Accessibility Team Meeting Notes: March 19, 2021

These are the weekly notes for the AccessibilityAccessibility Accessibility (commonly shortened to a11y) refers to the design of products, devices, services, or environments for people with disabilities. The concept of accessible design ensures both “direct access” (i.e. unassisted) and “indirect access” meaning compatibility with a person’s assistive technology (for example, computer screen readers). ( Team meeting that happens on Fridays. You can read the full transcript on our Slack channel and find the meeting’s agenda here.

Review of accessibility team’s goals for WordPress 5.8

Following the pubblication of the call foor WordPress 5.8 Accessibility Team’s goals and the decision to postpone the discussion by two weeks, a general discussion took place about some of the proposed goals for next release.

WordPress 5.8 will be out in July 2021, but the exact date hasn’t been set yet.

Here are the main takeaways of the discussion.

  • GutenbergGutenberg The Gutenberg project is the new Editor Interface for WordPress. The editor improves the process and experience of creating new content, making writing rich content much simpler. It uses ‘blocks’ to add richness rather than shortcodes, custom HTML etc. development will be followed more in detail. @ryokuhi volunteered to review the page about Gutenberg testing to update it and create a routine to test if users relying on assistive technologies (for example, using only keyboard navigation and/or screen readers) would be able to perform standard tasks in the blockBlock Block is the abstract term used to describe units of markup that, composed together, form the content or layout of a webpage using the WordPress editor. The idea combines concepts of what in the past may have achieved with shortcodes, custom HTML, and embed discovery into a single consistent API and user experience. editor.
  • Also, Full Site Editing (which will land in the next release) will be a priority. @critterverse agreed to try to keep up with the FSE outreach experiment by testing using assistive technologies, making sure there’s some accessibility coverage and reporting to the team with the results.
  • Work on documentation will be central even during the next release. @Hauwa Abashiya reported about a discussion regarding the possible audience for the accessibility handbook, which includes both creators (designers and developers looking for resources about accessibility) and contributors (who want to contribute to the project itself). As such, the documentation working group will focus around:
    • the about page (what the team does, the different working groups)
    • the Getting Started or Get Involved chapter (how the team works, onboarding, ways you can contribute, etc.)
    • resources for creators (tools, pattern library, etc.)

It’ll be up to each working group to keep moving towards these (and other) goals during the release cycle, so all contributors are invited to join a working group and become a representative for a working group, in case there isn’t one.

Open floor

@Jill Mugge friendly reminded all WordPress contributors to always add the alternative text to images in posts.