the only one of those themes that includes really solid accessibility. Twenty-Thirteen and Twenty-Twelve are decent, but have some key problems that aren’t resolved. Some of these are getting dealt with along with the 3.9 release, however.

      The simple baseline for CSS accessibility is actually really straightforward: accessible contrast needs to have a luminosity ratio of 4.5:1 for normal sized text (e.g. below 18pt), or 3:1 for large text. That’s the minimum baseline. This also means that change states should meet the same requirements: e.g., :hover and :focus states or the contrast between linked text and neighboring text. Those contrast requirements can be minimized, however, if there are non-color indicators (such as a link underline), that make it obvious that the link is different from surrounding text.

      The major issue most common to the rest of these themes relate to keyboard accessibility — visible focus and access to drop-down menus, in particular.

      I’ve already provided assistance with some patches for Twenty Twelve, Thirteen, and Fourteen; but I’m happy to assist with whatever you need to make these themes more accessible.

    • jebswebs 7:38 pm on March 24, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      This is timely as we are planning the first Maine WordCamp this summer. Since it is all new to me, I am all ears. What can I do to help?

      • _Redd 5:31 pm on April 1, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

        @andreamiddleton @jebswebs Absolutely awesome to have you here. Joe Dolson, and David A. Kennedy are drop-dead amazing, and you will find that is true of each and every other member of the Accessibility Team. As is true for Matt and the entire WordPress community; I’ve never met a better bunch.

        Do take David up on his offer to help. He, Joe, and the others have an amazing ability to put complicated topics in a clear, understandable manner that I personally find invaluable. Keep posting your requests; the experts will see that your questions get answered.

        Also, consider joining us in our weekly meetings on Wednesdays. Right now, they are at 1900 UTC.

    • David A. Kennedy 12:50 am on March 31, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      @andreamiddleton That’s great! And we’re glad to help! To supplement what Joe mentioned above, check out the accessibility guidelines for themes. That will be good for organizers to keep in mind as they work with themes and the content.

      I’m have a few side projects going right now that are keeping me busy, but would be happy to help wherever I can.

    • uklistingz 3:15 pm on April 5, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      I have used these themes infact whenever you install its there. I found twenty fourteen most useful and with much features. I did not find yet any accessibility issues. if i will i will definitely throw a message. thanks

  • Graham Armfield 5:46 pm on March 24, 2014 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , ,   

    Digital Accessibility Centre Visit – Part 3: The Blind Perspective 

    This is the third post documenting a recent visit to Digital Accessibility Centre in Neath, South Wales organised by fellow team member Siobhan BamberThe first post can be found here, and the second post here.

    Three of the staff from DAC gave us feedback on using the WordPress admin screens. Each of the three have a particular impairment, and the visit was a valuable opportunity to learn about ways we could improve WordPress for everyone.

    In this post we take feedback from Carly who is totally blind. She showed us how she used a screen reader and gave us some great feedback on using the WordPress admin screens with a screen reader.

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    • ceo 6:19 pm on March 24, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Looks like there’s lots to chat about. :-)

      It is important to let people know when a new panel or window is to open – eg Add Media.

      I’ve only been saying this for, well, ever. Though, to be fair, it was even worse before when these kinds of things popped up and you literally could navigate out of the window with the screen reader but still have it open. (At least, I don’t encounter the issue any more, personally. It might still be broken in some places.)

    • _Redd 8:09 pm on April 1, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Graham, this is sheer gold. I hope we can chat about this in the next IRC meeting. Thanks again for everything you’ve done here.

  • Graham Armfield 2:40 pm on March 24, 2014 Permalink
    Tags: , colour contrast, , , text resize   

    Digital Accessibility Centre Visit – Part 2: Poor Vision 

    This is the second post (of three) documenting a recent visit to Digital Accessibility Centre in Neath, South Wales organised by fellow team member Siobhan Bamber. The first post can be found here.

    Three of the staff from DAC gave us feedback on using the WordPress admin screens. Each of the three have a particular impairment, and the visit was a valuable opportunity to learn about ways we could improve WordPress for everyone.

    In this post we take feedback from Gary who has poor vision.

    (More …)

  • Graham Armfield 11:48 am on March 24, 2014 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , voice recognition   

    Digital Accessibility Centre Visit – Part 1: Introduction, Keyboard and Dragon Testing 

    On February 25th 2014 I was honoured to visit the offices of the Digital Accessibility Centre in Neath, South Wales, UK. The trip was organised by fellow wpa11y team member Siobhan Bamber.

    This post is the first in a series of three which summarise the feedback we received on using WordPress from three users with impairments. Our first session was with Becs who uses Dragon NaturallySpeaking (voice recognition software) and does keyboard accessibility testing.


    (More …)

    • _Redd 5:58 pm on April 1, 2014 Permalink | Log in to Reply

      Graham, this is a drop-dead fantastic report. I have no doubt that there are many who will be grateful for the elegant manner in which you’ve described the problems, and made them visible to those who don’t use assistive technology.


      “In all cases, she felt strongly that tab order should follow what’s visible on the screen. She also felt it was confusing and not at all intuitive to have to reverse tab to reach the Add media button and the Change Permalink button in the Edit Post screen”.

      If you recall, I was confused for the same reason when conducting keyboard tests as to the reasoning behind tab order, but was only able to my confusion as frustration. It was said so much more elegantly here, in that tab order should follow what’s visible on screen. I fully agree. But I’m not sure the “skip links” may be coming into play here, and that actually, things were working the way they should have.

      It has become a real puzzle as to why one has to “reverse tab” in order to bring focus to the Add Media button, even though it is a link. At first I thought it was a FireFox problem, but I find it present on all three browsers, just testing for tab order—nothing to do with Dragon Naturally Speaking. But this is a consistent problem. At first I thought it might be because of the span class wp-media-buttons-icon, but other areas within the screen, with the same class, receive focus when they should. Perhaps, this too, should be another action item.

      At any rate, I am again overwhelmed at how awesome your insights are, and I think it is safe to say we are all grateful for what you do.

  • Jordan_TheGenius 10:26 pm on March 13, 2014 Permalink  

    Hey guys…
    I have posted my WordPress 3.8 Keyboard Screen testing results for the Users, Tools, and Settings sections.

  • Joseph Karr O'Connor 9:59 am on February 27, 2014 Permalink  

    Accessibility Team Update: February 26, 2014 

    Contributor Day Activities

    We discussed activities that might be suitable for contributor days.

    Team member Graham Armfield will be leading the accessibility table at the UK Contributor Day in Manchester on Saturday, March 1, and will help refine this list based on that experience.

  • Joseph Karr O'Connor 10:46 am on February 15, 2014 Permalink  

    Accessibility Team Update: February 12, 2014 

    Admin Screen Audit

    We continue to test 3.8.1 admin screens for keyboard accessibility, here are the screens left to check. If you want to pitch in and help out, Tweet to @WPAccessibility or comment here and we’ll get you the details. It sure is fun painting this fence, said Tom Sawyer.

    • Toolbar: Howdy [user] – Edit My Profile, Log Out
    • Dashboard: Home, Updates
    • Appearance: Themes, Menus, Header, Editor
    • Plugins: Installed Plugins, Add New, Editor
    • Settings: General, Writing, Reading, Discussion, Media, Permalinks

    Theme Accessibility Review

    @joedolson reports that there are currently four themes going through the optional theme accessibility review process. @accessiblejoe reports that a Cities theme, a church/congregation theme, Nashville, by Anna Belle Leiserson @faithandweb is heading toward completion. We noted that Accessible Zen by @davidakennedy is already in the directory, and that his Alexandria team is starting work on an accessible government theme. The Los Angeles accessible theme team is working on an accessible business/ecommerce theme. We’re seeing some good progress on the review process and production of themes.

    The CSUN Conference

    If you are going to the International Technology and Persons With Disabilities Conference in March we invite you to join accessibility team members when we present Roadmap For Making WordPress Accessible and don’t miss the @WPAccessibility Tweetup in the hour before Tommy Edison, @BlindFilmMaker, delivers the keynote address in the evening on Tuesday March 18.

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